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Mormon Gold Coins

This blog covers all sorts of gold coins. In past editions we have discussed ancient gold coins, shipwreck-salvaged gold and silver coinage, PCGS coins, NGC coins, fake gold coins, proof and high-relief coins…and the list goes on. After receiving an email this weekend, however, I searched my portfolio and could not find a single article on Mormon gold, so today Mormon gold is exactly what we will discuss.

If you think you misread something, do not be alarmed. There really is a type of gold called Mormon gold. In Utah in 1847 there wasn’t much money around, at least not the type of money that comes to our minds today. Due to the lack of a standard currency out west people used a combination of French francs, Spanish dollars and other currency to make do. This didn’t always work out, as individuals would sometimes be forced to wait months for $4.95 in change after purchasing a $5 item.

Eventually the settlers started to make their own money. They even developed the only known currency in history to be backed by livestock – see Deseret Currency Association notes for more information. Eventually, however, everyone realized that gold was the globally-accepted common thread.

When the Mormon Battalion returned from Sutter’s Mill in California with shipments of gold dust they turned it into coinage. These coins were the first to be minted from California “strike” gold, but due to rumors that the coins did not have the proper amount of pure gold many were melted down soon after being minted.

Today, Mormon gold coins can be worth upwards of $10,000 for the most common examples, while $20 gold coins are worth $10,000 or more. The rarest of Mormon money, the $10 gold coin, could be worth up to $1 million according to some estimates. These coins may not be the best investment vehicles for individuals seeking long-term wealth preservation, but they do come with an incredible and historic story that many collectors may enjoy.

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