Washington, D.C. — The U.S. Mint today announced that 1998 American Eagle Proof Platinum Coins will go on sale June 5, featuring the first of the five–year Vistas of LibertyJ reverse designs – available only in 1998.
“This year’s Proof Platinum Eagle marks the first time in history the Mint has embarked on a five–year design series for a coin,” said Mint Director Philip N. Diehl. “The Vistas of LibertyJ designs will profile the unique character and charisma of our Nation’s diverse landscapes, capturing the spirit and strength of America and its people.”
Mint sculptor/engraver John Mercanti’s new reverse design depicts a bald eagle in flight off the coast of New England, with a lighthouse towering on a cliff and the moon rising in the evening sky. The obverse is Mercanti=s stunning APortrait of Liberty,” America’s most recognized symbol of freedom – the Statue of Liberty.
A special feature of the Proof Platinum Eagle is the coin’s incuse sculpting, where the design element is below the surface plane of the coin – an unusual detail on U.S. coinage. Three such details are featured on the 1998 Proof Platinum Eagle, in the inscription ‘E Pluribus Unum’ on the border of the obverse, and the inscriptions for fineness (e.g., ‘.9995 Platinum, 1oz.’) and denomination(e.g., $100) on the reverse.
Last year, the Mint sold out the Four–Coin Set and the three–coin Impressions of LibertyJ Set within three weeks, and the one ounce Proof Platinum Eagle in 16 weeks, turning away well over a thousand orders.
Since inaugural year sales for coin programs are historically strongest, second–year Proof Platinum mintages have been reduced by 36 percent. However, due to the exceptional demand that was left unanswered last year in the sets, the Mint has reallocated coins from the individual options to the Four Coin Set, increasing that edition to 10,000 units from 8,000. This leaves the individual options with remarkably low levels of only 5,000 units for the one ounce coin; 4,000 for the half–ounce coin; 5,000 for the quarter–ounce coin, and 10,000 for the tenth–ounce coin. The Mint expects strong demand and a swift sell–out of all options.
This is a limited–time offer. American Eagle Proof Platinum Coins will be available until 12/31/98, or a sellout, whichever comes first. Mintage of these coins is strictly limited; orders received after mintage limits have been reached will not be processed. No telephone orders will be accepted for this product. Only orders postmarked on or after June 5, 1998, will be accepted. The U.S. Mint may limit quantities sold on a per–person basis. Coins may be delivered in multiple shipments. Please allow approximately 4 weeks for delivery An official order form is not required to submit an order, and the Mint will accept orders submitted by overnight mail. Mail orders to: The United States Mint, P.O. Box 382620, Pittsburgh, PA 15250–8620.
Prices for the individual Proof Platinum American Eagles remain at the 1997 level: $695 for the one–ounce; $395 for the half–ounce; $199 for the quarter–ounce, $99 for the tenth–ounce; and $1,350 for The Four Coin Set. For authorized maximum mintages for the Proof Platinum Eagles, see our 1997 – 1998 Platinum mintage tables.
Authority to produce platinum coins was enacted as part of the Omnibus Consolidated Appropriations for Fiscal Year 1997 (P.L. 104–208). The one–ounce carries a $100 face value; the half–ounce a $50 face value; the quarter–ounce a $25 face value, and the tenth–ounce a $10 face value. For information about how to purchase Proof Platinum American Eagle Coins, please telephone (202) 283–2646 or visit the Mint’s Online Catalog at http://www.usmint.gov/catalog.