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Coins - 1975 Mint Set

The 1975 mint set included twelve uncirculated coins and was the first mint set with the special bicentennial reverse images on the quarter, half dollar and dollar coins. Too, this year's mint set did not have any coins minted in San Francisco.   

The mint set contained two pliofilm sleeves, one with coins minted in Denver and the other with coins made in Philadelphia. Each sleeve had a dollar, half dollar, quarter, dime, nickel and one cent coin.  None of the coins in this standard mint set contained any silver, though a special three-coin bicentennial set had coins with 40% silver.

A white envelope made of sturdy paper holds the 1975 mint set. In the upper left corner, "US MINT" and "1975 Uncirculated Coin" identifies the set.

1975 Mint Set Package

1975 Mint Set

The two pliofilm sleeves, each holding six uncirculated coins, are sandwiched between two pieces of cardstock to help protect the set.

1975 Mint Set open 

1975 Mint Set Uncirculated Coins

As in previous years, the red-edged pliofilm sleeve holds six coins from the Denver mint. This year, the blue-edged sleeve contains only six coins, all from the Philadelphia mint.

1975 Mint Set obverse

Each coin in the mint set is sealed in its own compartment, but the coins can move freely and rotate into different positions.

Looking at the reverse images, the three special bicentennial images show on the quarter (drummer), the dollar (liberty bell and moon) and the half dollar (Independence Hall). 

1975 Mint Set reverse 

With the twelve coins evenly spaced in the mint set, the US Mint chose not to include an identifying token as they had in the mint sets in earlier years.  

1975 Mint Set Coins and Metals

The coins of the 1975 Mint Set contained the following metals:

Penny: 95% copper; 5% zinc
Nickel: 75% copper; 25% nickel
Dime: 91.67% copper; 8.33% nickel
Quarter: 91.67% copper; 8.33% nickel
Half Dollar: 91.67% copper; 8.33% nickel
Dollar: 91.67% copper; 8.33% nickel

Click on Mint Set Population to view the contents of the sets through the years. Take a look at the overall Mint Set page to see how the values compare among the sets.

1975 Mint Set Year - News about Coins and the US Mint

(note: the below links to newspapers open in a new window)

Penny-Pinch Giving Mint, Banks Woes
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette - Feb 10, 1975
Though the US Mint produced 70 billion pennies since 1959, they estimate 30 billion are either lost or lying in piggy banks, pickle jars or shoe boxes out of circulation. The hoarding begun last year due to the sharp increase in copper prices is no longer valid. Copper prices have dropped over 60%.

Annual Assay Ritual Held in US Mint
Observer-Reporter - Feb 13, 1975
Begun in 1792, each year a presidential commission takes samples of dimes, quarters, half dollars and dollars from all of the mints to verify their quality. The old law considered pennies and nickels as minor coins and did not require them to be checked. The spokesman for the commission said, "I don't think we've ever found a bad coin."

Coins Gone, Lawmakers Blamed
The Pittsburgh Press - Apr 21, 1975
Last year, with copper prices rising, the US Mint produced 16 aluminum specimen pennies. The Mint provided these examples to members of the Senate and House banking committees for review as they considered the legislation for changing the metal content of the one cent coins. To date, only two of the example coins have been returned. As a footnote, it's illegal for anyone to own pattern coins struck after 1916. Though, those 14 coins would be very valuable to collectors.

1975 Liberia Proof Set 
Merced Sun-Star - May 5, 1975
The US Mint will produce the 1975 Liberia Proof Set containing seven coins. One of the coins, a 42 mm, .900 fine silver five-dollar crown, will be the largest coin ever struck at the US Mint. The set will contain a bronze one-cent coin; cupronickel five, ten, quarter, half dollar and dollar coins; and the silver five-dollar coin. The seven-piece sets will cost $29.50, and the one silver five-dollar coin set will be $15.00. Orders must be received by June 15, 1975.

Penny Pitch Made 
Waycross Journal-Herald - May 16, 1975
Mary T. Brooks, Director of the Mint, competed with bank executives in a penny pitch contest. Their efforts focused on getting people to return the 30 billion pennies back for circulation. At a cost of $7.50 per 1000 coins, the taxpayers pay the cost of minting new coins when so many could be returned to save the expense.

US Mint is puzzled by disappearing pennies 
The Spokesman-Review - Jun 1, 1975
It appears the acute shortage of pennies is over, but the Mint still needs to produce new one cent coins at a rapid rate. The normal increase in demand, year over year, is 10% per mint officials. During the shortage last year, the mint's penny production increased 31%. This year, the increase is an additional 20%. People remain puzzled by the continuing increased need for pennies.

Bicentennial Coins Available July 7 
Sarasota Herald-Tribune - Jun 27, 1975
The US Mint is producing millions of the special half dollars and quarters for the Bicentennial celebration. The first to go into circulation  will be the half dollar with Independence Hall on the reverse. The quarters with George Washington on one side and a drummer on the other will go into circulation in August or September. The mint will begin producing the dollar coins with the Liberty bell-moon design in mid-July, but they won't be released until January 1976.

Does the US Mint have plans to issue new coin?
Tri City Herald - Sep 16, 1975
Per the US Mint, they are considering a two-cent coin. Per the Treasury Secretary, "We could save money in coinage processing and printing, but it would also save our natural resources." They also expect two-cent coins would ease the penny shortages likely to occur in the future.

Money with bumps?
The Leader-Post - Sep 23, 1975
Jose Feliciano, blind since birth, proposed making paper money with braille-like bumps for the different denominations. No bumps would be needed on the one dollar bills. Coins are easy with their different sizes, but the bills need identification for blind people.

Mint Proof Sets Make Nice Gifts For Children
Reading Eagle - Dec 14, 1975
If you are still in the market for gifts for the son, daughter or grandchild, the Bureau of the Mint is accepting orders for the six-coin 1976 sets now. Modern day proof coins were issued beginning in 1936 but not made during the war years of 1943-49 or during the coinage crunch of 1965-67.

National Bicentennial Medal
The Robesonian - Dec 19, 1975
The first gold medal authorized by Congress for sale to the public will be available on January 1, 1976. The three-inch gold medal will sell for $4000 and contains .900 fine gold from the US Treasury reserves. These gold medals will only be struck on order. The medal is also available in smaller sizes in bronze, gold-plated bronze and silver.

The 1975 Mint Set Year included news of the penny shortage, the loss of the aluminum specimen pennies and the release of the bicentennial coins and medals. 

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