Welcome to the latest “Budget Silver Coins for the Casual Collector.” For this feature, I go through our inventory at Gainesville Coins and find some older inexpensive silver coins, with a view towards recommending them for the beginning collector as an introduction to world coins. These coins would also make a nice gift for the casual coin collector.
I’ve chosen one coin under $5, two coins between $5 and $10, and a coin between $10 and $15. Please keep in mind that the price of these coins will fluctuate slightly with the spot price of silver, but they should remain in the ranges I’ve chosen. I’ve tried to mix up the countries of origin, to keep things interesting. The sub- $5 category is getting pretty thin, so next week we may move our brackets up by five dollars each.
This week we travel to Mexico in the sub-$5 section, with the 1957-1967 Mexican Silver 1 Peso coin. These coins were minted between 1953 and 1966. The reverse of this coin features José Maria Morelos, hero of the Mexican War of Independence, wearing the bandana that was the hallmark of revolutionary troops (since they had no uniforms.) The obverse has the coat of arms of Mexico, with the date and denomination. Instead of a reeded edge, this coins has the words INDEPENDENCIA Y LIBERTAD engraved on the edge. This is a rather large coin, measuring 34.5 mm, but the cheap price is explained by the fact that is is only 10% silver, with an ASW of 0.0514 ozt.
In the $5-$10 category this week, we travel from one end of the British Commonwealth to the other. We start with the George V British Florin/2 Shilling silver coin. George V was King of Great Britain from 1910 to his death in 1936. The obverse of this coin features the King’s left profile with the Latin titles of King of Great Britain and Emperor of India. The reverse features the crowned shields of kingdoms of England on top and bottom, Ireland to the left, and Scotland to the right. Scepters between the shields form a diagonal cross. The denomination of One Florin appears across the top, and the date is divided at bottom by the bottom of the shield. Like most British coins of this era, this 28.3mm coin is made of sterling silver (925 fineness.) The ASW is .18 ozt.
The second coin in this category this week is the Australia 1 Shilling of 1938-1944. These war-time shillings featured the bust of King George VI on obverse, and a ram on reverse with AUSTRALIA, the denomination, and date. These 24 mm coins weigh 5.65 grams, are made of 295 fineness sterling silver, and have an ASW of .17ozt.
For the $10-$15 category, we have the silver French 5 Franc coin of 1960-1969. Hailing from the final era of French circulating silver coins, the 19 mm 5 franc coin was made of 835 fineness silver with an ASW of .3221 ozt. The obverse shows the goddess of Prosperity sowing a field, with the legend “Republique Francaise”. The reverse shows the bounty of the harvest, with twigs of native fruits and grains. Above the bundle is the denomination, and below is the date. Across the top of the border is French national motto ” LIBERTE EGALITE FRATERNITE.”
Remember, if a date range is listed for a coin, the date you receive will be chosen at random from the inventory we have at-hand. We have many older silver coins in small denominations available. You could go through our stock and pick out several coins as a gift for about the same price you’d pay for a video game. This link will take you to a list of silver items we have in stock, sorted by price, so you can choose the ones you like best.