Silver Coin Spotlight: James Monroe Presidential Coin

James Monroe Presidential Coin
by: Ben Tseytlin - on Coins & Currency

2019 marks the release of the James Monroe Presidential Silver Coin, a product which is sought after numerous collectors. It is struck in honor of James Monroe, who was the fifth president of the United States. It is part of the Presidential Series of coins which also includes John Adams, James Madison and George Washington.

About James Monroe

James Monroe was one of the Founding Fathers of the United States, and he served as President between 1817 and 1825. He was a Democrat, and the final Virginia Dynasty member, and his time in office coincided with the “Era of Good Feelings,” the period after the War of 1812 when Americans desired greater unity and collective purpose. He is most famous for his Monroe Doctrine, the policy which opposed European intervention around the Americas. James Monroe also served as a Virginia Governor, U.S. Senator and Ambassador for Britain and France, Secretary of War and Secretary of State.

Although Monroe was born into a wealthy planter family, he distinguished himself by joining the Continental Army and battling the British during the American War of Independence. After the war concluded he begin learning law under the tutelage of Thomas Jefferson between 1780 and 1783, and went on to become a Continental Congress delegate. He opposed U.S. Constitution ratification and played a key role in the negotiations involving the Louisiana Purchase, which culminated in the United States almost doubling in size.

Coin Highlights

Each of these coins is struck from one troy ounce of silver with a purity of .999 percent and a 1.6 inch diameter. The finish is matte, and overall it uses a design which is very similar to early Presidential Medals which were made from bronze. It also complements older medals which were presented during treaty signings with foreign or Native American leaders.

The newest medal features an image of James Monroe on the obverse (head) side, which was created by artist Moritz Furst. A number of inscriptions are visible, including “President of the U.S., A.D. 1817 and James Monroe.” The reverse side (tails) was produced by artist John Reich and has the inscription “Peace and Friendship,” with an image of two hands which are clasped together in a sign of amity. Also visible are a crossed tomahawk and peace pipe that can be seen above them.

These coins are struck with the planchets which are also utilized for the American Silver Eagles. However, whereas the Silver Eagles have edges which are reeded, the James Monroe coins have edges which are plain. They have a weight of about 31 grams and are struck at multiple U.S. Mintage facilities. Yet despite this, the coins do not display mint marks which denote where they were produced. Each of these coins is encapsulated and when shipped will arrive in a special display case that includes the Certificate of Authenticity.