$1 Gold Coins

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  1. Type 1 Liberty Head Gold Dollar - VG+ - Obverse

    Liberty Head Gold Dollar (Type 1, Low Premium) 1849-1854


    Smallest Gold Coin Issued by the US Mint | Condition Between VG and XF | Dates Chosen at Random from Our Inventory: 1849-1854 Buy Now
  2. Large Head Indian Princess Gold Dollar - VG+ - Obverse

    Indian Princess Gold Dollar (Type 3, Low Premium) 1856-1889


    Final Variety of US $1 Gold Coin | Condition Between VG and XF | Dates Chosen at Random from Our Inventory: 1856-1889 Buy Now

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See All Historic Gold Coins


Buy $1 Gold Coins Online

Produced by the United States Mint from 1849 until 1889, the $1 Gold Coin was the smallest-diameter coin ever produced in the United States. Three major types of the $1 Gold Dollar Coin were issued, all designed by James Longacre. The inception year of 1849 is no accident and coincides with the California Gold Rush, when an increased supply of gold bullion was now available.

In the early years, the $1 Gold Dollars readily circulated, as their silver counterparts were often hoarded or exported. After 1853, silver coins were lightened and began to circulate more freely, causing the $1 Gold Dollar to hardly circulate at all. The economic disruption of the US Civil War (during which time most coinage was hoarded) spelled the beginning of the end of the $1 Gold Coin. Gold coinage hardly circulated again until 1879, though even then in small numbers. The $1 Gold Coin saw low mintages until 1889, when Congress stopped the series.

Buy $1 Gold Coins - Type 1 Design

The Type One $1 Gold Coin depicts a head Liberty, facing left, and surrounded by 13 stars, representing the original 13 colonies. Contemporary reviews of the coin were generally favorable. Dies were sent from Philadelphia to several branch mints, in order to begin series production of the new coin. During this time period, the melt value of silver exceeded the face value of US silver coinage, so silver coins were exported and disappeared from general use. Therefore, the early $1 US Gold Dollar coins remained the only coin in circulation with a value greater than the cent and less than the Gold Quarter Eagle coins. Not until 1853 (when the silver content of silver coins was lessened) did silver again circulate, eliminating much of the need for the $1 Gold Coins.

Buy $1 Gold Coins - Type 2 and Type 3 Design

Attempting to overcome criticisms that the $1 Gold Coin was too small and easily lost, the US Mint redesigned the $1 Gold Coin. Called the Type 2 $1 Gold Coin, they were only struck between 1854 and 1856, the short production run being due to the difficulties in physically manufacturing the coins. The new design shows a Native American Princess on the obverse, wearing a feathered headdress. The reverse depicts an agricultural wreath, similar to the design used on the $3 US Gold Coin. This wreath would also be used on the Flying Eagle Small Cent.

Buying $1 Gold Dollar Coins Online

Production ceased after 1889. In 1890, Congress abolished the $1 Gold Coin, the 3-Cent Nickel, and and the Gold $3 Coin. Even in the late 1800's, collectors were buying $1 Gold Dollar coins due to their rarity. Today, they remain a numismatic specialty among many collectors. During the last decades of its existence, the Gold Dollar Coins hardly circulated - -instead, they were bought by collectors and gift givers, as the coin was often incorporated into jewelry or given as birthday presents.