Adam Starkey

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Eisenhower Dollars

The Eisenhower dollar was produced from 1971 to 1978 and was the first dollar coin issued since the Peace dollar ended in 1935. In October of 1969, a bill was introduced calling for a circulating commemorative dollar to honor President Eisenhower and the Apollo XI space flight. Due to rising bullion prices, silver had been eliminated from the dime and quarter in 1965 and reduced to 40% in the half dollar, with plans to remove silver from all circulating coins in 1971. The Eisenhower dollar was struck in both copper-nickel for circulation and 40% silver as a collectible. The design features a left-facing profile of the late president on the obverse and an American eagle descending onto the moon on the reverse. The distant Earth is visible in the sky above. Although the Eisenhower silver dollar versions sold well and were coveted by collectors, the new copper-nickel dollar coins failed to circulate extensively, and the series was short-lived. Congress replaced the Eisenhower dollar with the smaller-sized Susan B. Anthony dollar in 1979, which also failed to circulate. The Eisenhower dollar coin would ultimately go down in history as the last large-sized dollar issued for circulation in the United States, marking the end of a two-century-old tradition.

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