1896 Silver Dollar Value

Morgan silver dollars were created in 1896 at three different mints, including Philadelphia, San Francisco, and New Orleans. These days, the value of these coins varies depending on their condition and the printed mint marks, which show the first letter of each mint.

Since its value increases more significantly than any other coin among collectors, you should pay special attention to your 1896 S coin. You can sell a coin for a lot of money if it is in good condition. So let’s examine the value and characteristics of an 1896 Morgan silver dollar.

Morgan Silver Dollar Overview

1896 Silver Dollar Value

After the Coinage Act of 1873, the silver coinage was not used again until the Morgan silver dollar was introduced in 1878. The Bland-Allison Act, which remonetized silver and required that the Treasury buy between two and four million dollars worth of silver each month to be used solely for minting coins, was the legislation that gave rise to the Morgan silver dollar.

Until 1904, when a shortage of silver caused production to stop, Morgan silver dollars were continuously minted. The Morgan silver dollar’s successor, the Peace dollar, was introduced in 1921, the same year that minting resumed for one final year. 

The coin was designed by George T. Morgan and bore his name. Liberty is depicted as a profile bust wearing a coronet on the obverse of Morgan’s design. The phrase “E PLURIBUS UNUM” is displayed above her head, and the year of mintage is displayed beneath her.

An eagle with wings spread, resting one foot on an olive branch and the other on a bundle of arrows, is depicted on the reverse. The mint mark, if any, can be found beneath the base of the laurel wreath that surrounds the eagle.

The phrase “In God We Trust” is displayed above the eagle’s head, and the denomination “ONE CENT” is displayed below the wreath. The words “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” are written along the rim’s upper portion.

Both faces feature a denticle rim, a rim composed of small bumps.

Morgan’s elegant design has made this silver dollar an iconic and beloved coin by collectors of all types.

History of the 1896 Morgan Silver Dollar

1896 was a relatively productive year for the production of the Morgan silver dollar, despite the financial crisis that had occurred just three years earlier. Three mints—Philadelphia, San Francisco, and New Orleans—took part in the production of nearly twenty million silver dollars.

In 1896, Philadelphia produced the greatest number of Morgan silver dollars: 9,967,762.

Since the NGC has graded nearly 6,000 examples in gem condition, these coins are still quite common (MS-65 or higher). Nearly all of the 5,000,000 silver dollars struck in San Francisco in 1896 found their way into circulation. Many of those who didn’t show signs of wear, primarily from bag storage.

Because the NGC has graded only 19 gem examples of the San Francisco coins from this year, they are scarce compared to the Philadelphia issues.

With only 4,900,000 struck, New Orleans produced the fewest coins. Like the San Francisco coins, higher Uncirculated grades of 1896-O silver dollars are extremely hard to find. Design-wise, Morgan silver dollars from 1896 are typical of the series. With a mass of 26.73g and a diameter of 38.1mm, they are also typical in composition: 90% silver and 10% copper.

1896 Morgan Silver Dollar Grading

It takes a lot of practice to become an expert at grading Morgan silver dollars of all dates and eras. Even seasoned coin collectors may need years to understand a specific coin fully.

The issue is that the grading process and rules are not clearly stated; rather, they are more of a person’s opinion and ability to describe the coin’s condition. Some collectors adhere to some established guidelines, but these guidelines are still not exact and widely acknowledged.

But typically, the outcomes for all of the included collectors are the same or similar. Everyone can undeniably see changes in each 1896 silver dollar, so you can quickly decide whether or not to have rules. That is particularly true when there is a large value difference between the grades.

Over time, most of the numismatists adopted the Sheldon coin grading scale, which is useful for providing accurate coin descriptions. This guide will assist you in comprehending all of those terms as well as the validity of the grading system.

1896 Morgan Silver Dollar Condition

Remember that a coin’s condition plays a big role in determining how much it will cost. However, looking at the date and mint mark on the coin’s surface would be best.

Uncirculated 1896 Morgan Silver Dollar

The 1896 silver dollar can be referred to as uncirculated, which denotes that it has not been used in commerce. It shouldn’t show any signs of wear and should appear brand new.

About Uncirculated 1896 Morgan Silver Dollar

Minor signs of wear are present on one coin in this collection, but the details are still clearly discernible. The blend is minimal to the highest dollar points. Although there is no longer any luster, all minute details are visible.

Extremely Fine 1896 Morgan Silver Dollar

Your 1896 silver dollar will be in extra fine condition if it shows only a few signs of wear while maintaining its sharpness and fine definition. The area behind the Liberty’s ear and the sizable blossoms above are important areas to examine, and they should have barely noticeable signs of light use.

Very Fine 1896 Morgan Silver Dollar

The coin’s overall condition is still quite good, with only minor signs of wear visible. Only minor wear and slight blending on the coin’s edge interfere with the ability to read and identify the lady’s hair details.

Fine 1896 Morgan Silver Dollar

The silver dollar coin’s main points are sufficiently sharp, even though use-related wear is obvious. The hair behind the lady’s ear is the most important area to look at. Except for minor signs of wear, there isn’t much to distinguish coins in extra fine and fine conditions.

Very Good 1896 Morgan Silver Dollar

Although the coin is typically worn down, the design is still there. Significant elements are flat and simple to read, but there aren’t enough details to make them interesting. Only the outer hairline of the lady, along with the coin’s highest points and edges, is clearly defined.

Good 1896 Morgan Silver Dollar

If the surface lines on your 1896 silver dollar fade and become almost invisible, it is in good condition. Despite being worn, the letters on the edge are still legible. These lower-grade coins frequently lack hairlines above the lady’s face. They are usually worth the same as the current silver value when they show signs of excessive usage.

About Good 1896 Morgan Silver Dollar

Even though these coins have numerous flaws and worn markings, the date should still be legible. You can barely make out any details because Liberty’s head is almost smoothed with the surface. Typically, the rim is much nearer the center and blends into the lettering.

1896 Morgan silver dollar value by USA Coin book
Quality18961896 S1896 O
Very good$33$64$37
Very fine$45$82$47
Extra fine$47$243$51
About uncirculated$50$864$179
Mint state 60$60$2,346$1,678
Mint state 65$285$20,039$192,226
Proof 63$3,144//

1896 Morgan Silver Dollar Types

1896 Morgan Silver Dollar Without A Mint Mark

Your silver dollar most likely originates from the Philadelphia mint if no mint mark is visible. No mint mark was required because it was the first and only mint in the US for a very long time. When the government established additional mints, they used a different mint mark to identify the source of each coin. Those from Philadelphia, on the other hand, remained without mint marks. Philadelphia’s mint mark first appeared on a coin in 1942.

1896 Proof Morgan Silver Dollar

This magnificent Superb Gem has superb design elements and high reflectivity. It has a stunning platinum-white color with a faint hint of vanilla tones near the line.

Even the most discerning collectors will be satisfied by the expert craftsmanship of this coin. Morgan’s silver dollars are frequently made from ugly materials, but some of the most beautiful ones were produced between 1896 and 1898. During that time, the Philadelphia mint prepared dies using a particular process. So far as readily available coins go, proof Morgans are the most eye-catching and sought-after by dealers and collectors.

Only seven of these coins have been graded by PCGS in the Deep Cameo class, making them one of the best survivors from this glorious era today. There are currently only 762 coins in existence with this unquestionably remarkable quality.

1896 O Morgan Silver Dollar

The value of an 1896 O Morgan silver dollar is directly related to the price of silver, but its price will also be significantly influenced by its grade, condition, and mintage.

As you are probably aware, the mintage is the number of coins produced, whereas the survival rate is the number of units still in existence. The interrelatedness between these values directly impacts the number of coins in circulation and their price.

The grade will indicate the level of wear and the silver dollar’s condition, which ranges from Basal state 1 to MS 70. For instance, a good 1896 O silver dollar is worth about $30, while an MS 64 coin can be worth up to $40,000.

Since grading services vary in quality, the 1896 O silver dollar’s grade will also depend on the grading institution.

1896 S Morgan Silver Dollar

By the 1950s, almost all 5 million S silver dollars issued in 1896 had been used. Interestingly, until the middle of the 1960s, nobody really paid attention to these coins.

As a result, a sizable portion of the survived coins has numerous marks and usage scratches. Because of this, the late-date San Francisco mintage of the 1896 S Morgan silver dollar is the most appealing. The majority of them have beautiful brilliance and great strikes. Be wary of inexpensive Philadelphia mint coins with a fake S mint mark bonded on fake 1896 S Morgan dollars.

The PCGS estimates approximately 500,000 1896 S silver dollars in all possible grades. Of these coins, only 28,000 are in mint condition, and only 156 have an MS 65 or higher grade.

When you consider that NGC only assigned one 1896 S Morgan dollar in mint condition an MS 67 rating, you can see how uncommon these coins are. One more MS 67 and one extraordinary MS 69 were graded by PCGS.


The 1896 silver dollar is one of the rarer coins. Collectors are willing to pay a premium for pieces in good condition or of a higher grade. A few 1896 silver dollars sold at auction broke impressive records.


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