The United States Mint will begin sales of the 2012 Infantry Soldier Silver Dollar commemorative coins on February 16, 2012 at 12:00 Noon ET. The available products will include individual proof and uncirculated coins, as well as the Defenders of Freedom Set.
The program was authorized under Public Law 110-357 to commemorate the legacy of the U.S. Army Infantry and the establishment of the National Infantry Museum and Soldier Center. Designs for the coin are intended to be emblematic of the courage, pride, sacrifice, sense of duty and history of the Infantry. From 12 different obverse and 7 different reverse design candidates, the Secretary of the Treasury selected those shown below, following consultation with the National Infantry Foundation, Commission of Fine Arts, and review by the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee.
The obverse design depicts a modern Infantry soldier on rocky ground charging forward and beckoning troops to follow, symbolizing the “Follow Me” motto of the Infantry. Inscriptions include “Liberty”, “In God We Trust”, and “2012”. The reverse design features the crossed rifles insignia, the branch insignia of the Infantry. Inscriptions read “United States of America”, “One Dollar”, and “E Pluribus Unum”. The obverse was designed by Joel Iskowitz and sculpted by Michael Gaudioso, while the reverse was designed by Ronald D. Sanders and sculpted by Norman E. Nemeth.
The Infantry Soldier Silver Dollars are struck at the West Point Mint and carry the “W” mint mark. The coins have a maximum authorized mintage of 350,000 across all product options.
As part of the program, the US Mint is offering the Infantry Soldier Silver Dollar Defenders of Freedom Set. This set carries a production limit of 50,000 and includes one silver dollar and a replica dog tag on a miniature chain. The illustrated packaging includes a quote from President John F. Kennedy. Although the product description page indicates that the set will include the proof version of the silver dollar, the image and pricing for the set suggest that it may actually include the uncirculated version of the coin. The US Mint has made errors in product page descriptions on rare occasions in the past, which were eventually corrected. If the set actually does include the proof version of the coin, it will be priced lower than the individual proof coin after the introductory period has concluded. (See pricing, later in this post.)
Update: Apparently it is a proof coin.
The Defenders of Freedom Set represents the return of the special product offerings often created by the US Mint to feature commemorative coins. In 2008 for the Bald Eagle commemorative coins, the US Mint had offered a three coin proof set, young collector’s set, coin and medal set, and the American Legacy Collection. In 2009, the US Mint had offered the Lincoln Coin and Chronicles Set, which sold out of its 50,000 maximum mintage in about 30 hours despite a one per household ordering limit. In 2009, the Braille Education Set had also been offered, which eventually sold 10,698 units out of the 25,000 maximum. There were no multi-coin sets or special products offered for the 2010 or 2011 commemorative coins.
From the start of sales on February 16, 2012 at 12:00 Noon ET until March 19, 2012 at 5:00 PM ET, the Infantry Soldier Silver Dollars will be available at introductory pricing. After this date, regular pricing will go into effect, which reflects an increase of $5 per individual coin. The Defenders of Freedom Set does not carry an introductory price. All prices reflect a surcharge of $10 per coin, which will be distributed to the National Infantry Foundation for the purpose of establishing an endowment to support the maintenance of the National Infantry Museum and Soldier Center after its completion.
|Intro Price||Regular Price|
|Proof Silver Dollar||49.95||54.95|
|Uncirculated Silver Dollar||44.95||49.95|
|Defenders of Freedom Set||N/A||51.95|
There are no household ordering limits in place for the individual proof and uncirculated Infantry Soldier Silver Dollars. The Defenders of Freedom Set carries a limit of 100 units per household.
Last year, the 2011 Army Silver Dollars sold 163,346 coins across proof and uncirculated versions, while the Medal of Honor Silver Dollars sold 157,619 across both versions. The Infantry Soldier Silver Dollar could potentially fare better due to the lower pricing, the offering of the special set, and the likely smaller number of competing numismatic offerings released by the US Mint.