Money law the Coinage Act of April 2, 1792 (1 Stat. 246)




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MONEY LAW
The Coinage Act of April 2, 1792
(1 Stat. 246)

Statute I.


April 2, 1792 Chapter XVI.--An Act establishing a Mint, and


regulating the coins of the United States.

Mint established Section I. Be it enacted by the Senate and


at the seat of House of Representatives of the United States
government. of American in Congress assembled, and it is
hereby enacted and declared, That a mint for
the purpose of a national coinage be, and the
same is established, to be situate and
carried on at the seat of the government of
the United States, for the time being; and
that for the well conducting of the business
of the said mint, there shall be the
following officers and persons, namely, --a
Director, an Assayer, a Chief Coiner, an
Engarver, a Treasurer. ...

Species of the Section 9. And be it further enacted, That


coins to be there shall be from time to time struck and
struck. coined at the said mint, coins of gold,
silver, and copper, of the following denomi-
nations, values and descriptions, viz.
Eagles EAGLES--each to be of he value of ten dollars
or units, and to contain two hundred and
forty-seven grains and four eighths of a
grain of pure, or two hundred and seventy
grains of standard gold.
Half Eagles HALF EAGLES--each to be of the value of five
dollars, and to contain one hundred and
twenty-three grains and six eighths of a
grain of pure, or one hundred and thirty-five
grains of standard gold.
Quarter Eagles QUARTER EAGLES--each to be of the value of
two dollars and a half dollar, and to contain
sixty-one grains and seven eighths of a grain
of pure, or sixty-seven grains and four
eighths of a grain of standard gold.
Dollars or Units DOLLARS OR UNITS--each to be of the value of
a Spanish milled dollar as the same is now
current, and to contain three hundred and
seventy-one grains and four sixteenth parts
of a grain of pure, or four hundred and
sixteen grains of standard silver.
Half Dollars HALF DOLLARS--each to be of half the value of
the dollar or unit, and to contain one
hundred and eighty-five grains and ten
sixteenth parts of a grain of pure, or two
hundred and eight grains of standard silver.
Quarter Dollars QUARTER DOLLAR--each to be of one fourth the
value of the dollar or unit, and to contain
ninety-two grains and thirteen sixteenth
parts of a grain of pure, or one hundred and
four grains of standard silver.
Dismes DISMES--each to be of the value of one tenth
of a dollar or unit, and to contain thirty-
seven grains and two sixteenth parts of a
grain of pure, or forty-one grains and three
fifths parts of a grain of standard silver.
Half Dismes HALF DISMES--each to be of the value of one
twentieth of a dollar, and to contain
eighteen grains and nine sixteenth parts of a
grain of pure, or twenty grains and four
fifths parts of a grain of standard silver.
Cents CENTS--each to be of the value of the one
hundredth part of a dollar, and to contain
eleven penny-weights of copper.
Half Cents HALF CENTS--each to be of the value of half a
Act of May 8, a cent, and to contain five penny-weights and
1792. a half a penny-weight of copper.

Of what devices Section 10. And be it further enacted, That,


upon the said coins respectively, there shall
be the following devices and legends, namely:
Upon one side of each of the said coins there
shall be an impression emblematic of liberty,
with an inscription of the word Liberty, and
the year of the coinage; and upon the reverse
of each of the gold and silver coins there
shall be the figure or representation of an
eagle, with this inscription, "UNITED STATES
OF AMERICA" and upon the reverse of each of
the copper coins, there shall be an
inscription which shall express the
denomination of the piece, namely, cent or
half cent, as the case may require.

Proportional value Section 11. And be it further enacted, That


of gold and silver the proportional value of gold and silver in
all coins which shall by law be current as
money within the United States, shall be
fifteen to one, according to quantity in
weight, of pure gold or pure silver; that is
to say, every fifteen payments, with one
pound weight of pure gold, and so in
proportion as to any greater or less
quantities of the respective metals.

Standard for gold Section 12. And be it further enacted, That


coins, and alloy the standard for all gold coins of the United
how to be regulated States shall be eleven parts fine to one part
alloy; and accordingly that eleven parts fine
to one part alloy; and accordingly that
eleven parts in twelve of the entire weight
of each of the said coins shall consist of
pure gold, and the remaining one twelfth part
of alloy; and the said alloy shall be
composed of silver and copper, in such
proportions not exceeding one half silver as
shall be found convenient; to be regulated by
the director of the mint, for the time being,
with the approbation of the President of the
United States, until further provision shall
be made by law. And to the end that the
necessary information may be had in order to
the making of such further provision, it
Director to report shall be the duty of the director of the
the practice of mint, at the expiration of a year commencing
mint touching the the operations of the said mint, to report to
alloy of gold Congress the practice thereof during the said
coins. year, touching the composition of the alloy
of the said gold coins, the reasons for such
practice, and the experiments and
observations which shall have been made
concerning the effects of different
proportions of silver and copper in the said
alloy.

Standard for silver Section 13. And be it further enacted, That


coins--alloy how the standard for all silver coins of the
to be regulated. United States, shall be one thousand four
hundred and eighty-five parts fine to one
hundred and seventy-nine parts alloy; and
accordingly that one thousand four hundred
and eighty-five parts in one thousand six
hundred and sixty-four parts of the entire
weight of each of the said coins shall
consist of pure silver, and the remaining
Alloy. one hundred and seventy-nine parts of alloy;
which alloy shall be wholly of copper.

Penalty on de- Section 19. And be it further enacted, That


basing the coins. if any of the gold or silver coins which
shall be struck or coined at the said mint
shall be debased or made worse as to the
proportion of the fine gold or fine silver
therein contained, or shall be of less weight
or value than the same out to be pursuant to
the directions of this act, through the
default or with the connivance of any of the
officers or persons who shall be employed at
the said mint, for the purpose of profit or
gain, or otherwise with a fraudulent intent,
and if any of the said officers or persons
shall embezzle any of the metals which shall
at any time be committed to their charge for
the purpose of being coined, or any of the
coins which shall be struck or coined at the
said mint, every such officer or person who
shall commit any or either of the said
offenses, shall be deemed guilty of felony,
and shall suffer death.

Money of account Section 20. And be if further enacted, That


to be expressed in the money of account of the United States
dollars, etc. shall be expressed in dollars, or units,
dismes or tenths, cents or hundredths, and
the milles or thousandths, a disme being the
tenth part of a dollar, a cent the hundredth
part of a dollar, a mille the thousandth part
of a dollar, and that all accounts in the
public offices and all proceedings in the
courts of the United States shall be kept and
had in conformity to this regulation.


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