January 29, 1971
Eugene T. Rossides, Assistant Secretary of the Treasury, Enforcement and Operations, today announced the following premium prices for special Eisenhower dollar coins to be made of a 40 percent silver alloy:
$10.00 per coin for the proof, and
$3.00 per coin for the uncirculated.
The Mint will announce ordering details for these collectors’ coins shortly. It is emphasized that orders will not be accepted prior to July 1, 1971.
The Mint plans to produce 150 million of the silver content coins. Cupro-nickel dollar coins also will be made for general circulation, but will not appear until late in the year.
PROOF COINS. These are pieces made from carefully selected blanks that have been highly polished before being fed to the presses. The dies, made solely for this purpose, are also highly polished, and are buffed during use. In order to minimize scratches and abrasions the coins are hand-fed to a slow-moving press. The slower action assures sharper, more even impressions and makes the design much more distinct. Each coin is struck twice. The finished coins have an almost mirror surface.
For the most part, the finish on modern-day proofs is mirror-like. After heat treating, each coinage die has a frosted appearance and texture throughout its entire surface. The field, or background, is then highly polished to a mirror finish. The portrait, and all other design elements in relief, are still frosted. Once in production, the action of successive coining tends to polish the portrait; the two-toned effect gradually disappears.
Proof coin manufacture requires the same careful, painstaking finishing operations as do pieces of expensive jewelry. Each coin is reviewed to detect any defects which may have occurred in the manufacturing operations. All condemned or otherwise imperfect coins are melted.
UNCIRCULATED COINS. These are pieces minted on high-speed presses, moved along conveyors, and run through counting machines. No attempt is made to impart a special finish. Each coin is struck only once. The Treasury cannot guarantee that these coins will be entirely free from blemishes.