Key Date Gold & Silver American Eagles
Whether you’re just getting started or looking to expand, key date gold and silver American Eagle coins are a great addition to any collection. In some cases, the dates are nearly impossible to acquire because of the demand.
That’s why it’s all the more important that you keep the key dates in mind. You never know when the opportunity to buy one will strike!
Key Date Gold American Eagles
American Gold Eagle coins came onto the scene in 1986 after other modern series entered the ring for private gold ownership. Though there were countless gold coin series worldwide, the American Gold Eagle was the first of its kind in the U.S. It was the only modern gold bullion coin guaranteed by the U.S. government at that time.
You can identify an American Gold Eagle coin by the classic Augustus Saint-Gaudens $20 “Double Eagle” design. The reverse side has a “Family of Eagles” design, which was original to the series. It was stamped for 35 years until it was replaced with the newest design in 2021.
While many of these coins make great additions to your collection or investment portfolio, the following categories feature key date coins:
- Bullion Gold Eagle Mintages
- Proof American Gold Eagles
- Burnished Gold Eagles
- New Gold American Eagles
Key Date Bullion American Gold Eagles
If you are interested in collecting American Eagle gold bullion coins, we recommend categorizing Gold Eagle mintage by year. The following dates are the most highly sought-after by serious collectors:
- 1986 Gold Eagle Bullion Coins: These are the first bullion coins with the Augustus Saint-Gaudens Double Eagle mintages.
- 1991 1/2 oz. Gold Eagle: This coin remains the lowest mintage Gold Eagle for the bullion series.
- 1999 1/10 and 1/4 oz. Gold Eagles: This pair of coins set themselves apart because they were struck at the West Point Mint with unfished proof dies, so they never received their final polish.
- 2014 & 2015 1/10 oz. Gold Eagles: These coins have narrower reeding than the standard coin. The 2014 coins are the less common of the two, so they often go for higher prices.
Key Date Proof American Gold Eagles
2020 Proof Gold Eagles with V75 Privy are the only significant coins from the Proof Series. For Gold Eagle proofs, it’s hard to pin down key dates because there is so much fluctuation in the lowest mintages and sales.
However, this particular coin is the first American Gold Eagle to feature a privy mark honoring the 75th Anniversary of the Allied Victory. The mintage limit was set to 1,945 to recognize the end of WW2, so it is the lowest mintage to date.
Key Burnished Gold Eagle Mintage Dates
The Burnished subset of Gold Eagle coins is created using both dies and planchets designed to make a frosty appearance. These coins were first struck in 2006 in 4 different sizes, but production was paused in 2009-2010. When they resumed, they were only struck in 1 oz sizes. Therefore, these are the key days for burnished coins:
- 2008 Burnished 1/4 oz. Gold Eagle
- 2017 Burnished 1 oz. Gold Eagle and Beyond
New American Gold Eagle Mintage Dates
As we mentioned, the American Gold Eagle had the “Family of Eagles” design since its inception. It was replaced mid-production in 2021 and remains the same throughout 2022 Gold Eagle mintage. For that reason, there are two different types of 2021 coins.
- 2021 Type 1 Gold Eagle Design: As the last year of issue for the original design, the Type 1 Gold Eagles are significant to coin collectors.
- 2021 Type 2 Gold Eagle Design: Similarly, the first year of issue for the new “Eagle Profile” gives this coin more interest. It features a side-profile of an Eagles head and slight modifications to the obverse Double Eagle design.
Key Date American Silver Eagles
Similar to gold coins, many countries offer silver bullion coins. However, the American Silver Eagle is a staple to many collectors around the globe because it is the only annual silver bullion coin backed by the U.S. Government.
It was also introduced in 1986 and produced annually except for two years. Since the Silver Eagle mintage by year varies, some issues of coins are more desirable. In fact, the series below have many key dates that avid collectors have yet to track down:
- Bullion Silver Eagle Mintages
- Proof Silver Eagles
- Burnished Silver Eagles
Key Date Bullion Silver Eagles
From production problems to a global pandemic, many unique circumstances helped to create this list of key date bullion coins:
- 1986 Silver Eagle
- 1994 Silver Eagle
- 1996 Silver Eagle
- 2015 (P) Silver Eagle
- 2020 (P) Emergency Production Silver Eagle
Key Date Proof Silver Eagles
Unlike the Gold Eagles, there are more key dates for Silver Eagle Proof Coins, including:
- 1993 Silver Eagle: Since the US Mint moved production from San Francisco to Philadelphia this year, it was the lowest amount of standard Silver Eagle proof coins.
- 1994 Proof Silver Eagle: Low sales led to even fewer Proof coins being produced in 1994, and it became the new lowest mintage Silver Eagle proof set.
- 1995-W Proof Silver Eagle: Some refer to this as the “King of American Silver Eagles” because only around 30,000 are available to collectors. It was initially sold in the 10th Anniversary Set.
Key Burnished Silver Eagle Mintage Dates
These Silver Eagles are relatively new to the scene, so it is difficult to say whether these key dates will remain on collectors’ radars beyond the 2022 Silver Eagle mintage. For now, people are seeking:
- 2017 Burnished Silver Eagle
- 2018 Burnished Proof Silver Eagle
Start Investing in Key Date Gold and Silver American Eagles
Would you like to start tracking down any of these key dates for your collection? Are you interested in any other American Eagle coins? If you answered yes to either question, you should reach out to International Precious Metals right away. You can call, use our online chatbox, or fill out our contact form to request more information on our inventory.
For more palladium news and other great reports on the industry, check out other great articles at IPM, including How Much Is A Gold American Eagle Coin Worth, Investing In US Mint Coins, & The Most Valuable Coins In Circulation.