On February 9, 2012 at 12:00 Noon ET, the US Mint will begin accepting orders for the 2011-P Chickasaw National Recreation Area Five Ounce Silver Uncirculated Coins. This will be the tenth release within the numismatic program.
The reverse design of the coin features a depiction of Lincoln Bridge, which was dedicated in 1909 to celebrate the centennial of Abraham Lincoln’s birth. The bridge has become a favorite scenic designation, and is also the first and oldest developed structure built at Chickasaw. The reverse was designed by Donna Weaver and sculpted by Jim Licaretz. The obverse design of the coin features the 1932 portrait of George Washington designed by John Flanagan.
Each coin is struck in 5.0 troy ounce of .999 fine silver and has a diameter of 3 inches. The coins have an uncirculated finish and carry the “P” mint mark on the obverse.
As with the previous 2011-dated numismatic releases, the Chickasaw coins are limited to a total mintage of 35,000 coins.
For this release, the US Mint will not impose household ordering limits. For the 2010-dated releases an ordering limit of one per household was initially imposed. For the other 2011-dated releases, an ordering limit of five per household was initially imposed.
The Chickasaw Five Ounce Uncirculated Coins are priced at $204.95 each. This is the lowest starting price for any release within the series. The initial pricing for previous releases has been $279.95 or $229.95.
Demand for the series has dropped steadily as the US Mint somewhat rapidly released the first nine designs in the space of less than nine months. During the past few weeks there has been some rekindled interest in the program, as the market price of silver has risen and the US Mint has maintained the same pricing for the coins.
Other Developments for America the Beautiful Five Ounce Silver Coins
Recently, there has been some news and developments related to both the numismatic and bullion versions of the America the Beautiful Five Ounce Silver Coins.
As a refresher, the bullion versions of the coin feature a brilliant or often proof like finish and do not carry a mint mark. The bullion coins are sold by the United States Mint to a network of authorized purchasers responsible for distributing the coins to the broader market. The numismatic versions of the coin feature an uncirculated finish created through a vapor blasting technique and carry the “P” mint mark. These coins are sold by the United States Mint directly to the public.
Based on a reading of the authorizing legislation, it had previously seemed that the bullion versions could only be sold to authorized purchasers during the year of release for the corresponding quarter dollar. Refer to this article on Coin Update News which explains the US Mint’s interpretation of the law. Essentially, the Mint’s broad interpretation will allow them to sell their remaining stockpile of 2011-dated bullion versions for many years into the future.
The sales limitation did not come into play for the 2010-dated bullion coins, since the entire 165,000 coins produced were sold by December 23, 2010. For the 2011-dated bullion coins, the US Mint may have produced up to 633,500, but only managed to sell 397,700 by the close of the year. Sales of the remaining inventory it seems may continue for many years to come.
The US Mint has provided an indication of the production levels for the 2012-dated numismatic and bullion coins for the series within this Numismatic News article. They have “penciled in” 45,000 per release for the bullion versions and 25,000 per release for the numismatic versions.
Previous production levels for the bullion versions were 33,000 per release in 2010 and 126,700 per release in 2011. Previous production levels for the numismatic versions were 27,000 per release in 2010 and 35,000 per release in 2011.