1935 was the last year of release for the Peace dollar series – indeed, it was the last year of production for any US dollar coin until the Eisenhower dollar debuted in 1971. By 1935, the United States Mint had gotten Peace dollar production down, and so the average 1935 comes fairly nice. Nevertheless, it is relatively scarcer in high Mint State, such as here.
There are only two examples of the 1935 Peace dollar certified by PCGS at the top pop grade of MS-67, and the specimen being offered by GreatCollections is the first of those coins to be sold at auction.
To figure out some ground for comparison, therefore, NGC reports a total of six coins graded MS-67 and this year saw two examples sell at auction. One sold in October for $9,000, and another sold for $12,000 in June. Going back a few years, however, an NGC MS-67 went for only $3,290 in January 2015. But five years earlier than that, an NGC-graded specimen sold for $16,100, and in July 2008 another piece went for $9,488.
PCGS reports 92 coins graded MS-66+, and several of these sold in 2020 alone. In October, an example went for $3,840. Two different coins sold for $4,320 each in sales during September and August, respectively. An April 2020 sale saw a specimen garner $5,280, and a March sale saw an example sell for $3,878. If you consider that auction records for NGC MS-66+ coins average around not quite $3,000, one may potentially extrapolate values for a PCGS 67 from the NGC MS-67 prices mentioned above.
For more auction results, you can search through the GreatCollections Auction Archives, with records for over 600,000 certified coins the company has sold over the past seven years.
At the time of writing, the high bid for this 1935 Peace dollar is $43,500 after 37 bids.
Peace Dollars in the Market
Demand for the Peace dollar series has been high for many years. Along with the Morgan silver dollar, it is one of the most popular series of classic United States coinage to collect. In contrast to the Morgan dollar, however, the Peace silver dollar is a shorter and more affordable series to complete.
Issued from 1921-28 and again from 1934-1935 (skipping the worst of the Great Depression), the entire series includes only 25 dates and major varieties – though the 1921 and 1922 High-Relief Peace dollars will present some difficulty. And once a collector is ready to upgrade their coins or move deeper into the series, a few recognized prooflike issues and a number of VAM varieties can provide that extra challenge.
But if you’re looking for Gem-quality coins and beyond, the Peace dollar series reveals itself to be a serious challenge.
A complete collection of Peace dollars in MS-65 has a market value today of about $79,250, while a set in MS-66 (with a 1925-S in MS-65) costs approximately $250,000. One should keep in mind that these prices are for sight-unseen coins certified by either PCGS or NGC; premium-quality coins, including coins with high eye appeal, pristine surfaces, and approval by CAC, may cost multiples of these amounts.
A “Classic” Modern
Beyond being one of America’s classic silver dollar types, the Peace dollar served as a circulating commemorative marking the end of hostilities in the First World War. Both politicians and numismatists advocated for a business strike coin to honor both the Allied victory in the “Great War” and the restoration of peace on the world stage–not to mention the return of a silver dollar to American pockets. Many stories have been told about the infamous numismatist Farran Zerbe and his lobbying efforts on behalf of the Peace dollar, but according to some experts, it isn’t certain that he had any real involvement.
Of course, one important aspect of the Peace dollar’s popularity is Anthony de Francisci’s classic design. Sometimes referred to as the “flapper” dollar, the obverse features a modern-looking Lady Liberty–using de Francisci’s wife Teresa as a model–that contrasts greatly with the previous Morgan dollar Liberty. The reverse features an eagle perched on a rock observing a brightly shining sunrise. It holds an olive branch in its talons and has its wings down, symbolizing the end of the war effort and the welcome beginning of peace. The reverse is yet another entry in the line of great early 20th-century eagles on American coinage.
The edge of the Peace dollar is reeded.