U.S. Mints In The South

Potomac Pride

Sergeant Major
Oct 28, 2011
The seizure of government property such as U.S. mints by the southern states as part of their act of secession was a major issue that led to military action by the Union. In addition to U.S. mints, the south took control of such valuable government property as forts, arsenals, shipyards and customs houses.


Forum Host
Nov 27, 2018
Chattanooga, Tennessee
The pretense of the seizures by the States came under the idea of territorial property of the State, with the added excuse that it would reimburse the U. S. later.
Oct 8, 2021
The Confederacy seized three Federal Mints in the South. They were in Charlotte, North Carolina, Dahlonega, Georgia and New Orleans, Louisiana. The Charlotte and Dahlonega Mints were small facilities that processed gold ore and produced gold coins only. New Orleans was much larger. It issued gold and silver coins. All copper coins were made and the main mint in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The Confederacy operated the Dahlonega and New Orleans Mints for a short time in 1861. There were no top notch die makers in the south and once the supply of Union coin dies ran out, the mints could not continue operations.

The New Orleans Mint did produce four half dollars which used a Union die for the obverse and the Confederate die for the reverse. There were experimental pieces and none were issued for circulation. Jefferson Davis was carrying one of these pieces when Union forces captured him in 1865. That piece was lost for many years, but turned up in the late 1950s.

Here is a so-called restrike of the Confederate half dollar. In the mid 1870s Scott and Company, a stamp and coin dealer, acquired the Confederate half dollar die. They obtained 500 examples of the 1861-O half dollar, planed off the reverses, and over struck them with the Confederate die to produced a copy of the Confederate half dollar. Here is one of these pieces.

1861 Confed Rest All.jpg

This piece is worth several thousand dollars. There have been many copies made of this coin. Almost all of them have very little value. There are perhaps 300 of these pieces left from the original mintage.