When it comes to rising stars in the world of precious metals, the official gold bullion coin of Mexico is one of the hottest products out there. Investors and collectors across North America are paying more attention to the Mexican Gold Libertad, a result of the coin’s impressive design and purity level. A wide selection of Mexican Gold Libertads are currently available on JM Bullion.
Today, the Libertad is struck in both silver and gold, and serves as the official bullion coin of the Mexican government. Although the modern coin was first released in 1981 in gold, and produced intermittently throughout the 1980s and 1990s, the coin is the successor to the gold Centenario coin.
In 1921, the Mexican Mint unveiled a gold Centenario coin to commemorate the nation’s centennial celebration of its independence from Spain. The nation launched a number of celebratory events to commemorate the anniversary, including the construction of a statue in Mexico City to honor the Winged Victory, otherwise known as the angel of independence.
This original Centenario had a face value of 50 Pesos, but was not considered legal tender by the Mexican government or Banco de Mexico. The obverse side of that coin featured a replica of Winged Victory, with the Mexican coat of arms shown on the reverse side. Although the designs have changed on the modern Mexican Gold Libertad, the design motif remains the same.
The first Mexican Gold Libertad was struck in 1981 in a 1 oz, ½ oz, and ¼ oz weight. Minting in that particular year was relatively high, with a total of almost 1 million coins struck across the three weights. However, it would be another 10 years before the Mexican Gold Libertad was struck again. In 1991, the Mexican Mint brought back the Gold Libertad in the original three weights, with two additional fractional-weight coins: the 1/10 oz and 1/20 oz.
Production continued for four years this time, with 1 oz coin strikes produced to meet demand, and strict limits set on the fractional weight coins in three of the four years. Yet another halt to production occurred from 1995 to 2000. The coins were again struck in 2000, but just a total of 15,530 coins were minted across the five weights.
As of 2002, the Mexican Gold Libertad has enjoyed consistent production by the Mexican Mint, with increasing popularity helping pushing production number higher. To date, the Mexican Mint continues to produce the Mexican Gold Libertad in all five weights, with limited numbers of coins produced each year.
In addition to this bullion coin, the Mexican Mint produces a Mexican Gold Libertad in a proof version. The proof version first appeared in 1989 in a ½ oz weight for a one-year production run, reappeared in 2004 with just a ¼ oz proof, and entered regular production in 2005 in all five weights the bullion coin features.
As of 2018, collectors purchasing Mexican Gold Libertad coins have a second option in addition to the standard Proof Gold Libertad. In 2018, the Mexican Mint introduced a Reverse Proof Mexican Gold Libertad to the series. The coins are only available in this finish in the 1 oz and 1/2 oz gold weights. The 2018 debut offered a mintage of 1,000 coins that was cut to just 500 coins in 2019. This makes the Reverse Proof Gold Libertad the lowest minted collectible option in the years it has been available. Reverse Proof Mexican Gold Libertad Coins have opposing visual elements when compared to the Proof Gold Libertad. These coins have frosted background elements and mirrored design elements for unique visual contrast.
While Mexican Gold Libertad coins represent the modern issue of gold coins from the Mexican Mint, these are far from the only gold coins the mint has ever issued. Prior to the release of modern bullion coins made from pure gold, the Mexican Mint issued Gold Pesos as circulation currency. Mexican Gold Pesos came in a variety of different denominations issued in various stages throughout Mexican history. These coins include denominations of:
The most famous of these coins is the 50 Peso Mexican Gold Coin. Known affectionately as the Gold Centenario coin, this piece was issued by the Mexican Mint in 1921 to mark the 100th anniversary of the nation’s independence from Spain. The coin marked the debut of the Winged Victoria design that now graces the Mexican Libertad bullion coins. The Centenario has a face value of 50 Peso that is legal tender and was regularly issued from 1921 to 1931. The coins were shelved for more than a decade before returning in 1943 as demand for gold increased during World War II. The coins were issued with fresh date marks from 1943 to 1947 and from 1949 to 1972 with a commemorative 1947 date mark.
Other denominations of the Mexican Gold Peso debuted in 1870 during the reign of Emperor Maximilian during the Second Mexican Empire. Many of these other denominations of Gold Peso coins debuted in the early 20th century. These coins often feature a denomination and wreath element on one side with a bust of a national leader on the other. Those images will vary by the date mark and period in Mexican history.
When the Mexican Gold Libertad was first unveiled in 1981 as a bullion coin, it featured the original design sets from the gold Centenario coin. On the obverse side of the coin was the front-facing image of Winged Victory. She was featured striding forward with a wreath held aloft in her right hand, and broken chains in her left. The face value was engraved on the left, the metal content and mint mark on the right, and the coin’s weight and year of minting is below.
This original depiction of the angel of independence was an accurate reproduction of her original image. The wreath in her right hand and the broken chains of colonialism represent the push for freedom by Mexican people. In the background, the twin volcanic peaks of Popocatepetl and Iztaccihuatl rise to meet the horizon, and are named for a pair of ancient Aztec lovers.
On the reverse side of the original Mexican Gold Libertad is the coat of arms for Mexico. The golden eagle is the national symbol of Mexico, and is featured in the coat of arms locked in battle with a rattlesnake. The phrase “Estados Unidos Mexicanos” is engraved above the seal.
As of 2000, the Mexican Gold Libertad features a new, updated design. The statue of Winged Victory is now featured in a side-profile relief, with the angel of independence reaching her right arm out in front of her to hold aloft the wreath, as the chains of colonialism remain clutched in her left hand behind her. The engravings have been shifted to feature the face value, metal content, year of minting, and purity above her image, with the mint mark on the right. The volcanic peaks remain in the background.
On the reverse side, the modern coat of arms for Mexico is featured in the middle, with the phrase “Estados Unidos Mexicanos” above and a wreath below. Surrounding the image, you’ll now see 10 historic versions of the coat of arms used by the government since the nation gained independence.
JM Bullion has a wide variety of Mexican Gold Libertads, with many of them certified by either the Numismatic Guaranty Corporation or Professional Coin Grading Service. These two certification companies are the most respected grading services, and earning grades from these companies adds instant value to any Mexican Gold Libertad.
Some of the grades and labels you’ll see on JM Bullion include:
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