For those who have followed the Silver American Eagle coin program since its introduction in 1986, the 1996 production year will forever be remembered as the lowest mintage point in the 30-year history of the program. After years of up and down production, the Silver American Eagle slid to its lowest point in program history. The 1996-P Proof Silver American Eagle coin is now available on Silver.com.
- Proof mintage totaled 500,000 coins in 1996!
- 11th issue of Silver American Eagle coins!
- Ships in a commemorative box and includes a Certificate of Authenticity.
- Consists of one troy ounce of .999 fine silver.
- Face value of $1 (USD) is fully backed by the US government.
- Issued a “P” mint mark by the Philadelphia Mint.
The Silver American Eagle was still available only in bullion and proof at this point in program history. For most years, the mintage level for each version grew or shrank in unison, but 1995 and 1996 were different. Due in part to the 10th anniversary celebration, mintage was up for both coins in 1995.
However, in 1996 only the Proof Silver American Eagle saw its mintage levels increase. The bullion program was down 1 million coins from 4.6 million in 1995 to 3.6 million in 1996. The 1996-P Proof Silver American Eagle as actually up 70,000 coins from the previous year, and up 130,000 from its all-time low in 1994. In fact, the 3.6 million bullion coins struck in 1996 is the lowest ever for that particular version.
Silver American Eagle coins hit their lowest total mintage in 1996, with just 4.6 million coins produced. A strong American economy and improving GDP meant fewer investors turning away from the stock market in favor of precious metals.
All Silver American Eagle coins feature the image of Walking Liberty on the obverse. First created in 1916 by Adolph A. Weinman, it originally appeared on the Walking Liberty Half Dollar through 1947.
John Mercanti designed the modern heraldic eagle featured on the reverse of the Silver American Eagle. Mercanti assumed the post of Chief Engraver of the United States Mint in 1986, staying on the job until his retirement in 2010.
If you have questions, Silver.com associates are here to help. You can reach us at 888-989-7223, chat with us live online, or send us an email.