Philadelphia Mint Intro


The Philadelphia Mint was the very first United States Mint and dates to the Coinage Act of 1792 which established both the United States Mint as well as money standards for the United States. The Olde Mint (original Mint) was the very first new building constructed by the United States Government. By the time silver ingots began production at the United States Mint Philadelphia in 1946, they were in the third building pictured above, where operations began in 1901.

A very interesting look at the history of the third Philadelphia Mint building, now occupied by the Community College of Philadelphia, can be found on their website at

Without United States Mint Philadelphia records, a completely accurate story of silver ingots produced there is impossible to tell, but given the extreme rarity of United States Mint Philadelphia silver ingots, some of the stories I have heard over the years are very believable.  I’ve always heard that production was very limited which is supported by the extremely low number of examples in circulation and the span of serial numbers in the registry that only range from No. 3 to No. 308. Another story I’ve heard is that distribution was limited to licensed dealers and jewelers. This story, while not substantiated, is supported by the lack of any information about ingot sales or distribution like what can be documented from both the U.S. Mint San Francisco and New York Assay Office.

The majority of United States Mint Philadelphia silver ingots are dated; dates that I have seen so far include 1946, 1956 and 1960. Three different hallmarks can be found on U.S. Mint Philadelphia silver ingots dated 1946 and I’ve identified them as Type I, II and III, based on their appearance in numerical sequence of first year's ingot serial numbers.

 See other pages under the Philadelphia drop-down for a look at U.S. Mint Philadelphia silver ingots in more detail.