The Morgan Silver Dollar is one of the most memorable silver coins ever produced by the US Mint Morgan Silver Dollars were produced by the mint at a time when the mining industry expected free coining of silver from the US Treasury. The Treasury was expected to accept all silver presented to it, and return it after it was coined. Following numerous bills in Congress, the Morgan Silver Dollar went into production in 1878 to replace the Seated Liberty Dollar.
The history of the Morgan Silver Dollar is complicated. It was originally approved as a result of the Bland-Allison Act, which required the Treasury to purchase a set monetary value of silver each month to produce silver coins. The Sherman Silver Purchase Act ended that practice, and required the Treasury to purchase a set weight of silver each month, for one year.
The silver purchased by the Treasury under both acts was minted into the Morgan Silver Dollar. George T. Morgan, the US Mints Assistant Engraver at the time, created both the left-profile portrait of Lady Liberty and the bald eagle featured on the coin. Morgan Silver Dollars were produced from 1878 until 1904, when the last of the silver purchased under the Sherman Silver Purchase Act was depleted. An additional one-year minting occurred in 1921.
Although it was minted nearly 20 years after the end of other coins in the series, the 1921 Morgan Silver Dollar featured the same images as the originally minted coins. On the obverse side, Morgans Lady Liberty image is encircled by the phrase E Pluribus Unum and the year of minting. On the reverse side, the image of a bald eagle with outstretched wings is encircled by the phrases United States of America and One Dollar.
The US Mint used various facilities for the production of the silver dollar coins, but the 1921 Morgan Silver Dollar was only produced at the Denver Mint. The mint in Denver was not opened until 1906, after the production of the original Morgan Silver Dollars had ceased. Today, the 1921 Morgan Silver Dollar is available to collectors in almost uncirculated condition.