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Southern Gold Coins

Southern gold coins were struck at the Dahlonega, Charlotte Mint between 1838 and 1861 and at the New Orleans mint from 1839 to 1861, and again from 1879 through 1909.
The discovery of gold in the Southeast sparked the opening of mints in Dahlonega (Georgia) and Charlotte (North Carolina) in 1838. Also in 1838, a mint was opened in New Orleans, Louisiana, to facilitate commerce in the new states and to convert the steady stream of world coins that were entering the city.

Several of the mints fell victim to circumstances beyond their control. For instance, in 1861, Confederate forces seized the Charlotte, Dahlonega, and New Orleans mints. The first two mints were shut down as a result, never to reopen, but the New Orleans Mint was recaptured by federal troops and produced coins until 1909.

The following is a list of U.S. mints that have produced Southern gold coins for circulation:

Charlotte, North Carolina (1838-1861)

Charlotte Gold

The Charlotte Mint opened in 1838 to process locally mined gold. In 1844, a substantial portion of this mint burned to the ground, preventing coinage in 1845. In 1861, Confederate forces seized the Charlotte Mint and shut it down, turning it into a hospital and headquarters during the Civil War.

From 1867 to 1913, the building housed a U.S. assay office. The building was later moved and currently houses an art museum. The mint-mark for Charlotte is the letter C. The Charlotte Mint produced only gold coins, usually of low mintage, not quite up to the standards of the Philadelphia Mint, but generally better than the coins produced at its sister facility in Dahlonega, Georgia.

Dahlonega, Georgia (1838-1861)

Dahlonega Gold

The Dahlonega Mint opened in 1838 to process locally mined gold. Output at this mint was always low, yet it continued to operate until 1861, when Confederate forces seized the building at the outset of the Civil War. In 1878, the Dahlonega Mint was destroyed by fire.

Today, Price Memorial Hall of North Georgia College sits on the original foundation of the Dahlonega Mint. The mintmark for Dahlonega is the letter D (the same as the Denver Mint, but the two mints never operated simultaneously). The Dahlonega Mint produced only gold coins, many of which were poorly made.

New Orleans, Louisiana (1838-1909)

New Orleans Gold

The New Orleans Mint opened in 1838 to take advantage of the strategic port location and the economic importance of the city, as well as the availability of locally mined gold. In 1861, the mint's operations were discontinued after it was seized by Confederate forces, who used the building as quarters for its troops. In 1862, Union forces recaptured the city, eventually reopening the building as a U.S. assay office.

For a short time, the building was used as a federal prison. In 1879, coinage resumed and continued until 1909. Today, the building still stands on the northeastern edge of the French Quarter, serving as a branch of the Louisiana State Museum. The mintmark for New Orleans is the letter O. The New Orleans Mint produced both gold and silver coins, in varying mintages (rare to common), generally of good quality, but often softly struck.


US Rare Coin Investments 2003 - 2016 U.S. Rare Coin Investments

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