Understanding 90% Junk Silver US Coins

Understanding 90% Junk Silver US Coins

90% Junk Silver Coins

Understanding 90% Junk Silver US Coins


When it comes to coins, some may hold more value than others. Have you ever wondered if the old US coins sitting in your change jar could be worth more than their face value? Well, you might be surprised to learn that certain US coins minted before 1965 contain 90% silver, making them highly sought after by collectors and investors alike. In this blog, we will delve into the world of 90% junk silver US coins, explaining what they are, how to identify them, and why they can be valuable.

What are 90% Junk Silver US Coins?

US coins minted prior to 1965 were made from a composition that contained 90% silver and 10% copper. These coins are often referred to as “90% junk silver coins” because they are no longer in circulation and are primarily valued for their silver content rather than their face value. Despite the term “junk,” these coins hold significant worth due to the increasing demand for silver and their historical significance.

Identifying 90% Silver Coins

To determine if a coin is 90% silver, you can look for specific indicators. The most common 90% silver coins include dimes, quarters, and half dollars. Before 1965, these coins displayed a clear distinction in their appearance compared to modern-day coins. They had a brighter, more lustrous appearance due to the high silver content. We can help you assess these coins, you can send us a picture via email or text message 361-857-4496 or info@rockportgold.com

The Value of 90% Junk Silver Coins

The value of 90% junk silver coins extends beyond their face value. These coins are sought after by collectors and investors at Rockport Gold & Silver we buy and sell the coins via our website and our eBay store. The price of 90% silver coins is influenced by the current market price of silver, making it subject to fluctuations. However, due to the intrinsic value of silver and the historical significance of these coins, they can maintain a premium price.

Factors Influencing the Value

Several factors can influence the value of 90% junk silver coins. The current price of silver in the market plays a significant role. When the price of silver rises, the value of these coins increases. Additionally, the condition and rarity of a specific coin can impact its value. Well-preserved coins in excellent condition tend to fetch higher prices than those in poor condition. The rarity of a coin, such as limited mintages or unique variations, can also significantly affect its worth.

Common Types of 90% Silver Coins

There are several types of 90% silver coins that are widely recognized and sought after by collectors. These include:

  1. Mercury Dimes
  2. Roosevelt Dimes
  3. Washington Quarters
  4. Standing Liberty Quarters
  5. Franklin Half Dollars
  6. Walking Liberty Half Dollars
  7. Kennedy Half Dollars

Each of these coins has its own unique design and historical significance, adding to their appeal among collectors.

Silver quarter from 1941
90% Junk Silver Coins mercury dime

Collecting and Investing in 90% Silver Coins

For coin enthusiasts, collecting 90% silver coins can be a rewarding hobby. It allows you to own a piece of history while potentially increasing your wealth. Some collectors focus on completing sets of specific coins, while others seek rare variations or coins with unique mint marks. When investing in 90% silver coins, it is essential to research and stay informed about the current market trends. Consultation with experts can help you make informed decisions and maximize the potential returns on your investments.

Storing and Protecting Your Silver Coins

Proper storage and protection are crucial to maintaining the value and condition of your 90% silver coins. Direct contact with air can cause tarnishing, so it is recommended to store them in airtight containers or coin holders. Avoid handling the coins excessively, as the oils from your skin can cause damage. Additionally, keeping your coins in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight will help preserve their appearance and prevent degradation.

Selling 90% Silver Coins

If you decide to sell your 90% silver coins, there are several options available. Coin dealers, pawn shops, and online marketplaces are common avenues for selling. However, it is essential to research and find reputable buyers who offer fair prices for your coins. Keep in mind that the value of silver fluctuates, so selling during periods of high demand and price increases can potentially yield better returns.

Avoiding Counterfeit Coins

Counterfeit coins are a concern in the world of numismatics. To protect yourself from purchasing fake 90% silver coins, it is advisable to buy from trusted sources and reputable dealers. Educating yourself about the specific characteristics and markings of genuine coins can help you identify potential counterfeits. If you are uncertain about the authenticity of a coin, consulting with experts or professional grading services can provide valuable insights. We can always look at a coin for you to help you decide if its authentic.

The Future of 90% Silver Coins

As the demand for silver continues to rise, the value of 90% junk silver coins has increased. If you’re interested in buying or selling 90% silver coins, gold coins, gold or silver jewelry, and other precious metal items please contact us at Rockport Gold & Silver 361-857-4496


In conclusion, the US coins minted before 1965 containing 90% silver are referred to as 90% junk silver coins. These coins hold value beyond their face value due to their silver content and historical significance Remember to contact an expert like Rockport Gold and Silver for any questions of value or to sell your coins. Please handle your coins with care to maximize their worth. So, why not take a closer look at your change jar? You might just find a valuable piece of history.


Q1: What is the difference between junk silver and regular silver coins?

Junk silver coins refer to US coins minted before 1965 that contain 90% silver. Regular silver coins can include both collectible coins with numismatic value and modern silver bullion coins.

Q2: Are 90% silver coins legal tender?

Yes, 90% silver coins were once legal tender in the United States. However, their silver value is now more significant than their face value.

Q3: Can I spend 90% silver coins at their face value?

Technically, 90% silver coins can still be used as legal tender, but their silver content makes them worth more than their face value. Most people choose to hold onto these coins for their silver value or sell them.

Q4: Where can I sell my 90% silver coins?

You can sell your 90% silver coins to Rockport Gold and Silver, we purchase gold and silver coins, jewelry, and more! Visit our appointment page to set up a visit!

Q5: How can I determine the value of my 90% silver coins?

The value of 90% silver coins depends on factors such as the current market price of silver, the condition of the coins, and their rarity. Come see us at Rockport Gold & Silver or give us a call and we’ll help you find out what your coins are worth and buy them if you’d like to sell them.


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