Jim Smith writes: I have a sterling silver proof set of $20 dollar Virgin Island coins, 25 coins in the set from 1985. Queen Elizabeth on one side and a lost or found treasure on the other side. Each coin depicts a different treasure. They were minted by the Franklin Mint (2500 sets) and are legal tender. What is the current value and where does one find this type of information for these coins.
These commemorative issues were created by agreement by the Franklin Mint and the government of the British Virgin Islands. Franklin Mint, a private organization, paid a fee to mint these coins in the name of BVI. They promoted them and marketed them to collectors.
Since the British Virgin Islands does not have their own currency, they use United States dollars, therefore these “coins” could hardly be called “Legal Tender”. The policy of the BVI government seems to be that they will trade them for face value when the silver content exceeds the face value. So, technically they could be legal tender under the above circumstances. Since these “coins” contain .5678 troy ounce of pure silver, silver would have to be trading at more than $36 per troy ounce before the banks in BVI are going to line up to buy these things. As of the date of this writing, silver is currently trading at around $20 a troy ounce.
These still are attractive coins and thus there may be a potential premium over their silver value. See your local coin dealer.