2012 IS THE FIRST YEAR THAT THE "FIRST RELEASES" DESIGNATION HAS EVER BEEN USED.
These coins were certified to have been struck at West Point Mint. They bear NO MINT MARK, so the only way to receive this designation is if the unopened boxes were shipped directly to NGC from Official Mint Distributors with the “West Point Mint’ straps still around the box, as issued by the U.S Mint.
West Point Mint issued Silver American Eagles have been popular among collectors since the Mint began striking Silver American Eagle Bullion coins in a few years ago. Though most widely known for their production of Proof and Uncirculated Silver American Eagles, the Mint began striking Bullion coins to help the U.S. Mint meet investor demand. Coins minted at West Point Mint historically have carried a slight premium over other U.S. Mint Silver Eagles (except of course San Francisco Mint issued coins).
The NGC “First Releases” designation is new for 2012. Like Early Releases, it is only granted to coins received within the first 30 days of release. This new designation is sure to be popular among silver eagle buyers and collectors.
The obverse of the 2012 Silver American Eagle features the popular Lady Liberty design, striding confidently toward the sunrise draped in the Stars and Stripes of the U.S. Flag, carrying branches of laurel and oak. The reverse, designed by United States Mint sculptor John Mercanti, features a striking image of a heraldic eagle with a shield and olive branch in the right talon and arrows in the left.
NGC one of the nation’s top grading services and is the official grading service of the American Numismatic Association (ANA).
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