The Pittman Act and Morgan Silver Dollars

If you know your numismatic history, you’re probably familiar with the Pittman Act of 1918, an American federal law that was sponsored by Senator Key Pittman of Nevada and enacted on April 23, 1918. The Pittman Act resulted in millions of silver dollars being melted down and sold as bullion overseas, with the U.S. Mint required to buy silver from American mining companies at rates above the market price.

Coin Week reports:

While it is true that the Act was meant to help silver mining companies in the western states, that wasn’t the main point. In fact, a good portion of the Act was written to buy the cooperation of Western politicians in something that just might have saved World War I for the Allies.

Read more at Coin Week.

Would you like to learn more about he beautiful and historic Morgan silver dollar? Check out A Guide Book of Morgan Silver Dollars 4th Edition, from Whitman Publishing. In this fourth edition of his bestselling book, the “dean of American numismatics,” Q. David Bowers, offers an engaging portrait of the country’s most popular classic coin. You’ll learn what to look for when you buy, how to grade your coins, how to cherrypick varieties, and ways to become a smarter collector.


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