In 1976 The United States Mint began to consider abolishing the current large size dollar coinage or making a new coin that was smaller and lighter in weight. Although Eisenhower dollars never widely circulated, the U.S. Mint and The Department of the Treasury was intent on keeping the one-dollar coin.
Watch Now: Everything You Need to Know About the Susan B Anthony Coins
Keeping with the times, it was decided to portray a woman on the new smaller coin. It was decided that Susan B. Anthony, a pioneer of women's rights, would be portrayed on the new coin. Research indicated that the coin could easily be confused with a quarter, so an eleven sided rim was included in the design and a marketing campaign was mounted to educate the public.
All of this was to no avail. The public still confused the new coin with a quarter and it never circulated widely. The reverse used the same design that was used on the previous one-dollar coin, the Eisenhower dollar. No coins were made from 1981 through 1998. However, in 1999 an additional run was made to meet the demands of the vending machine industry. The next year the Sacajawea dollar was introduced. Prices for Susan B. Anthony dollars are affordable for all types of collectors.
|1979 Proof||San Francisco||S||Type 1; Filled S
(Mint mark looks like a blob)
|1979 Proof||San Francisco||S||Type 2; Clear S
(Mint mark is clear and well formed)
|1980 Proof||San Francisco||S|
|1981 Proof||San Francisco||S||Type 1; Clear S
(Mint mark is clear but pointed)
|1981 Proof||San Francisco||S||Type 2; Flat S
(Mint mark is flat on top)
1979 & 1981 Proof Susan B Anthony Dollar Varieties
In 1979 mint marks were still added to coin dies by hand. A mint worker preparing a die to be used at the San Francisco Mint to produce Proof coins broke the metal punch that was used to impart the mint mark into the die. This process involved the worker holding the metal punch on the die while striking it with a heavy hammer. The hard metal that the die is made from caused the mint mark punch to shatter.
A new metal punch used to impart the mint mark into the die was made by an artisan at the mint with a slightly larger and clearer "S." Since this happened near the end of the production run, the Type 2 (clear and well-formed mint mark) is the rarer or of the two types of 1979 proof Susan B. Anthony dollars.
This same sequence of events played out again in 1981 and resulted in two Proof 1981 Susan B. Anthony Dollars types. Look closely at the mint mark before purchasing either coin. Know what the mintmark looks like, so you do not pay a premium for the common coin. The type II coin has a very pronounced bulbous beginning in and to the S mint mark.
Errors and Varieties
The following are popular errors and varieties that Susan B. Anthony (SBA) One Dollar Coin collectors look for. These coins usually carry a premium and are valued above a common coin.
|1979||Philadelphia||P||Wide Rim (or "Near Date")||Date is closer to the rim than previous 1979 issues.|
The following table lists mint production numbers for the number of Susan B. Anthony (SBA) One Dollar Coin produced at each mint facility. Where possible, production numbers by strike type are noted.
|1979 Proof||San Francisco||S||3,677,175||All types|
|1980 Proof||San Francisco||S||3,554,806|
|1981||Philadelphia||P||3,000,000||Issued only in mint sets|
|1981||Denver||D||3,250,000||Issued only in mint sets|
|1981 Proof||San Francisco||S||4,063,083||All types|
|1981||San Francisco||S||3,492,000||Issued only in mint sets|
- Walter Breen's Complete Encyclopedia of U.S. and Colonial Coins; Walter Breen; Publisher: Doubleday; 1 edition (May 1, 1988); ISBN-13: 978-0385142076
- The Cherrypickers' Guide to Rare Die Varieties, 5th Edition, Volume 2; Fivaz, Bill and J.T. Stanton; Publisher: Whitman Publishing, Atlanta (2009); ISBN-13: 978-0794832391
- History Of The United States Mint and Its Coinage, Whitman Publishing Llc; 1ST edition (April 30, 2005), ISBN-10 0794819729, ISBN-13 978-0794819729
- A Guide Book of United States Proof Sets 2nd Edition (Official Red Books), Whitman Publishing; 2 edition (June 1, 2010), ISBN-10: 0794828604, ISBN-13: 978-0794828608