The second of five strikes to be issued by the United States Mint in 2015 as part of its America the Beautiful Five Ounce Silver Uncirculated Coin™ series will be the 2015 Kisatchie America the Beautiful Silver Uncirculated Coin. A design on the reverse of the coin will be emblematic of Kisatchie National Forest located in the state of Louisiana.
Each of these coins will be struck from five ounces of .999 fine silver and will have a diameter of three inches. These are the same specifications used for all fifty-six coins of the America the Beautiful Silver Uncirculated Coin series.
They are also the same specifications used by the US Mint for its America the Beautiful Silver Bullion Coins™. The similarity does not end with their specifications as both series also feature identical imagery.
This imagery is originally designed for yet a third US Mint series – the America the Beautiful Quarters® Program and thus these coins contain the same obverse and and reverse designs as found on the Kisatchie National Forest Quarter. This includes an obverse portrait of George Washington, the first President of the United States.
The portrait has been seen on circulating quarter dollars since 1932, with minor variations. It is the original work of artist John Flanagan.
Unlike the quarters, the related bullion and these uncirculated coins have an intrinsic melt value associated with them. The melt value is approximately equal to the five ounce of silver that each contains. Thus, if silver is trading for $30 an ounce, the bullion coins and coins of this uncirculated series would each have a melt value of approximately $150.
The melt value dictates the pricing for the bullion coins as the US Mint sells them through authorized purchasers for a small premium above the current spot price of the five ounces of silver in each. Pricing, when initially sold directly to the public by the US Mint, for the uncirculated coins is higher as a numismatic premium is in place on each.
The reverse design for the Kisatchie America the Beautiful Coins (including this silver uncirculated strike) should be unveiled by the US Mint sometime in late 2014.
Kisatchie National Forest in Louisiana
Kisatchie National Forest is located in north central Louisiana. It was officially established on June 3, 1936.
Like other national forest units, Kisatchie offers visitors many different activities to choose from ranging from camping, to hiking, to boating, to fishing, etc. In addition, literally dozens of different species of mammals, reptiles, birds and fish call Kisatchie home.
The National Forest Service describes Kisatchie with the following paragraph:
"Kisatchie National Forest has more than 604,000 acres, is spread across seven parishes in Louisiana and is divided into five managed units called Ranger Districts. Hidden in the bayous, beneath the bald cypress groves and old growth pine, is a world of natural beauty, excitement, learning, recreation, resources and wildlife in their purest form. Come visit Louisiana’s only national forest."