The leading gold coin for sale from the United States Mint is the American Gold Eagle. The nation’s official gold bullion coin, the Gold Eagles were introduced following passage of the Gold Bullion Coin Act of 1985. The GBCA passed the US Senate on November 14, 1985, and the US House of Representatives on December 2, 1985, before heading to the desk of President Ronald Reagan, who signed the bill into law on December 17, 1985.
The Gold Bullion Coin Act authorized the production of the new American Gold Eagle bullion coin using gold mined from within the United States. The coins are imprinted with their gold content and legal tender face value as assigned by US Congress. Learn all about the design, history, and mintage of this coin now!
The American Gold Eagle coin features an exclusive reverse design and an obverse image of Liberty plucked from the history of American coinage. On the obverse side of all uncirculated American Gold Eagle coins is the image of Lady Liberty which Augustus Saint-Gaudens created in 1907.
Saint-Gaudens was commissioned by President Theodore Roosevelt to create a new design for the nation’s primary gold coins which would bring American coin design into the 20th century and accurately reflect the country’s growing international prominence. Saint-Gaudens began working on the design in 1905. His depiction of Liberty captures her figure in a front-facing design that depicts her walking along the Potomac River as she leaves Washington DC. This vision of Liberty symbolizes her role in leading the nation into a brighter future. Her right hand holds a torch high to light the way while her left clutches a large olive branch symbolizing peace.
In the background, there are rays of sun breaking over the horizon as the US Capitol Building is visible at her feet. The word “Liberty” is engraved above her head and the year of issue is engraved within the rays. Saint-Gaudens’ original design included 46 stars around her figure. In 1912, the US Mint added two more stars to the design to reflect the addition of Arizona and New Mexico to the Union. For the uncirculated American Gold Eagle, the US Mint added two more stars to bring the total to 50 and reflect the additions of Hawaii and Alaska to the Union after World War II.
The reverse side of the American Gold Eagle coinage features a design created just for this series by Miley Busiek. Busiek’s design includes a female eagle sitting in the family nest with a hatchling visible under her wing. Overhead, a male eagle returns to the nest with a branch in its talons. Engravings on this face include “United States of America” above, “E Pluribus Unum” and “In God We Trust” on either side of the nest, and “1 oz Fine Gold ~ 50 Dollars” below.
To mark the 35th anniversary of the American Gold Eagle, the United States Mint has unveiled a brand-new reverse design of the American bald eagle for the first time since the 1986 debut of the Gold Eagle and Silver Eagle bullion series. While both coins are getting new designs, each series gets its own distinctive design. For the American Gold Eagle coin, the US Mint eventually chose a design from Artistic Infusion Program Artist Jennie Norris. An experienced raptor handler as a volunteer, Ms. Norris used her deep connection to wildlife to come up with a stirring image of the powerful American bald eagle’s head. The new design features:
Like the American Silver Eagle, the 2021 American Gold Eagle begins the release year with the existing design on the reverse from Miley Busiek. The combination of the COVID-19 pandemic and intense demand for silver and gold in early 2020 stretched the US Mint’s capability to not only meet the demand for coins, but also quickly make a final decision on the new designs for each coin. The US Mint plans to have the new designs out by mid-2021. Proof and Burnished versions of the Gold Eagle will also get the new design, with a later rollout than the Brilliant Uncirculated coins.
Uncirculated American Gold Eagle coins debuted from the United States Mint in 1986, with bullion sales starting in October of that year. the series includes four weights in total ranging from 1 oz gold to 1/2 oz, 1/4 oz, and 1/10 oz of pure gold content. The coins actually contain 22-karat gold with 91.67% gold alloyed with silver and copper to create a more wear-resistant bullion coin for investors. The coins have face values issued in US dollars, with the coins featuring the following denominations by weight:
Throughout the history of the uncirculated American Gold Eagle, only one minor change has been made to the design of the coins. When first released by the US Mint in 1986, the Gold Eagles featured date marks on the obverse engraved in Roman numerals. This continued until 1992, at which point the US Mint switched the date marks to Arabic numerals.
Under the Gold Bullion Coin Act of 1985, the United States Mint is legally obligated to use gold to produce the American Gold Eagle which is sourced from within the United States. It is also obligated to produce the bullion coins to meet demand among investors, which means the mintage figures for the uncirculated American Gold Eagle can vary drastically from year to year.
When the uncirculated Gold Eagles were first introduced, the coin program was met with intense demand among investors. The initial release year of 1986 featured the following mintage figures, which remained all-time highs until the Y2K scare:
Originally, the 1 oz gold coin in the series was the most popular with investors. However, when it was introduced the price of gold was much lower than it has been throughout most of the 21st century. Economic scares have the ability to impact the mintage of the coins and the popularity of particular designs. While the 1/2 oz and 1/4 oz coins have yet to surpass their initial 1986 mintage figures, the 1 oz and 1/10 oz coins set new records in 1998 and 1999. The following mintage figures represent the highest in the program’s history:
If you want to buy gold from the United States Mint, the uncirculated American Gold Eagle is a great place to start. JM Bullion customer service is available to help answer any questions you might have about these coins. Feel free to reach out to us at 800-276-6508, chat with us live online, or simply send us an email with your inquiries.