Posted on February 15, 2021
No coin collection is complete without a 1921 Morgan silver dollar. This coin has a significant economical and political history that makes it one of the most sought-after United States coins. Take a look at this quick history and overview to get acquainted with the 1921 Morgan silver dollar.
There are a few different factors that make the 1921 Morgan silver dollar special, including:
The Morgan silver dollar series has a rich history that makes them particularly attractive to collectors. The series culminated with the 1921 Morgan dollar, which was the final mintage for the coin.
The United States has a rocky relationship with silver. In 1783, Thomas Jefferson developed a national coinage based on the Spanish silver dollar. The United States Congress adopted this system in 1785, but the country wasn't able to start producing its own coinage until the Mint Act of 1792. This act established the U.S. Mint in Philadelphia, naming the silver dollar as the silver coin with the highest denomination.
In 1794, the U.S. produced its first silver dollars, which failed. Merchants preferred Spanish silver dollars, which were heavier and more familiar, and sold U.S. silver dollars overseas. Production of silver dollars stopped in 1804, though Congress brought it back in 1836. They were official U.S. currency, but the silver dollars were mostly vaulted, melted down, or sold overseas. Production stopped again in 1873.
Like many American dollar coins during the 19th and 20th centuries, the Morgan silver dollar was never a popular currency. Production of the first Morgan dollars occurred from 1878 to 1904. The Morgan silver dollars were a result of the 1878 Bland-Allison Act, which reestablished silver as legal tender in the United States. This act required the government to mint 2 million silver dollars per month. 
In 1904, the production of the Morgan silver dollar ceased because of the depletion of the silver bullion supply and Comstock Lode. The popularity of the paper dollar was another factor in the cessation of the silver dollar. In 1918, Congress passed the Pittman Act. This act required the government to melt down older, largely uncirculated Morgan dollars in the United States Treasury vaults and buy more silver to replace them.
The Morgan silver dollar was revived for one more run in 1921 before the series was replaced by the Peace silver dollar. It was designed and engraved by its namesake, George T. Morgan.
In 1942, even more Morgan silver dollars were melted down as a result of the Wartime Silver Act. Between 1979 and 1980, millions of coins were melted down. It's now fairly difficult to accurately estimate how many Morgan silver dollars exist today. Though the 1921 Morgan silver dollar is the most common version of the coin, its numbers have dwindled as a result of mass melting.
There are a few distinguishing features of the 1921 Morgan Silver Dollar that make it particularly valuable.
Depending on the features that your particular silver dollar bears, its value can differ widely. However, the coin's value effectively relies on two properties:
A mint-condition, uncirculated 1921 Morgan silver dollar is worth around $56, especially versions with mint marks. A coin with the lowest 'good' rating is worth $29.  The higher the quality of a 1921 Morgan silver dollar, the more appealing it will be to collectors. The auction record for a rare mint-condition 1921 silver dollar is $19,975. The auction record for a 1921-D Morgan silver dollar was $44,063. 
An attractive aspect of the 1921 Morgan silver dollar is that it is an accessible and worthwhile pursuit for both collectors and investors. Some silver dollars in decent condition are affordable, and some can sell for a nice profit.
Regardless of monetary worth, the 1921 silver dollar has a nostalgic place in United States history, and it makes for an appealing addition to any person's coin collection.
1. GovMint. 'Morgan Silver Dollar Coins,' https://www.govmint.com/morgan-silver-dollar. Accessed Sept. 3, 2020.
2. USA Coin Book. '1921 Morgan Dollars,' https://www.usacoinbook.com/coins/3300/dollars/morgan/1921-P/. Accessed Sept. 3, 2020.
3. Collectors Universe, Inc. 'PCGS Auction Prices, Morgan Dollar, 1921 Morgan MS,' https://www.pcgs.com/auctionprices/details/1921-morgan-ms/97297. Accessed Sept. 3, 2020.