The United States Manila Mint: A Type Set of the Coins & Medals of America's Forgotten Mint
Bill Weber Collection pedigreed Wilson Dollar.





Coin Details

Origin/Country: United States PHILIPPINES
Full Grade: NGC MS 62
Owner: JAA

Owner Comments:

So-Called Dollar, 1920 (M) HK-449 Wilson Dollar. Silver 38.2mm, 440 grains, medal commemorating the opening of the Manila Mint.

The dies for the " Wilson Dollar" were cut by George Morgan, who was the Mint's Chief Engraver in 1920, and who was also responsible for the U.S. Morgan Silver Dollar.

The obverse presents a well executed portrait of U.S. President Woodrow Wilson.

The reverse shows a representation of "Juno Moneta" (the goddess of money and minting) kneeling and watching over a nude youth who is pouring planchets (coin blanks) into a coining press. The design used is a modification of a much earlier Morgan design that was used on several of the U.S. Assay Commissions Annual Medals in the 1880s and 1890s.

Mintage 2,200 Silver (HK-449), 3,700 Bronze (HK-450), and 5 Gold (HK-1031). The surviving number of Wilson Dollars particularly in mint state is much less as many specimens were lost during WWII. When Japan invaded the Philippines in 1942 the U.S. government dumped 16 million Pesos in silver coins into Manila Bay to prevent it's seizure by the Japanese. Many Silver and Bronze Wilson Dollars were included in this dumping. Although many of these coins and medals were salvaged after the war the majority are heavily corroded from their long immersion in salt water. All Wilson Dollars are scarce particularily in true Mint State. All Wilson Dollars are scarce particularily in true Mint State. According to NGC and PCGS online population reports (3/10/2014) NGC and PCGS combined have only certified 120 Silver and 22 Bronze Wilson Dollars in MS60 and above.

This specimen has a particularly distinguished pedegree in that it is from the "Bill Weber Collection". Bill Weber was one of the foremost collectors of So-Called Dollars and one of the co-authors of the definitive So-Called Dollar reference "So-Called Dollars:An Illistrated Standard Catalog". After Mr. Weber 's death his So-Called Dollar collection was auctioned by Holabird-Kagin Americana (HKA Auction #2 - December 2, 2008). This specimen was lot # 10414 1201. It is described in the auction catalog as "A rare spectacular uncirculated example with very original toned surfaces. Mint green hues along the edges with an even mixture of grays and tans centrally. Certainly one of the finest toned examples to exist. Reverse is unusually well struck. According to Weber 's personal notes, "Nice early strike."

NGC Population: 32/57
PCGS Population:4/17

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