Transitional Coins

The New Orleans Mint transitional coins refer to a series of United States coins that were minted at the New Orleans Mint during a period of transition in the mid-19th century. These coins are notable for their unique characteristics and historical significance. Here’s an overview of the New Orleans Mint transitional coins and some references to explore for further information:


The New Orleans Mint was established in 1838 as a branch of the United States Mint. It played a crucial role in producing coins for commerce in the southern region of the United States.

The Civil War Era:

During the American Civil War (1861-1865), the New Orleans Mint fell under the control of the Confederate States of America. As a result, minting operations were disrupted, and a limited number of coins were produced.

The 1861-O Double Eagle:

One of the most renowned New Orleans Mint transitional coins is the 1861-O Double Eagle, a $20 gold coin. It holds historical significance as the only U.S. coin minted with the New Orleans Mint’s “O” mintmark during the Confederacy. These coins are highly sought after by collectors due to their scarcity and connection to the Civil War period.

The 1861-O Half Dollar:

Another notable transitional coin from the New Orleans Mint is the 1861-O Half Dollar. This coin, also minted during the Civil War, features the “O” mintmark and is highly prized by collectors.


“The Official Red Book: A Guide Book of United States Coins” by R.S. Yeoman and Kenneth Bressett: This widely recognized reference provides comprehensive information on U.S. coins, including the New Orleans Mint transitional coins.

“United States Coinage: A Study by Type” by Ron Guth and Jeff Garrett: This book offers detailed insights into U.S. coinage history, including the New Orleans Mint and its transitional coins.

Websites like the Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS) and the Numismatic Guaranty Corporation (NGC) provide online resources, articles, and guides on specific coins, including New Orleans Mint issues.

Please note that the references mentioned above are not exhaustive, and there are numerous other numismatic resources and publications available that delve into the topic of New Orleans Mint transitional coins in more detail.

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