From 1892 until 1954, a total of fifty-nine different commemorative issues were authorized by Congress and struck by the Philadelphia, Denver or San Francisco Mints. Fifty issues were struck in silver which included one quarter, the Isabella Quarter struck for the Columbian Exposition in 1893, forty-eight half dollars and one dollar, the Lafayette Dollar issued in 1900. The nine gold issues included five one dollar coins, two $2 1/2 dollar coins and two fifty dollar coins, both issued in connection with the Panama-Pacific Exposition in 1915. All commemorative issues were legal tender and used to raise funds for different causes as an alternative to raising taxes to fund public projects.
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