Carson City: The Mine, The Metal, and The Mint

Why are coins from the Carson City Mint so notable? Why was it only open for a short period of time? What makes this mint so much more special than the others? Keep reading to find out!

History of the Mint

Carson City was founded in 1858 and had a low residential population up until the famous Comstock Lode was discovered 15 miles away on Mount Davidson. The discovery sparked a silver rush, causing an influx of miners to move to the area in hopes of getting rich. The Carson City Mint was authorized and created in 1869 to accommodate the demand from Comstock Lode, which ended up being the largest silver strike in U.S. history.

Prior to its opening, the closest mint to the Nevada area was strategically located in San Francisco due to California’s gold rush. There was so much gold found during the historical period in California that workers transported it in bulk to the San Francisco Mint to produce gold coins.

When workers began mining gold and silver from the Comstock Lode, they quickly realized that it was too difficult to send ores to the San Francisco Mint. This was due to the high costs of shipping and the risk of theft. The citizens of Nevada were adamant to have a mint in Carson City to keep up with Comstock Lode, which is how the CC branch was formed.

The Carson City Mint

In 1870, The Carson City Mint began pressing coins with the famous “CC” mintmark. The mint continued to produce coins until 1893. During the course of its operation, the Carson City Mint issued more than 50 types of coins from both ores. The most commonly pressed coin was the Morgan Silver Dollar. The mint’s status was formally withdrawn in 1899 due to the extreme decline in mining on the Comstock.  Today, the building is home to the Nevada State Museum. 

Why is the “CC” mark so special?

Coin collectors and dealers alike have always preferred coins with the “CC” Mint mark. Since the Carson City Mint was only open for a short period of time, there was a limited supply of coins minted with high demand. Since fewer coins were produced, there were not nearly as many coins that were sent into circulation compared to larger mints such as in Philadelphia.

Looking to add to your collection?

Interested in adding some “CC” coins to your collection? Look no further! We have plenty of options on our website, from rolls to GSA-certified “CC” raw silver dollars to slab coins, including $5 Liberty Head from NGC, PCGS, and Morgan Dollars from NGC and ICG.