San Francisco Mint

The San Francisco Mint is a branch of the United States Mint and was opened in 1854 to serve the gold mines of the California Gold Rush. It quickly outgrew its first building and moved into a new one in 1874. When they outgrew the old building, they moved to the current building in 1937.

United States Mint (San Francisco)
NRIS 88000026 Mint Building - Duboce St Elevation.jpg
The San Francisco Mint building, built in 1937
San Francisco Mint is located in San Francisco County
San Francisco Mint
San Francisco Mint is located in California
San Francisco Mint
San Francisco Mint is located in the United States
San Francisco Mint
LocationHermann and Buchanan Streets, San Francisco, California
Coordinates37°46′12″N 122°25′38″W / 37.7701°N 122.4273°W / 37.7701; -122.4273Coordinates: 37°46′12″N 122°25′38″W / 37.7701°N 122.4273°W / 37.7701; -122.4273
Built1937
ArchitectGilbert Stanley Underwood
Architectural styleStripped Classicism
NRHP reference No.88000026
Added to NRHPFebruary 18, 1988

HistoryEdit

The San Francisco mint opened in 1854. Within the first year of its operation, the San Francisco mint turned $4 million in gold bullion into coins. In 1873 it was moved to another building.

Former BuildingEdit

See more: Old San Francisco Mint

 
The Old San Francisco Mint building.

The second building, completed in 1874, was designed by Alfred B. Mullett in a conservative Greek Revival style with a sober Doric order. The building had a central pedimented portico flanked by projecting wings in an E-shape; it was built around a completely enclosed central courtyard that contained a well—the features that saved it during the fire of 1906, when the heat melted the plate glass windows and exploded sandstone and granite blocks with which it was faced. The building sat on a concrete and granite foundation, designed to thwart tunneling into its vaults, which at the time of the 1906 fire held $300 million, fully a third of the United States' gold reserves. Efforts by Superintendent of the Mint, Frank A. Leach, and his men preserved the building and the bullion that then backed the nation's currency. The mint resumed operation soon thereafter, continuing until 1937.

Current buildingEdit

The new Mint was opened in 1937. Beginning in 1955, circulating coinage from San Francisco was suspended for 13 years. In 1968, it took over most proof coinage production from the Philadelphia Mint, but continued striking a supplemental circulating coinage from 1968 through 1974. Since 1975, the San Francisco Mint has been used almost exclusively for proof coinage, with the exception of the Susan B. Anthony dollar from 1979–81, a portion of the mintage of cents in the early 1980s, and circulation-strike America the Beautiful quarters marked with an "S" mintmark and only issued for collectors since 2012. The dollars and quarters bear a mintmark of an "S", but the cents are otherwise indistinguishable from those minted at Philadelphia (which bear no mintmarks, unlike those years' proof cents from San Francisco and circulation cents from Denver).

From 1962 to 1988, the San Francisco Mint was officially an assay office; the San Francisco Assay Office was granted mint status again on March 31, 1988 (Pub.L. 100–274).[1] The San Francisco Mint is located at 155 Hermann Street, but only admits visitors on rare exception. On May 15, 1987, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Mint, a limited number of people were allowed to tour the facility. This tour was advertised in the San Francisco Chronicle newspaper, with a phone number to call to reserve a spot.


CommemorativesEdit

Dollar (Gold)
United States
Value5 U.S. Dollar
Mass8.359 g
Diameter.850 Inches mm
Thickness? mm
EdgeReeded
Composition90%Gold/10%Alloy
Years of minting2006
Catalog number?
Obverse
 
DesignThe "Granite Lady" San Francisco Old Mint. Inscriptions: '1906-2006', 'Liberty', E Pluribus Unum' & 'San Francisco Earthquake and Fire Centennial'
DesignerCharles L. Vickers
Design date2006
Reverse
 
DesignA replica of the 1906 Half-Eagle Coronet Liberty eagle reverse. Inscriptions: 'United States of America', 'In God We Trust', & 'Five D.'
DesignerChristian Gobrecht
Design date2006
Dollar (Silver)
United States
Value1 U.S. Dollar
Mass? g
Diameter38.1 mm
Thickness? mm
EdgeReeded
Composition90%Ag/10%Cu
Years of minting2006
Catalog number?
Obverse
DesignOld Mint "The Granite Lady", Instrumental in San Francisco's Recovery, 1906-2006, E Pluribus Unum, Liberty
DesignerSherl J. Winter
Design date2005/6?
Reverse
DesignReplica of the Morgan Silver Dollar Rev; United States of America, One Dollar, In God We Trust
DesignerGeorge T. Morgan
Design date1904

San Francisco Old Mint GoldEdit

In 2006, the United States Mint released a gold five dollar commemorative coin which commemorates the 100th year after the old San Francisco mint survived an earthquake. The mint also played a part in the city's recovery after the earthquake, providing shelter for many as it was one of the few buildings left standing.

The coin was minted as both a proof coin and an uncirculated coin, and is no longer available directly from the United States Mint. On June 15, 2006, President George W. Bush signed Public Law 109-230, legislation authorizing the production of the 2006 San Francisco $5 commemorative gold coin as well as its $1 silver counterpart. The production of the $5 denomination was limited to a maximum mintage of 100,000 coins, but separate mintage figures for each of the proof and uncirculated coins have not yet been released. The $1 silver version was limited to only 500,000 coins, both in proof and uncirculated products, but distinct mintage figures for both products has not been officially stated.

The reverse was designed by Christian Gobrecht and sculpted by Joseph Menna.

Features

  • Coin Finishes: proof, and uncirculated
  • Maximum Mintage: 100,000 - The final mintages were 16,938 uncirculated, and 47,275 proof.
  • United States Mint Facility: San Francisco (S)
  • Public Law: 109-230

San Francisco Old Mint SilverEdit

In 2006, the United States Mint released a silver dollar commemorative coin which commemorates the 100th anniversary of the survival of the old San Francisco mint in the 1906 San Francisco earthquake.

The mint also played a part in the city's recovery after the earthquake.

The coin was sold as both as a proof coin and an uncirculated coin, with a maximum coinage of 500,000 coins.

Features
This coin has a design of the old San Francisco mint on the obverse and a replica of the 1904 eagle design on the reverse.

  • Coin Finishes: proof, and uncirculated
  • Maximum Mintage: 500,000 (at the time)
  • United States Mint Facility: San Francisco (s)
  • Public Law: 109-230

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Timeline of the United States Mint". United States Mint. Retrieved April 20, 2010.

External linksEdit