Minted 1971-1978, the Eisenhower dollar – also known as the "Ike dollar" – was the first U.S. dollar coin since 1935. It was also the last large-sized U.S. dollar coin series struck for circulation. Eisenhower dollar coins produced for circulation are copper-nickel clad, with special Uncirculated and Proof issues struck for collectors in 40% silver. The series includes just 32 date, mint mark and variety combinations, making a complete collection of Eisenhower dollars an affordable and achievable challenge for most collectors.
Honors 34th President & 1st Moon Landing
Designed by Frank Gasparro, the obverse side of the Eisenhower dollar honors 34th U.S. President and WWII hero Dwight D. Eisenhower. The reverse, also by Gasparro, pays tribute to man's first Moon landing. It adapts the original Apollo 11 mission insignia to show an eagle holding an olive branch landing on the Moon.
Special Bicentennial Issues
In 1975 and 1976, special dual-dated Eisenhower dollar coins were struck in both copper-nickel clad and 40% silver to celebrate America's bicentennial. For both years, the obverse bears the dual dates 1776-1976. The reverse by Dennis L. Williams depicts the Liberty Bell superimposed over the Moon. Following these Bicentennial issues, the Eisenhower dollar series resumed its original obverse and reverse designs in 1977.
America's Last Large-Sized Dollar
Measuring 38.1 mm in diameter, the "Ike dollar" was America's last large-sized circulating dollar coin. In 1979, Eisenhower dollar coins were replaced by the smaller (26.5 mm) Susan B. Anthony dollars. The Anthony dollars never achieved widespread circulation, but the days of large-sized U.S. dollar coins were over. Other than commemorative coins and Silver American Eagle bullion coins, all U.S. dollar coins minted since 1979 have been small-sized dollars.
The Big Sky Hoard
In 2011, the largest known hoard of Eisenhower dollars was found in a Montana bank vault. Dubbed the "Big Sky Hoard," it contained 223,000 Eisenhower dollar coins in original U.S. Mint bags that had been tucked away by a single collector for 30 years. The hoard was acquired by Littleton Coin Company, who made the Eisenhower dollar coins available to collectors. You can read more about this exciting story here.