1956 US Mint Set

1956 US Mint Sets hold a unique place in the history of such releases from the United States Mint. This set contained a different number of strikes than other sets of the era with packaging affected by that number as well.

The 1956 US Mint Set continued the trend established years before of including two examples of each coin from each issuing mint facility. However, as the US Mint facility in San Francisco did not strike circulating coins in 1956, it marked a distinct reduction in the number of coins included as part of the set in comparison to previous releases.

The number of coins included was further decreased by the fact that only the Philadelphia minting facility struck half dollars that year. As such this set only included a total of eighteen different coins – four Lincoln Cents, four Jefferson Nickels, four Roosevelt Dimes, four Washington Quarters and two Franklin Half Dollars.

Adding these strikes together gives a total face value for the set of just $2.64. For comparison, the previous 1955 Mint Set contained a total of 22 strikes with a face value of $2.86 (which itself was a decrease from previous year’s issues).

Packaging remained similar to previous releases with the strikes placed in cardboard holders along with other coins from the same facility. However, as only two facilities issued circulating coins in 1956, only two cardboard holders were included in the set as apposed to three the previous year.

Circulating dimes, quarters, half dollars and dollar coins issued in this era were struck from 90% silver, giving these sets an inherent melt value. Adding the included silver coins up gives a total silver weight of 1.73610 ounces.


The 1956 US Mint Sets included a total of eighteen coins with two examples of each circulating coin struck by the US Mint that year, as previously mentioned. Short descriptions of the coins follows:

(4) Lincoln Cents

Included in this set were two Lincoln Cents from the Philadelphia facility and two from the Denver facility. These cents contain a portrait of Abraham Lincoln on their obverse along with a wheat stalk design on their reverse. Both designs were the work of artist Victor David Brenner and made their debut on the cent in 1909.

(4) Jefferson Nickels

Four Jefferson Nickels are found in the set with two from Philadelphia and two from Denver. The obverse of the coins contains a portrait of Thomas Jefferson with the reverse showcasing his home Monticello. Both were originally completed by Felix Schlag and made their debuts in 1938.

(4) Roosevelt Dimes – 0.07234 oz. total silver weight per dime

Once again, two strikes from Philadelphia and two from Denver were included to represent the Roosevelt Dimes of the year. These coins contained a portrait of Franklin D. Roosevelt on their obverse and an oak branch, olive branch and torch on their reverse. Both were completed by John R. Sinnock.

(4) Washington Quarters – 0.18084 oz. total silver weight per quarter

This set contains two Washington Quarters from Philadelphia and two from Denver. These quarters showcase a portrait of George Washington on their obverse and an eagle on their reverse. Both were designed by John Flanagan.

(2) Franklin Half Dollars – 0.36169 oz. total silver weight per half dollar

As only the Philadelphia minting facility struck half dollar coins in 1956, this set only included a total of two half dollars both examples of that facilities releases. The obverse of the half dollar contains a portrait of Benjamin Franklin while the reverse showcases the Liberty Bell. Both were designed by John R. Sinnock.

1956 Mint Set Specifications

Face Value:   $.2.86
Composition:   cent, nickel – base metal
dime, quarter, half dollar – 90% silver
Total Silver Content:   1.73610 oz



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