Up until the late 19th century, Silver Dollars were a popular form of currency in the US, but were popular due to their utility and not so much because of their design. In 1878, with the release of the Morgan Silver Dollar, that all changed as this new coin boasted an extravagant design to complement its overall utility. Nowadays, though the Morgan Silver Dollar is no longer being minted it is still extremely popular in the eyes of collectors.
The challenge with these coins, however, is the fact that they are so aged, very few pieces have survived the years in excellent condition. Because fewer well-preserved pieces exist every year, finding a Morgan Silver Dollar in excellent condition is only going to grow ever more challenging.
For collectors, the goal always is to add only the most well-preserved pieces to collections. Everyone strives to have the most attractive collection, but with Morgan Silver Dollars, this is not so easy to accomplish. The reason for this is due to the fact that these coins are so old and have had ample opportunity to become worn and damaged.
Normally, a person who would like to have the condition of their coins judged would send the coin away for grading by a professional organization. Understanding that not everyone has the time or money to do this, we have elaborated on the most popular coin grades below.
Uncirculated: If a coin is determined to be Uncirculated, this means that it did not ever exchange hands, or exchanged hands for only a very short period of time. These coins will appear to have been just minted and will have retained all of their original texture and imagery. For collectors, these are often the most expensive coins on the market.
Extremely Fine: A coin that is determined to be of Extremely Fine grade is one that spent only a limited amount of time being circulated. These coins will play host to some extremely light surface wear, but apart from that will be in pristine condition. These coins are also up there as far as price is concerned, but their pleasing aesthetic qualities help explain the higher price tag.
Fine: If a coin is determined to be of Fine grade, this means that the piece in question was circulated for a period of time and damaged to some extent. Realistically, the damage you will find on these coins is not severe, but you will notice a wearing down of the coin’s texture as well as some consistent light scratching.
Good: Good is the worst grade a coin can receive and is usually indicative of a piece that has been quite heavily circulated throughout its lifetime. These pieces will play host to some heavy scratching, and on occasion the coin itself will even be chipped or bent. Being that 1879 Morgan Silver Dollars are so old, it is not at all uncommon to find pieces in this shape.
As far as determining a price for the Morgan Dollar is concerned, there are a few factors that you must look at. For one, there were multiple types of the Dollar minted every year, and this means that the price will vary from type to type. Secondly, the condition of the coin means everything to collectors and is something that will also play heavily into the coin’s asking price. Below is a chart aimed at giving you a better idea of what you can expect to pay for a Morgan Silver Dollar given its condition and type.
1879 Morgan Dollar
|1879 Morgan Dollar||N/A||N/A||$39||$40|
|1879 Morgan Dollar (CC)||N/A||N/A||$770||$1,700|
|1879 Morgan Dollar (O)||N/A||N/A||$42||$47|
|1879 Morgan Dollar (S)||N/A||N/A||$45||$70||Source: Red Book|