US Philippines 1912 Silver Peso: a tough peso to find

The 1912 silver peso was hard for me to find – it took me quite a while to find this one at a price I was willing to pay. I think it conservatively grades EF40, and may garner an EF45.

1912 was the last year that this coin was made, and the mintage numbers weren’t particularly high. That, combined with a century of disinterest in the coin has led to a severe shortage in high grades. American pesos circulated widely throughout Asia as trade coinage, and many were damaged with chopmarks or assay slices.

On the obverse, Liberty is shown pounding on the forge of freedom. It was designed by Melecio Figueroa and there is some speculation that the young Filipina woman shown on the coin was based on his daughter. She is wearing a flowing dress, similar to the garb of Liberty on other period coinage. The obverse of the coin shows Liberty in the act of one-handedly striking an anvil with a hammer while her other  hand holds an olive branch. In the background is Mt. Mayon, an active volcano with smoke billowing from the crater. On the upper edge of the coin is the denomination “One Peso” and on the lower perimeter is the word “Filipinas”.

US Philippines 1912 Silver Peso - Obverse with Liberty

US Philippines 1912 Silver Peso - Obverse with Liberty

The reverse design features an eagle perched on a shield with symbols from the American flag. At the upper rim are the words “United States of America” and at the bottom is the year of issue. To the left of the year is the mint mark (“S” for San Francisco). Coins with no mint mark were minted at the Philadelphia Mint.

US Philippines 1912 Silver Peso - Reverse with Eagle on Shield

US Philippines 1912 Silver Peso - Reverse with Eagle on Shield

Identification code: Philippines KM-172

Date: 1912

Mint Mark: S (San Francisco)

Mintage: 680,000

Country of origin: United States of America

Composition: 80% Silver (0.5144 oz ASW)

Size: 38 mm

Weight: 20 grams (0.5144 oz ASW)

Estimated Value: $80-150

1912 Silver Peso - (0.5144 oz ASW)

1912 Silver Peso - (0.5144 oz ASW)

1912 Silver Peso - (0.5144 oz ASW)
1912 Silver Peso – (0.5144 oz ASW)

2 responses to “US Philippines 1912 Silver Peso: a tough peso to find

  1. ronald allan dulla

    how can an old coins like this priced at 80 – 150 only and the baseball cards and first editions comic books cost a million bucks, we have 4 pcs of this silver peso and lots of smaller coins, and take note its dated 1903 a hundred year old coin for a price of 150, what a laugh. i better put it on our wall for a collection or as a souvenier from our great grand father, thanks though for the info. God bless.

  2. Good question. The thing is, the majority of baseball cards and comic books are worth next to nothing. I honestly wonder how coin collecting is going to survive the generational transition – if there are no future collectors, who will buy estates as they come on the market? If your local coin clubs are anything like mine, the number of 20- and 30-something members is disturbingly small…

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