The First Edition Was Written During World War II, and Published in 1946.
Collectors Have Bought More Than 25 Million Copies Over the Years.
Best-Selling Annual Guide Prices Nearly 8,000 Items;
Reports Dramatic Market and Hobby Changes;
Covers Circulating, Commemorative, and Bullion Coins
(Pelham, AL) — Whitman Publishing announces that the Diamond Anniversary 75th edition of the coin-collecting hobby’s annual Guide Book of United States Coins (popularly known as the “Red Book”) will debut April 6, 2021. The new volume includes completely updated prices and auction data reflecting the current market for collectible U.S. coins, along with historical information and guidance on how to build valuable collections. The Red Book can be pre-ordered online (including at Whitman.com) in several formats, and after April 6 will be available from booksellers and hobby shops nationwide.
Coin collectors have used the Red Book to value their collections since the 1st edition was published in 1946. Today, Senior Editor Jeff Garrett coordinates the book’s support network of more than 100 professional coin dealers and researchers. He credits the Red Book’s 75 years of success to teamwork: “Whitman relies on a nationwide group of active retailers, auctioneers, historians, and other specialists with decades of experience. Thanks to their expertise we have the most current and accurate market information and recent scholarship for every coin series.”
Research Editor Q. David Bowers has described the Red Book as a one-book library on American coins. “In a single convenient volume, you get photographs and details on every U.S. series from the 1790s to the current year’s commemoratives and circulating coins,” Bowers said. “The Red Book makes mintage data, coin designs, specifications, grading instructions, and market values easy to access and understand.”
Editor Emeritus Kenneth Bressett has worked on the Red Book since 1959, and was the right-hand man to the book’s author, R.S. Yeoman. “Every year the Red Book becomes more useful for coin collectors,” Bressett said. “Generations of hobbyists have found it indispensable. We are delighted to note that in its 75th year, the Red Book has crossed the 25-million-copies threshold.”
The 75th-edition Red Book is 464 pages long and prices nearly 8,000 entries in up to 9 grades each, with more than 32,000 retail valuations in total.
The book covers legal-tender United States coins from 1792 to date, from copper half cents to $20 gold double eagles, commemoratives, and bullion, plus earlier coins and tokens that circulated in colonial times. With every new edition the latest coins from the United States Mint are updated—Lincoln cents, Jefferson nickels, Roosevelt dimes, America the Beautiful quarters, Kennedy half dollars, Native American dollars, American Innovation dollars, commemorative coins, bullion coins, and government-packaged coin sets. The book also includes popular specialized collectibles such as error coins, Civil War tokens, Confederate coins, Philippine coins struck under U.S. sovereignty, private and territorial gold pieces, pattern coins, Hawaiian and Puerto Rican coinage, Alaska tokens, So-Called Dollars, and special modern gold coins.
These are illustrated by 2,000 photographs, including enlarged close-ups of rare and valuable die varieties.
Inside the 75th-edition Diamond Anniversary Red Book:
New commemorative coins. The 75th edition features coins from the Mint’s two new commemorative programs for 2021. The National Law Enforcement Memorial and Museum program includes half dollars, silver dollars, and five-dollar gold coins. The Christa McAuliffe commemorative coin is a silver dollar.
Other new U.S. Mint coins and sets. The 75th-edition Red Book includes 96 new Mint products added since the 74th edition. Mintages of circulating coins have been updated across the board using government-supplied data and the latest numismatic research.
Collectors will also find complete coverage of the full range of American Eagle and other popular bullion coins and sets (in silver, gold, platinum, and palladium), with mintages and values for each.
Significant new coins this year include the “Washington Crossing the Delaware” quarter dollar, the 1921–2021 centennial “Morgan” and “Peace” dollars, and new reverse designs for the American Silver Eagle and American Gold Eagle.
A study of foreign coins that circulated in America. The Diamond Anniversary Red Book continues a section that debuted with the 70th edition: an overview of foreign coins that circulated as legal tender in the British North American colonies and in the United States until the late 1850s. This includes photographs, history, and pricing for collectible Spanish-American, Dutch, French, and English coins minted from the 1550s to the early 1800s, when Spain’s American colonies won independence.
Recent research. Updates based on recent scholarship can be found in sections including pre-federal coins and tokens, and regular federal issues. Changes reflect research into the 1776-dated Continental Currency pieces; Flying Eagle cent mintages; 1974 aluminum Lincoln cents; and a newly listed doubled-die obverse two-cent piece.
Revamped commemorative coins and sets. The section on commemorative coins has been updated. It also has been extensively revised to group together all products (single coins and sets) for each coinage program. The specific contents of each government-issued commemorative set have been reviewed and confirmed or updated. And a new section, “Other Collectible Sets,” includes special non-program sets like Coin and Chronicles Sets and Coin and Currency Sets.
The latest Mint data and information. Details of the upcoming Circulating Collectible Coin Redesign Act of 2020 have been spelled out. Every current coin program has been updated with available mintages. New coin listings include 42 standard Mint issues, Lincoln cents through American Innovation dollars; 12 commemorative issues; 33 bullion issues; the final America the Beautiful quarter (for the Tuskegee Airmen National Historic Site) and related five-ounce silver bullion issues; the latest Native American dollar; the American Innovation dollars for New Hampshire, Virginia, New York, and North Carolina; the Mint’s first-ever colorized coins; two new commemorative programs; and the 2021 annual Proof and Mint sets.
New photographs. The Diamond Anniversary edition is updated with 78 new photographs, including many silver and gold coins from the 1700s and early 1800s; new close-ups of privy marks and lettering varieties; pattern coins; private and territorial gold pieces; and other colonial and modern coins.
Auction records. As in past years, collectors benefit from the Red Book’s recent auction records provided for significant rare coins. Typeset throughout the charts are nearly 200 notable auction results. Combined with the listed retail prices, the auction data help advanced collectors understand the modern market for high-priced rarities.
In addition, the appendix of the “Top 250 U.S. Coin Prices Realized at Auction” has been fully updated. A record 118 auction sales were higher than $1 million each. The coin at #250, a 1795 Draped Bust silver dollar [BB-52], sold for $646,250—more than $28,000 higher than last year’s coin in that ranking.
A bibliography for further research. In a positive measure of the health of the hobby and ongoing numismatic research, the Red Book’s newly revised and updated bibliography includes more than two dozen standard references published over the past five years.
The cover of the spiral-bound Diamond Anniversary 75th-edition Red Book features three significant dollar coins: a Sacagawea golden dollar; an American Silver Eagle with the classic Heraldic Eagle reverse by John Mercanti; and a Morgan silver dollar. The hardcover Diamond Anniversary Red Book has silver-foil imprinting instead of the usual gold-foil, and its back cover features a silver-foil Diamond Anniversary emblem.
All versions and formats (hardcover; spiralbound hardcover; spiralbound softcover; and Large Print) of the 75th-edition Red Book will be available online, and at bookstores and hobby shops nationwide.
By R.S. Yeoman; senior editor Jeff Garrett; research editor Q. David Bowers; editor emeritus Kenneth Bressett.
$15.95 convenient lay-flat spiralbound
$17.95 classic red hardcover
$19.95 spiralbound hardcover
$29.95 Large Print Edition
$49.95 expanded Deluxe Edition (Mega Red) (1,504 pages)