Morgan silver dollar mintages steadily rose in the 1880s, when silver was still pouring out of the great Western mines. But unlike other coins of the day, many were held in reserve at banks and issuing mints. Vast quantities were later lost in government melts, which means that original mintages can be very deceiving in relation to the actual number of Morgans now surviving for individual issues. For example, this 1884 Philadelphia Morgan had a mintage of 14,070,000, but today just 5% of the original number may survive in Very Fine or higher grades.
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