1982 & 1983 Souvenir Mint Sets...Why the change? *pictures*
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For what ever reason and I have yet to find out exactly why, The Treasury Department and the United States Mint issued the last regular 10 coin mint set in 1981.

 

That was the last year the familiar red boarder cellophane 5 coin pack from Denver and the blue boarder cellophane 5 coin pack from Philadelphia were produced. These two cello packs were combined in one envelope and sold through the channels of the US Mint.

 

Starting 1982 the Mint changed it’s policy and decided to sell individual 5 coin mint packs in separate envelopes at each of the Mints in Denver and Philadelphia. The sets were sold exclusively in the gift shops at those mints with specially prepared envelopes and special mint tokens.

 

 

The following is what was offered starting in 1982 and into 1983.

 

1982, FIVE (5) coin UNCIRCULATED DENVER SOUVENIR US MINT SET

1982Den10.jpg

1982 FIVE (5) coin UNCIRCULATED PHILADELPHIA SOUVENIR US MINT SET.

1982Phil9.jpg

For authenticity, each set did contain a dollar sized mint medal and not the plastic token so common in the aftermarket.

1983 FIVE (5) coin UNCIRCULATED DENVER SOUVENIR US MINT SET

Denver2.jpg

1983 FIVE (5) coin UNCIRCULATED PHILADELPHIA SOUVENIR US MINT SET.

philly1.jpg

 

 

 

 

For those who could not or did not travel to the US Mints located in Philadelphia or Denver, opportunities soon arose in the after market to be able purchase a full set of 1982 uncirculated business strikes. Some of the full sets were sold via advertisements in coin catalogs (pre-internet days) Numismatic news papers and in coin magazines. It allowed collectors a chance to own a complete P & D mint set of uncirculated BU coins for the years 82‘ & 83‘. Krause Publications even sold privately produced sets for collectors and at the time it was well known then that these sets were not the official Souvenir Sets offered by the US Mints but contained uncirculated business strike coins from the P & D mints for that year.

 

Now 25 years later these privately produced sets are being offered as a rare collectable. They may be rare in the market place but the value place on them should not be any where near the prices realized for the authentic US Mint Souvenir Sets for those 2 years.

 

 

 

The term "uncirculated" may have three different meanings when applied to a coin.

 

First, it can refer to the particular manufacturing process by which a coin is made.

 

Second, it can be used as a grade when referring to a coin's degree of preservation and quality of the strike.

 

Or third, "uncirculated" can point to the fact that a coin has not been used in everyday commerce.

 

At the United States Mint, they use the term uncirculated when referring to the special coining process used to make the coin. Uncirculated coins are manufactured using the same process as circulating coins, but with quality enhancements such as slightly higher coining force, early strikes from dies, special cleaning after stamping, and special packaging. Uncirculated coins may vary to some degree because of blemishes, toning, or slight imperfections.

 

 

One thing I noticed right away was the packaging. The US Mint had custom crimped pockets for the different size coins where the after mint private products all have uniform size crimp pockets for the large and small coins and for the token.

19823.jpgPrivate Market

 

19825.jpgPrivate Market

 

19824.jpgPrivate Market

 

19826.jpgPrivate Market

 

 

1984 did see the return of the P & D 10 coin set comprised in a single envelope.

 

Notes/Addendum

 

Both sets P&D for 82’&83’ should never ever come in just one envelope. Original Government Packaging (OGS)on these sets is part of the overall value of collecting Souvenir Sets and should always be included.

1982envelopes.jpgSouvenir Envelopes

 

From the early 60's forward, most US Mint sets will fall within the $30 range limit, with the 2004 set as the exception.

 

At one time, the Souvenir Mint Sets were sold exclusively in the US Mint’s gift shops, but can now be purchased on the secondary market.

 

1982 officially issued UNCIRCULATED, DENVER SOUVENIR US Mint Set, sell for around $75.00, post mint production privately offered may be seen selling from $50 and up.

 

1983 officially issued UNCIRCULATED, DENVER SOUVENIR US Mint Set, sell for around $125.00, post mint production privately offered may be seen from $70 and up.

(these are just round-about figures, you will see varying prices for all)

 

Many on-line auction places like e-bay list Mint/Proof sets together along with sellers who do not know the difference between the two and list a 1982 Mint Set only to find out it is a Proof set or a

Prestige proof set once you review the auction.

 

Some sellers may or may not be aware that these privately produced mint sets were not issued directly by the US Mint but that they are post-mint productions and are not to be misconstrued with Souvenir sets. The envelopes appear to be authentic and most include a token of paper/plastic or bi-metal to denote what branch of mint the coins originated from.

 

 

For authenticity, each UNCIRCULATED DENVER SOUVENIR US Mint set did contain a dollar sized mint medal and not the plastic token so common in the aftermarket private productions.

 

Blue boarder is from Philadelphia Mint

Red boarder is from Denver Mint

19827.jpg1981 Mint Set

 

~Woody~

 

Any suggestions, information, corrections are welcome. I have some feelers out for more information and will inform if any updates are received.

Edited by WoodenJefferson

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323 posts

You could say it was a cost cutting measure that didn't work. David Lange says that the Mint did not include them in their annual budget. Collectors weren't happy, complained and forced the Mint to resume the sets in 1984. smile.gif

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I had one of those aftermarket sets, and they do bring a fairly decent price on Ebay. I think I sold mine about 6 months ago for $130 or so.

 

JJ

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Interesting!

 

I like the medallions included with the souvenier sets.

 

-Amanda

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Woody, this is an outstanding post! Very informative. As mentioned, the mint was trying to cut costs and they were also in the middle of a new commemorative market which ate away at their time.

 

I have the souveneir set from both mints for both years and think that they are excellent collectables.

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There was a very limited number of people complaining but they complained loudly and apparently had the ear of some powerful people. This was one of reagan's cost cutting measures.

 

Mintage on the souvenir sets has been reported as 10,000 for the '82-P, 15,000 for the '83-P and 20,000 for each of the Denver issues. These sets were available by mail but it was not widely known so sales were poor.

 

These were not replacements for regular mint sets. Souvenir sets went into production in 1972 but mintages were only 400. Over the years they waxed and waned but by 1982 it's unlikely any had been over 10,000. Many people who went on the tours of the mints requested examples of the coins being struck so these were offered to them at $4. The coins in these sets are NOT mint set quality. Most of these coins are just selected from among the better coins being made in a given year. They were made up in batches of around 3,000 to 20,000 depending on expected sales. If they ran low then they'd make up a new batch and there would be packaging and other differences. No dollar coins are included in the sets. Incredibly in all the regular souvenir sets made until 1998 there is not a single known variety. It is claimed that many of the later date coins are PL's struck on polished planchets but it would appear mintages crashed because these sets are not seen.

 

There are numerous varieties in the '82 and '83 coinage. None of these appear in the souvenir sets but they do in some of the others. The striped envelope was made by Paul and Judys coins and these sets contain the type "d" reverse quarters of '83 and '83-D sometimes. The wide flat envelope may be the sole source for the '82-D type "d" (in mint sets).

 

The Numismatic News sets are the most common of all these sets and is an excellent source for choice and gem '82-P quarters. The souvenir sets tend to be tough to find choice dimes and quarters but there are some nice '82-D dimes.

 

I don't know who made the first private set pictured here but these are good sources for a few coins. These continued all the way to '86 and there are even '85 sm bust P quarters in some sets. This may be the only source for these in unc.

 

As an aside, there is a variety for the '81 set pictured. About .6% of these have a type "d" reverse quarter.

 

Souvenir sets are a very underappreciated area. There is a specialist for these in Ohio but I've seen little activity for years now. Part of the problem is that the quality is inferior to regular mint sets and the lack of varieties. There real strenght is that there are die pairs represented that aren't available elsewhere. Attrition on these is staggering because they are inexpensive and most are sold to the general public. The packaging is flimsy. As if this weren't bad enough, there are collectors who seek out some of these sets (like the '82 and '83) to cut them up for the coins. Believe it or not dealers used to cut these things up for change for the cash register or to get the medal to sell.

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Thanks for the further input, Cladking. I'm bookmarking this thread because of all the info supplied. thumbsup2.gif

 

I, too, am surprised that they draw such little attention, especially with no official mint sets from those two years.

 

I just saw a souveneir set offered in the marketplace for but $35. That seems dirt cheap to me.

 

Thanks again, guys. Great thread!! 893applaud-thumb.gif

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I think this thread is deserving of What You Need To Know status. Well written, informative, with good pictures.

 

Yes, very informative! Thanks!

 

Chris

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I think this thread is deserving of What You Need To Know status. Well written, informative, with good pictures.

 

I was going to suggest that but I didn't want Hoot to makepoint.gifmakepoint.gifmakepoint.gif my noggin' again 'cause we all know that he has issues with it. tongue.gif

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WoodJeff:

 

I should have stated this in my first post. I just wanted you to know that your pics of the different types of issues is outstanding. Deserves a WYNTK status in my book as well. smile.gif

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WoodJeff:

 

I should have stated this in my first post. I just wanted you to know that your pics of the different types of issues is outstanding. Deserves a WYNTK status in my book as well. smile.gif

 

 

Same here. Those are very impressive pictures of some very hard to find sets. And that '82-P quarter may be the exception to the rule that nice ones aren't be found in the souvenir sets.

 

That flat pack set is extremely low mintage and are very rarely seen. They have proven unsuitable for long term storage so they get torn up and the packaging discarded.

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