Guide to Federal Records

Records of the U.S. Mint


(Record Group 104)
1792-1994

Overview of Records Locations

Table of Contents

  • 104.1 Administrative History
  • 104.2 Records of the Mint of the United States 1792-1886, 1898-1965 (bulk 1792-1873)
    • 104.2.1 General correspondence
    • 104.2.3 Records relating to assays
    • 104.2.4 Records relating to other operations
    • 104.2.5 Administrative records
  • 104.3 Records of the Bureau of the Mint 1873-1993
    • 104.3.1 General correspondence
    • 104.3.2 Legal records
    • 104.3.3 Records relating to the production of circulating coins
    • 104.3.4 Records relating to the production and sale of medals and numismatic coins
    • 104.3.5 Records relating to the management of metals
    • 104.3.6 Other operating records
    • 104.3.7 Accounting records
    • 104.3.8 Records relating to personnel
    • 104.3.9 Other records
  • 104.4 Records of the U.S. Mint, Philadelphia, PA 1873-1967 (bulk 1873-1939)
    • 104.4.1 General correspondence
    • 104.4.2 Records relating to the production of U.S. circulating coins
    • 104.4.3 Records relating to assays
    • 104.4.4 Records relating to other operations
    • 104.4.5 Administrative records
  • 104.5 Records of Other Branch Mints and of Assay Offices 1835-1994
    • 104.5.1 Records of the U.S. Assay Office, Boise, ID
    • 104.5.2 Records of the U.S. Mint and Assay Office, Carson City, NV
    • 104.5.3 Records of the U.S. Mint and Assay Office, Charlotte, NC
    • 104.5.4 Records of the U.S. Assay Office, Deadwood, SD
    • 104.5.5 Records of the U.S. Mint, Denver, CO
    • 104.5.6 Records of the U.S. Assay Office, Helena, MT
    • 104.5.7 Records of the U.S. Mint and Assay Office, New Orleans, LA
    • 104.5.8 Records of the U.S. Assay Office, New York, NY
    • 104.5.9 Records of the U.S. Assay Office, St. Louis, MO
    • 104.5.10 Records of the U.S. Assay Office, Salt Lake City, UT
    • 104.5.11 Records of the U.S. Mint and Assay Office, San Francisco, CA
    • 104.5.12 Records of the U.S. Assay Office, Seattle, WA
  • 104.6 Records of and relating to the Annual Assay Commission (AAC) 1817-1980
  • 104.7 Records of the Office of the Secretary of the Treasury in the Custody of the Bureau of the Mint 1792-1886
  • 104.8 Motion Pictures (General) 1940
  • 104.9 Still Pictures (General)

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104.1 Administrative History

Established: In the Department of the Treasury by Secretarial order, January 9, 1984.

Predecessor Agencies:

  • Mint of the United States (1792-1873)

In the Department of the Treasury:

  • Bureau of the Mint (1873-1984)

Functions: Acquires metals for coin and medal production. Supervises the manufacture of U.S. circulating coins and the fulfillment of contracts for the manufacture of foreign circulating coins. Supervises the production and sale of medals and numismatic coins. Has charge of the U.S. Bullion Depository at Fort Knox, KY.

Finding Aids: Forrest R. Holdcamper, comp., "Preliminary Inventory of the Records of the Bureau of the Mint," NC 152 (Jan. 1968); supplement in National Archives microfiche edition of preliminary inventories.

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104.2 Records of the Mint of the United States
1792-1886 (bulk 1792-1873)

History: Established as an Executive branch agency, at Philadelphia, PA, the then seat of government, by an act of April 2, 1792 (1 Stat. 246), with Director of the Mint appointed by the President. General supervision of mint activities vested in Department of State, 1792-99, but passed to Department of the Treasury by 1835. Transferred to Washington, DC, redesignated Bureau of the Mint, and given bureau status in Department of the Treasury. See 104.3.

Related Records: Some records described in this subgroup are filed with records of the U.S. Mint, Philadelphia, PA (1873- ). See 104.4.

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104.2.1 General correspondence

Textual Records (in Philadelphia): Compilation of letters sent and received, 1792-1873. Compilation of letters sent to and received from assay offices and branch mints, 1835-73. Letters sent, 1795-1835, with gaps, including letters sent by the Director of the Mint, 1795-1824. Letters sent by the Director of the Mint, 1866-73. Letters sent, 1816-48, 1850-74, and received, 1850-53, by the Treasurer of the Mint, with an index, 1841-50. Registers of letters sent and received, 1844-73. Compilation of letters sent to and received from officials of the Boulton Mint, near Birmingham, England ("Boulton Correspondence"), 1796-1838. Compilation of letters ("Peale Correspondence"), 1829-86, consisting of letters received from medalist Benjamin Franklin Peale, employed at the Mint of the United States (1833-54) as assayer, melter and refiner, and finally chief coiner; letters received from Peale's widow following his death in 1870; and letters sent.

Microfilm Publications: M64, T646.

Related Records: Letters received from the Director of the Mint, 1832-73, in RG 56, General Records of the Department of the Treasury.

104.2.2 Records relating to the production of U.S. circulating coins

Textual Records (in Philadelphia): Annual statistics on gold, silver, and minor coinage, 1794-1873. Letters sent relating to coins, 1866-73. Books recording amounts of gold, silver, and copper received from the Treasurer of the Mint for coinage manufacture, 1794-1861. Chief coiner's account books concerning the working of gold, 1847-72. Coin order and delivery books, 1852-57, 1859-64, 1867-73. Registers of coins deposited by individuals and firms, 1859-64, 1867-71. Treasurer of the Mint's account books, showing values and weights of coins received from the chief coiner, 1866-70, and gold and silver bars received from the chief melter and refiner, 1866-74. Daily accounts of coin transactions ("Cashier's Blotters"), 1866-73. Records relating to gold and silver wastage during coin manufacture, 1823-42, 1850-72.

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104.2.3 Records relating to assays

Textual Records (in Philadelphia): Records of assays of various monetary metals ("Assay Workbooks"), 1795-1873. Assayers' registers of gold and silver deposits and bullion, 1838-73. Record of gold assay slips, 1854-73. Registers of assays, 1898-1965.

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104.2.4 Records relating to other operations

Textual Records (in Philadelphia): Account books, reports, and other records concerning weighing, melting, and refining procedures, 1815-73. Registers and other records dealing with gold and silver deposits and purchases, 1794-1873. Ledgers, journals, and other records relating to the maintenance of the bullion fund, 1794-1873. Medal account books, 1855-73. Register of dies at the Mint of the United States and at branch mints, 1839-54.

Microfilm Publications: T587.

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104.2.5 Administrative records

Textual Records (in Philadelphia): Compilations of laws (1791-1835) and regulations (1796-1831) relating to the Mint of the United States, n.d. Instructions to branch mints, 1871-73. Fiscal records, including microfilm copy of various reports on receipts and expenditures, 1794-1826 (1 roll); a record of weekly settlements, 1854-70; account books from branch mints, 1855-72; and miscellaneous records, 1794-1873. Personnel records, including a record of work performed daily by employees, 1793; employee registers, 1849-73; letters of application and recommendation, 1850-53; and employee compensation records, 1796-1800, 1851-53, 1857-60. Miscellaneous property and supply records, 1853-73.

Related Records: Personnel records concerning mint officers, 1836-73, in RG 56, General Records of the Department of the Treasury.

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104.3 Records of the Bureau of the Mint
1873-1993

History: For an administrative history of the predecessor Mint of the United States, see 104.2. Bureau of the Mint established in Department of the Treasury, effective April 1, 1873, by the Coinage Act of 1873 (17 Stat. 424), February 12, 1873. Redesignated U.S. Mint, 1984. See 104.1.

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104.3.1 General correspondence

Textual Records: Letters sent, 1873-1917, with registers, 1873- 97, and indexes, 1882-87, 1908-11. Letters sent concerning statistical information on production, coinage, and related matters, 1884-88. Letters received, 1873-1932, with content summaries ("Briefs"), 1873-1922; a name index, 1907; and a subject index, 1908-11. Register of letters received and referred, 1885-1903.

Related Records: Letters received from the Director of the Mint, 1873-1910, in RG 56, General Records of the Department of the Treasury.

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104.3.2 Legal records

Textual Records: Correspondence and case files relating to the ownership of gold, 1933-40.

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104.3.3 Records relating to the production of circulating coins

Textual Records: Records concerning domestic coin production, including case files, 1874-1978; case files on fractional coins, 1903-79; subject files on complaints, 1952-78; correspondence and reports on coinage produced at the various mints, 1875-1932; records relating to the acquisition of bullion for coinage purposes and its allocation to the various mints, 1874-1917; reports and statistical statements on recoinage operations, 1893- 1929; and miscellaneous records, 1921-78. Correspondence concerning the production of coins for the Philippine Islands and Puerto Rico, 1899-1923. Case files and reports on foreign coins produced under contract, 1874-1980.

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104.3.4 Records relating to the production and sale of medals and
numismatic coins

Textual Records: Correspondence, 1895-1928. Subject files, 1918- 78. Case files on commemorative medals, 1913-81. Subject files, 1893-1980, and case files, 1920-78, on commemorative coins and medals. Correspondence, 1929-50, and case files, 1932-75, on U.S. Government medals. Subject files on proof coins, 1955-76.

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104.3.5 Records relating to the management of metals

Textual Records: Letters sent concerning mining statistics, 1880- 97, with register, 1883-85. Records and schedules of silver offers, purchases, and deliveries, 1875-93. Record of deposits, purchases, and domestic production of gold and silver, 1877-99. Register of bullion accounts, 1883-1916. Record of deposits by refineries, 1883-1910. Record of certificates for bullion deposits, 1891-1915. Reports and statistics on gold and silver production, 1889-1931. Quarterly reports on deposits and purchases of gold and silver at branch mints and assay offices, 1917-27. Reports on deposits of foreign bullion, 1920-27. General files on gold, silver, and mixed deposits, 1924-80; and on silver and precious metals, 1942-67. Subject files on platinum group metals, 1938-78. General files on the sale of gold and silver bars, ca. 1940-70.

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104.3.6 Other operating records

Textual Records: Records concerning foreign monetary systems, 1878-1932, including a file of letters and reports from U.S. consuls and ministers concerning gold and silver production, bullion stock, and supply of paper money and specie of various foreign countries ("Interrogatory File"), 1897-1903, 1906-32. Statistical reports and other records concerning the use of gold and silver in the industrial arts, 1899-1931. Correspondence, statements, statistical bulletins, and news clippings, 1917-29, relating to implementation of the Pittman Silver Act of 1918 (40 Stat. 535), April 23, 1918. Case files on the Lend-Lease Program, 1942-80. Correspondence and other records concerning the forwarding of Mexican gold pesos from merchants and banks in Laredo, TX, to the U.S. Mint, Philadelphia, in exchange for reimbursement through the Federal Reserve System, 1929-31 (in Fort Worth). Miscellaneous statistical records, 1870-1922.

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104.3.7 Accounting records

Textual Records: Annual account settlements of branch mints and assay offices, 1925-57. Cashier's daily statements for all branch mints and assay offices, 1913-41. Ledgers of appropriations and expenditures, 1873-75, 1899-1901, 1909-12.

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104.3.8 Records relating to personnel

Textual Records: Letters sent concerning appointments and removals, 1873-92. Letters of application received, 1879-84. Correspondence relating to personnel actions, 1913-30. Registers of employees, 1873-77, 1882-1906, 1912-18, with index, ca. 1880-1906. Records relating to cases of alleged embezzlement by employees, 1901-7.

Related Records: Personnel records concerning mint officers, 1873-1910, in RG 56, General Records of the Department of the Treasury.

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104.3.9 Other records

Textual Records: Annual reports, 1876-1993. Correspondence concerning annual reports, 1915-24. Background files on meetings and conferences, 1911-78. General files on regulations, 1930-78. Records relating to building repairs and real estate, 1913-25. Miscellaneous reference material, 1875-1932.

Photographic Prints: U.S. and some foreign coins, ca. 1880-1900 (28 images). Exterior and interior views of various branch mints and assay offices, ca. 1880-1900 (12 images). Minting equipment, ca. 1880-1900 (3 images). Exterior views of the Sutro Tunnel (constructed to drain the Comstock gold and silver mine), near Virginia City, NV, ca. 1880 (9 images). Display on minting procedures at an unidentified exposition, n.d. (3 views). Unidentified house, n.d. (1 image). See also 104.9.

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104.4 Records of the U.S. Mint, Philadelphia, PA
1873-1967 (bulk 1873-1939)

History: Established, effective April 1, 1873, as a branch mint of the Bureau of the Mint (see 104.3) by the Coinage Act of 1873, having functioned as the central office of the Mint of the United States, 1792-1873 (see 104.2).

Related Records: Some records described in this subgroup are filed with records of the Mint of the United States. See 104.2.

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104.4.1 General correspondence

Textual Records (in Philadelphia): Compilation of letters sent and received, 1873-99. Compilation of letters sent to and received from assay offices and other branch mints, 1873-98. Letters sent by the Superintendent of the Mint, 1873-1900, with registers, 1879-99. Miscellaneous letters sent, 1879-1904, with registers, 1879-81. Letters received, 1898-1901. Registers of letters sent and received, 1873-1900. Telegrams sent, 1881-1900, and received, 1883-93.

Related Records: Letters received from the Superintendent of the Mint at the U.S. Mint, Philadelphia, PA, 1873-1910; and letters received from branch mints and assay offices, 1863-1910, in RG 56, General Records of the Department of the Treasury.

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104.4.2 Records relating to the production of U.S. circulating
coins

Textual Records (in Philadelphia): Annual statistics on gold, silver, and minor coinage, 1873-88. Letters sent, 1873-92, 1895- 1900. Letters sent by the chief coiner to the Superintendent of the Mint, 1877-1900. Cashier's accounts for gold and silver coinage and bars, 1883-1900. Record of bars stored in vaults, 1890-1903. Coin order and delivery books, 1873-99. Daily accounts of coin transactions ("Cashier's Blotters"), 1873-1902. Miscellaneous record books concerning coinage receipts, shipments, transfers, and expenditures, 1873-1914.

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104.4.3 Records relating to assays

Textual Records (in Philadelphia): Letters sent by the assayer, 1884-95, 1904. Records of assays of various monetary metals ("Assay Workbooks"), 1873-1905. Assayers' registers of gold and silver bullion, 1873-1967. Assayers' memorandums of silver transfers, 1876-81.

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104.4.4 Records relating to other operations

Textual Records (in Philadelphia): Records concerning melting and refining procedures, 1873-1923, including letters sent and received by James C. Booth, melter and refiner, 1877-79. Records concerning weighing procedures, 1887-1900. Registers and other records dealing with gold and silver deposits and purchases, 1873-1939. Ledgers and account books concerning the maintenance of the bullion fund, 1873-1916. Record books relating to medal production and sales, 1873-1920. Ledger showing cost of dies manufactured at the U.S. Mint, Philadelphia, and shipped to the other branch mints, 1885-90.

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104.4.5 Administrative records

Textual Records (in Philadelphia): Instructions to branch mints, 1873-78. Fiscal records, 1873-1934, including ledgers detailing purchases of bullion, deposits, and coinage transactions ("Ledgers of the U.S. Mint"), 1883-1934. Personnel records, including employee registers, 1873-1920; registers of appointments to various positions, 1876-79, 1884-1910; and letters of application and recommendation, 1894-96. Records relating to construction of a new Philadelphia mint building at 16th and Spring Streets, consisting of letters sent and received by the superintendent of construction, 1897-1901; a construction progress report, 1898; and space assignment plans, 1898-1900. Miscellaneous property and supply records, 1873-1901.

Photographs : Construction of new Philadelphia mint building, 1897-1900 (13 images, in Philadelphia). See also 104.9.

Related Records: Report on the physical condition of the Philadelphia mint building by the architectural firm of York and Sawyer, 1910, in RG 56, General Records of the Department of the Treasury.

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104.5 Records of Other Branch Mints and of Assay Offices
1835-1994

Related Records: Letters received from branch mints and assay offices, 1863-1910, in RG 56, General Records of the Department of the Treasury.

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104.5.1 Records of the U.S. Assay Office, Boise, ID

Textual Records (in Seattle): Assay records, 1918-33. Office accounts and reports, 1923-33. Bullion registers, ledgers, and stockbooks, 1923-33.

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104.5.2 Records of the U.S. Mint and Assay Office, Carson City,
NV

Textual Records (in San Francisco): Assay records, 1877-1903. Registers of deposits and warrants paid, 1877. Coinage records, 1889-93. Receipts for silver bullion and gold ingots, 1892-94. Payment certificates, 1898-1919.

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104.5.3 Records of the U.S. Mint and Assay Office, Charlotte, NC

Textual Records (in Atlanta): Correspondence, 1835-1913. Records relating to melting and refining deposits, 1837-1913. Registers, 1837-61, 1906-13. Journals, 1837-62, 1868-97. Ledgers, 1837-62, 1868-1913. Accounting records, 1837-62, 1869-1913. Administrative records, 1837-42, 1873-1913.

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104.5.4 Records of the U.S. Assay Office, Deadwood, SD

Textual Records (in Denver): Registers of letters received, 1898-1915. Letters sent from the assayer to the Director of the Mint, 1897-1924. Letters received, 1906-27. Record of button assays, 1898-1916. Register of deposits, 1901-23. Register of silver deposits, 1906-55, with gaps. Correspondence relating to assays, 1906-47.Correspondence concerning bullion shipments and redeposits, 1915-27. Record of operative gains and losses of bullion, 1923-24. Records relating to bullion assays, deposits, and stocks, 1898-1927.

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104.5.5 Records of the U.S. Mint, Denver, CO

Textual Records (in Denver): Letters sent by the superintendent, 1862-74, 1913-17, 1915-18. Miscellaneous correspondence, memoranda, and other records, 1897-1994. Telegrams received from the Director of the Mint and the Treasurer of the Mint, 1904-13. Miscellaneous telegrams received, 1909-13. Treasury Department circulars, 1872-1906. Records relating to construction of the new Denver mint building, including letters received, 1897-1913; letters sent, 1897-1905; accounting sheets for construction costs, 1898-1902; and daily journal of work done, 1898-1904. Records relating to an addition to the Denver mint building, 1934-37. Assayers' registers of gold bullion, 1863-1916. Registers of deposits of gold and silver, 1863-1912. Registers of deposits of gold bullion, 1863-1939, and silver bullion, 1906-17. Registers of warrants issued in payment of deposits, 1863-1907. Organizational charts, ca. 1920-40.

Photographs : Denver mint building construction and operations, 1930-56 (296 images, in Denver). See also 104.9.

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104.5.6 Records of the U.S. Assay Office, Helena, MT

Textual Records (in Denver): Miscellaneous records, ca. 1851-1933. Correspondence, 1877-1933. Bullion accounts, 1878-1933. Administrative records, 1879-1929. Records of deposits and purchases, 1879-1931. Assay records, 1909-33.

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104.5.7 Records of the U.S. Mint and Assay Office, New Orleans,
LA

Textual Records (in Fort Worth): Fair and press copies of letters sent, 1878-97, 1912-19. Record of letters received, 1897-1911. Letters received, 1912-19. Letters received concerning repair of the New Orleans mint building, 1840-58. General correspondence, 1928-34. Register of gold bullion received and coins delivered, 1850-60. Statements of bullion accounts, 1890-92. Record of bullion fund, 1890-93. Calculation books, ca. 1932-42. Registers of bullion abstracts and deposits, 1923-42. Record of bullion stock, 1935-42. Record of mass melts, 1933-35, and bullion shipments, ca. 1941. Miscellaneous registers, 1879-1942.

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104.5.8 Records of the U.S. Assay Office, New York, NY

Textual Records (in New York): Registers of assays of gold and silver deposits, 1916-55. Records of gold and silver assays, 1943-59.

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104.5.9 Records of the U.S. Assay Office, St. Louis, MO

Textual Records (in Kansas City): Register of warrants for ordinary expenses, 1881-1910. Register of accounts, 1906-9.

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104.5.10 Records of the U.S. Assay Office, Salt Lake City, UT

Textual Records (in Denver): Assay records, 1918-33. Bullion accounts and general office records, 1909-33. Melting records, 1909-23.

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104.5.11 Records of the U.S. Mint and Assay Office, San
Francisco, CA

Textual Records (in San Francisco): Letters sent to the Director of the Mint, other U.S. mints and assay offices, Treasury Department officials, and others, 1872-1938. Letters sent by Superintendent Frank A. Leach to the Director of the Mint concerning personnel matters and mint operations, 1912-13. Letters sent relating to recoinage of Philippine Islands coins, 1912-21. Telegrams sent, 1878-83, 1907-33, and received, 1907-35. Correspondence with depositors and others, 1926-31. Assayers' records dealing with the shipment and receipt of bullion, refining processes, and related matters, 1854-1963. Weighing records, 1854-82. Fiscal and accounting records, 1854-1935. Records relating to the locality of producing mines, 1878-1940. Registers of visitors, 1854-92.

Photographic Prints : Various processes and facilities in the San Francisco mint building, 5th and Mission Streets, ca. 1930-40 (154 images, in San Francisco). See also 104.9.

Related Records: Plans of the San Francisco mint building, 1867-1950 (11 items, in San Francisco), in RG 121, Records of the Public Buildings Service.

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104.5.12 Records of the U.S. Assay Office, Seattle, WA

Textual Records (in Seattle): Correspondence, 1898-1955. Assay records, 1898-1955. Deposits of gold and silver, 1898-1939. Miscellaneous fiscal records, 1898-1955. Records relating to melting, 1898-1955.

Finding Aids: Title inventory available at National Archives-- Pacific Northwest Region, Seattle, WA.

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104.6 Records of and relating to the Annual Assay Commission
(AAC)
1817-1980

History: Established as a Presidential commission by the act of April 2, 1792, establishing the Mint of the United States, with responsibility to meet annually in Philadelphia, PA, in order to evaluate the quality and weight of newly minted coins selected at random from all coinage production and reserved for that purpose. Reconfirmed by the Coinage Act of 1873, establishing the Bureau of the Mint. Abolished by an act of March 14, 1980 (94 Stat. 96), with functions transferred to Secretary of the Treasury.

Textual Records: AAC proceedings, 1841-73 (in Philadelphia), 1874-1911, 1923, 1932-72. Record of coins reserved for the annual assay, 1817-38 (in Philadelphia), 1890, 1902-5, 1915-16, 1920-25. Records relating to coins received from, and returned to, branch mints for the annual assay, 1840-72 (in Philadelphia), 1885-89, 1917-25. Letters received by the Bureau of the Mint concerning Presidential appointments to the AAC, 1879, 1887, 1899-1906, 1914-18. General file, 1914-80, including correspondence with and concerning AAC members, background information sent to members, and some interfiled proceedings. Precedent file, 1936-80. Miscellaneous records, 1929-75.

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104.7 Records of the Office of the Secretary of the Treasury in
the Custody of the Bureau of the Mint
1792-1886

Textual Records: Register of letters sent to and received from the Mint of the United States, 1792-1835. Letters sent to the Director of the Mint, branch mint superintendents, members of Congress, and others, 1836-78; and branch mints, 1836-71. Letters received from the Director of the Mint, 1858-73; branch mints, 1834-71; and U.S. ministers and consuls, 1859-61. Reports concerning bullion received monthly by the Treasury Department from the Mint of the United States, 1838-42. Monthly reports of the California Assayer on gold deposits and assays, 1851-53. Reports relating to the U.S. Mint, San Francisco, 1857-86, with gaps. Copies of oaths of allegiance and of office taken by employees of the U.S. Mint, Philadelphia, 1861, 1870. Annual report of the U.S. Mint, Philadelphia, 1872.

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104.8 Motion Pictures (General)
1940

Coin minting and medal casting at the U.S. Mint, Philadelphia, PA (1940, 1 reel).

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104.9 Still Pictures (General) See Photographs under 104.4.5 and 104.5.5.
See Photographic Prints under 104.3.9 and 104.5.11.


Bibliographic note: Web version based on Guide to Federal Records in the National Archives of the United States. Compiled by Robert B. Matchette et al. Washington, DC: National Archives and Records Administration, 1995.
3 volumes, 2428 pages.

Ordering information

This Web version is updated from time to time to include records processed since 1995.


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