Morgan Versus Peace Dollars: In Search of the Best Silver Dollar
For investors looking for a new way to put their money into beautiful bullion, silver dollars are an excellent choice. In the United States, the bulk of silver dollars belong to two distinct groups: Morgan and Peace Dollars.
Some coin collectors have trouble choosing between these silver dollars. That’s why we’re here! Today, the Bullion Academy is comparing Morgan versus Peace Dollars to figure out which is the better investment.
Morgan and Peace Dollars are both good investments. While some investors prefer the historically and culturally important designs of the Peace Dollar, the classic look of the Morgan continues to wow investors to this day.
In this guide, we’ll walk readers through everything they need to know when deciding between Morgan versus Peace Dollars.
Should You Invest in Silver Dollars?
We’ll start with the basics: are silver dollars a good investment? The answer to this question depends, of course, on your own investment objectives and preferences. We generally find that silver dollars are a great investment for numismatic coin collectors.
Numismatic collectors prefer to invest in coins that have high value aside from their precious metal content. While bullion coins like the American Silver Eagle feature a degree of numismatic value, they’re not nearly the collectible treasures that Peace and Morgan Dollars are.
Reasons to Buy Silver Dollars
To give you a better idea of whether or not silver dollars are for you, let’s take a look at three of the main reasons people invest in silver dollars. Don’t worry – we’ll spend some time comparing Morgan versus Peace Dollars later in this guide.
For now, you should know that there are three main advantages to investing in silver dollars: beautiful designs, historical context, and high silver content. Together, these benefits help to make silver dollars one of the most popular methods of investing in silver bullion.
There’s no denying the beauty of American silver dollars. Regardless of where you stand on the Morgan versus Peace Dollars debate, these coins offer an antique, classic look that very few modern coins provide.
Morgan Dollars are some of the earliest silver dollars mass produced by the U.S. Mint, and its obverse artwork helped to make Lady Liberty into a fixture of American coinage. Peace Dollars, on the other hand, also have quite a bit to offer the modern coin collector.
The Peace Dollar was released on the heels of World War One, and some of the bold design choices on Lady Liberty help to celebrate the relative peace the U.S. experienced prior to the outbreak of WW2.
When we compare Morgan versus Peace Dollars, it’s important to remember that both coins show off some of the U.S. Mint’s very best artwork.
Like we mentioned above, many collectors love silver dollars because of the important historical context behind them. Morgans were one of the first silver dollars mass produced by the United States, and Peace Dollars pay aesthetic homage to peacetimes following the victory of Allied forces in World War One.
It’s hard to separate these coins from their historical context. Whether you prefer Morgan versus Peace Dollars, you’re sure to get a certified antique from an earlier era of American history when you invest in American silver dollars.
High Silver Content
For a long period of time, all American coins were minted with actual silver bullion. This isn’t the case anymore; circulated silver stopped being minted with actual silver in 1964. Today, these coins are made using an alloy of far more inexpensive metals.
But for Morgan and Peace Dollars, silver content was standardized at 90%. This means that both Morgan and Peace Dollars will contain .90 fine silver bullion.
This is another big reason why investors love putting their money into silver dollars. Aside from beautiful designs and interesting historical contexts, silver dollars are minted with actual, valuable silver bullion.
Comparing Morgan and Peace Dollars
Morgan versus Peace Dollars: which is the better investment? The answer to this question depends on your own investment goals and preferences. Some investors love the classic, historically essential Morgan Dollar. Others prefer the clean lines and intricately detailed look of the Peace Dollar.
Both coins are classic works of art featuring pure silver bullion, but they also appear shockingly modern in their designs.
While we can’t help you decide on Morgan versus Peace Dollars, we can make your job a little easier by providing some basic points of comparison for these classic American silver dollars.
We’ll start with the Morgan. Morgan Dollars were minted from 1878 to 1904, and then given a single restrike in 1921. As the first standardized silver bullion dollar minted following 1873’s Coinage Act, the Morgan Dollar is incredibly important to American coinage history.
To get a better comparison of Morgan versus Peace Dollars, we’ll explore the coin’s designs/specs and investment potential below.
Designs and Specifications
Like all other silver dollars produced during this American era, the Morgan Silver Dollar features 90% fine silver bullion. Given the coin’s total weight of 26.73 grams, this puts the silver content of the Morgan Dollar at just above 24g.
The obverse of the coin was designed by legendary mint engraver George T. Morgan. It depicts Lady Liberty, who had already become one of the most enduring symbols of the United States during the late 19th century. For this coin, Morgan chose Anna Willess Williams as his model. Lady Liberty wears a bonnet, as well as a “Liberty” headband.
On the reverse of the coin, you’ll find one of the original American eagle depictions in American coinage history. Here, the eagle is skinnier than you’ll find on modern coins. In its talons, the animal holds a bundle of arrows and an olive branch. Surrounding the eagle is a wreath, which would go on to become another common symbol on American coins.
Morgans are instantly recognizable pieces of American history, and they’ve been popular among coin collectors for generations. We consider the Morgan Dollar a good investment for two main reasons: numismatics and silver content.
It’s easiest to start by explaining the obvious: Morgan Dollars contain .90 fine silver bullion. Therefore, you can profit by buying Morgan Dollars and reselling them when the value of silver increases enough to offset the premium you paid for each coin in your collection.
But Morgan Dollars are valuable for more than just their silver melt value. These coins are highly collectable. If you’re able to get your hands on a coin from a low mintage year, they can appreciate considerably in value over time.
The Peace Dollar, in many ways, capitalized on the existing popularity of the Morgan Dollar. The latter coin had become a relatively common collector’s item, and investors of the time period had just begun seriously stacking silver when the Peace Dollar was released.
Numismatists and coin enthusiasts had petitioned the U.S. government to release a silver dollar that would celebrate the Allied victory in World War One. While no law made it mandatory for the U.S. Mint to do so, they ended up equivocating, giving us the Peace Dollar investors know and love.
This brings us to the Peace Dollar’s design. When we compare Morgan versus Peace Dollars, it’s important to note that both coins come with some of the most beautiful designs in American coinage history.
On the obverse of this historically essential American coin, you’ll find yet another reimagining of Lady Liberty. Mint artist Anthony de Francisci chose to use his wife, Teresa de Francisci, as the model for Liberty. He kept the windows open in his studio, allowing the wind to give Mrs. Francisci the flowing hair she’s known for on the coin.
She also wears a crown. The spikes on her classic crown almost look like sun rays, which mirrors the design on the reverse of the coin.
Speaking of the reverse, Anthony de Francisci put yet another unique spin on classic American iconography with his new silver dollar coin. Here, America’s bald eagle perches on a cliff overlooking a rising sun.
On both the obverse and reverse of the Peace Dollar, it’s clear that the U.S. Mint sought to commemorate one of humanity’s most important victories. The elation of peace following World War One practically exudes from this coin.
The Peace Dollar remains one of the most popular numismatic coins for a reason. For decades, both amateur historians and professional numismatists have loved stacking Peace Dollars. Because of this coin’s unique position in American history, it’s no surprise that many investors consider it a great option for stacking silver.
Are Morgan or Peace Dollars the Better Investment?
It’s hard to make a direct comparison between Morgan versus Peace Dollars. These coins are both popular numismatic coins with brilliant designs, historical importance, and real silver bullion.
However, we can highlight a few areas where the coins can be contrasted. By the end of this subsection, you should have a relatively good idea of whether you prefer Morgan or Peace Dollars.
Morgan and Peace Dollars both come with fantastic, beautiful designs. We can’t quite say that these coins feature the same intricacy of modern coins, such as the American Silver Eagle. However, fans of silver dollars believe that these coins offer a more classic, vintage look.
There’s nothing wrong with buying modern bullion coins. However, we do find that some investors like to use silver dollars to pad their collections with a little bit of diversity.
Since these coins are both visually distinct from modern bullion coins and uniquely poised to be numismatic investments, Morgan and Peace Dollars are a great choice if you want to diversify your precious metal portfolio.
Personal Preference Plays a Role
Clearly, we can’t decide for you whether Morgan or Peace Dollars are more beautiful. It all comes down to personal preference. Some investors prefer the classic, original look of the Morgan Dollar. For other numismatists, there’s no beating the uniquely historical and shockingly relevant design choices that characterize the Peace Dollar.
We suggest taking a closer look at BU Morgan and Peace Silver Dollars. Comparing how both coin types look can help you decide which one might look better on your shelves.
At the end of the day, you really can’t go wrong with Morgan versus Peace Dollars. Both coins are beautiful relics from a bygone era of American coinage. Whether you stack exclusively Morgans, only Peace Dollars, or a mix of both, you’re buying into a classic tradition in American coin collecting.
Prior to 1964, American silver dollars featured a standardized silver purity of 90 percent. This means that you can expect to find the same amount of silver in every release of either coin.
There is one exception to this rule: the 2023 Morgan and Peace Silver Dollar Set. These coin sets were released in 2023 and feature a purity of .999. This is a one-off set, and we don’t appreciate more of these sets coming out in the future.
But for most releases of Morgan and Peace Dollars, silver content is standardized at 90%.
Morgan Versus Peace Dollars: Which Has More Silver?
Both the Morgan Dollar and the Peace Dollar contain .90 pure silver. In other words, each coin from either series will be minted using 90% silver bullion. The rest of the coin’s metal content is copper, which helps to make the coins a bit more durable and harder to damage.
If you’re a seasoned silver stacker, buying low premium Morgan and Peace Dollars is always a good idea.
Bottom Line: Comparing Morgan Versus Peace Dollars
Morgan versus Peace Dollars: which is the best silver investment? At the end of the day, it comes down to personal preference. Only you can decide which coin is better for your silver stack.
The good news? You really can’t go wrong. Both the Morgan and Peace Dollar are minted with high purity silver, feature beautiful designs, and remind investors of a beautiful, classic era of American coinage history.
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About The Author
Michael Roets is a writer and journalist for Hero Bullion. His work explores precious metals news, guides, and commentary.