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The “Other” GSA Silver Dollars, Part 1

NSDR Journal


Spring 2004



The “Other” GSA Silver Dollars, Part 1

By Lewis Rosenbaum




There were almost 3 million uncirculated Carson City Silver Dollars in the GSA Silver Dollar Sale holdings.  Also, there were over 110,000 silver dollars, uncirculated and circulated, from the other mints in the GSA Sale.

The intent of this article is to provide you some data and information about these “other” GSA Silver Dollars, i.e. the non-CC GSA silver dollars.

In December 1971, the GSA took possession of almost 3 million silver dollars from the Treasury Department.  Several weeks later all the silver dollars had been transferred to the U.S. Bullion Depository at West Point, New York where inspection, sorting, and packaging of silver dollars was to take place.  After sorting the silver dollars was completed, the published numbers for the non-CC GSA silver dollars were 27,980 mixed uncirculated and 84,165 mixed circulated.


The Potluck!

The 110,000+ non-CC GSA silver dollars were sold only in the second sale held June 1 to July 31, 1973.  These non-CC dollars were listed as “The Potluck!” in the 2nd GSA sale brochure.

















The words on the brochure indicated that the “The Potluck!” contained two selections:  Selection #1 mixed, circulated Morgan and Peace silver dollars and Section #2 uncirculated Morgan and Peace silver dollars.  Selection #1 also contained 13,426, 1878-CC that were removed from the 1878-CC uncirculated category due to tarnish and/or scratches.  The published number for the mixed circulated category then became 97,591.

The uncirculated dollars were packaged in a durable plastic case like the GSA Carson City dollars.  The circulated dollars were packaged in a Mylar display packet and enclosed in a dark-blue carrying envelope.  The minimum bid for the mixed uncirculated category was $5, and the minimum bid for the mixed circulated category was $3.  Both categories of “The Potluck!” were sellouts.


Mixed Uncirculated Non-CC GSA Silver Dollars

At any coin show you can see many of the Carson City dollars in the GSA holders.  Occasionally, you will notice that the hard plastic holder has different wording; instead of Carson City printed above the silver dollar it has United States.  These are the GSA dollars from selection #2 of “The Potluck!”  Most likely the date/mint will be 1883-O, 1884-O, 1885-O, or 1887-P.  These are the most common of the “hard pack” non-CC GSA dollars and it is estimated they comprise more than half of the available hard pack non-CC GSA dollars.

There are no known records from the GSA Sale that specify the dates and mints of mixed uncirculated non-CC GSA Dollars.  The second, third, and fourth Editions of the VAM book list dates and mints that were noted when Leroy Van Allen and George Mallis visited West Point in May 1973 to examine the 1880-CC overdates.  However, their published dates, mints, and numbers are general and not complete.

So far the number of proven mixed uncirculated non-CC GSA dates/mints stands at 28.  Several more dates/mints are speculated but not proven.  The list of known mixed uncirculated non-CC GSA is:


1878-P 7/8TF 1881-O 1884-P 1898-O
1878-S 1881-S 1884-O 1899-O
1879-P 1882-O 1885-P 1900-O
1879-S 1882-O 1885-O 1901-O
1878-S Rev 78 1882-S 1886-P 1902-O
1880-O 1883-P 1887-P 1903-O
1880-S 1883-O 1890-S 1904-O


The list has been compiled over several years from information from collectors, dealers, and auction records (mostly eBay).  Much more detailed data will be forthcoming in Bryan Sonnier’s book about the GSA Silver Dollars.

Note that there are no Peace Dollars listed.  The words for selection #2 of “The Potluck!” hint that there might be Peace Dollars but so far no Peace Dollars are known in the mixed uncirculated non-CC GSA.  A few of the dealers experienced in buying and selling the non-CC GSA dollars have stated they have not even heard rumors of Peace Dollars in the hard plastic pack.

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