One of the most anticipated United States Mint numismatic product offerings for this year was the 2013 West Point Silver Eagle Set, which contains coins with a reverse proof and enhanced uncirculated finish. Issued to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the edifice that houses the United States Mint facility at West Point, the US Mint accepted orders during a four week window beginning May 9, 2013 and ending June 6, 2013.
Sales were extremely brisk during the opening days from collectors and dealers eager to be among the first to receive their sets. After the opening weekend, sales had reached more than 180,000 units. By the conclusion of the ordering window, sales had reached 281,310 units.
At the start of sales, the US Mint indicated that shipping for the sets was expected to commence in mid to late June. Information posted on the product page after the close of the ordering window stated that fulfillment would occur between mid-June and the end of September 2013 and orders would be fulfilled on a first in, first served basis.
While the vast majority of collectors still seem to be awaiting their 2013 West Point Silver Eagle Sets, at least a few have reported the arrival of their sets. One of the early recipients was a Mint News Blog reader Steve who was kind enough to share some images and information about his sets. He placed his order around 12:12 PM ET on the opening day of sales, with an order number #41478XXX. (Last three digits removed for security.)
Each 2013 West Point Silver Eagle Set consists of a reverse proof and enhanced uncirculated American Silver Eagle, housed within a single highly polished, blue lacquered hardwood presentation case with a certificate of authenticity. This packaging is similar the prior year’s 2012 San Francisco Silver Eagle Set.
The reverse proof Silver Eagle features a mirrored design elements and inscriptions against a frosted background, or the reverse of the traditional cameo proof appearance. The enhanced uncirculated Silver Eagle features a mix of heavily frosted, lightly frosted, and uncirculated finishes to create a new appearance for the classic design. According to information provided by the Mint, the uncirculated and heavily frosted finishes are used alternately throughout the design and inscriptions. The lightly frosted finish is used for the background fields.
After examining the sets in hand, Steve provided these observations in a comment on a previous post:
The Enhanced Uncirculated coin is awesome. From the pics I’d seen, I really couldn’t tell how the coin would look in hand. What surprises me is that the field of of coin actually has a semi-proof like reflection.
He provided these additional observations by email:
Like I said in my post, the most surprising thing to me is that the field has a semi-prooflike look and is rather dark when compared to the relief of the coin. In fact, from a distance (if you were displaying the set say on a table in OGP) you could easily mistake the enhanced coin as regular proof…that’s how big the contrast is between the field and the relief. The only thing that gives it away as not being a proof coin (again from a 6 foot distance) is if you notice the stripes on the flag that drape down Liberty have contrasting looks…every other stripe has a reverse proof mirrored look.
A big thank you to Steve for sharing these images!