Details are important when it comes to coin collecting. Regardless if you’re collecting as a hobby, or for a career, the slightest details can have a major impact on the value of a coin. A coin collector will benefit from a strong understanding of both Canadian and world history. With so many coins on the market, it’s impossible to be an expert on every type of coin. The Canadian Silver Dollar is a rare exception, this coin has a very known and clear history.

Canadian commerce in Canada happened long before the arrival of Europeans. First Nations people operated on a bartering system. There is evidence of special objects such as copper shields were used to purchase goods in the early 16th century. Eventually prized items such furs for supplies. Many tribes accepted silver as payment for goods.

Early French colonists bartered with goods and also used metal coins for commerce.  Currency was in short supply in the New World, and early Canadians made due with a limited supply. Throughout Canada’s early history, the currency would come from England and fur trade played a heavy role in the economy. There were no minting facilities in Canada during the 1850s, so 1 cent, 5 cents, 20 cents and 50 cents coins were minted in England and shipped across the ocean. The Dominion of Canada was formed in 1867 and the new central government took control of the nation’s currency and banking moving forward.

The Canadian Silver Dollar made its first appearance in 1935 when the Royal Canadian Mint issued the coin. The coin commemorated King George V’s silver jubilee and reverse of the coin featured a Voyageur and an aboriginal paddling a birch-bark canoe. The 1935 Canadian Silver Dollar is very collectible and serves as a reminder of Canada’s unique history. It’s known for its faint lines in the sky, representing the Northern Lights.

Silver Dollars were very popular, the coin is well-known for actually containing silver. In 1967 the coin was produced using less-expensive nickel. There are some Canadian Silver Dollars minted today that do contain silver, but these coins are solely for collecting and are not placed into circulation.