1936 to 1955 Silver Proof Sets
Proof sets from 1936 to 1955 came in square boxes and stapled in cello, this cello often toned the coins. The half dollar, quarter, and dime consist of 90% silver and all other coins are non-silver. One exception is in 1942, some sets came with a 35% silver Jefferson Nickel. In 1955 the proof sets came in boxes and flat packs with orange/brown envelopes. NO proof sets issued from 1943 to 1949.
1955 to 1964 Silver Proof Sets
The half dollar, quarter, and dime consist of 90% silver and all other coins are not silver. These sets came in an orange envelopes and housed in cello packs.
1965 to 1967 SMS Set With 40% Kennedy Half Dollar
No proof sets issued from 1965 to 1967 and only the Kennedy Half were clad in 40% silver, all other coins are non-silver. 1965 SMS sets, or Special Mint Sets, came in a white envelope, flat pack, and the 1966 through 1967 came in a rectangular blue box and a snap-shut, plastic holder. Coins can easily be removed from the 1966-1967 sets and some sets have been placed 1965 sets inside these snap-shut cases, then sold, but 1965 SMS sets where never issued in hard plastic cases.
1968 to 1970 “Silver” Proof Sets
1968 saw the return of proof sets and from 1968 to 1970 they came in blue boxes and contained a 40% clad, Kennedy Half Dollar. All other coins are non-silver.
1971 to 1972 Clad Proof Sets
1971 and 1972 proof sets came in blue boxes but all coins are non-silver and it is called a clad set even though the nickel and cent are solid mixed alloys.
1973 to 1982 Clad Proof Sets
1973 to 1982 clad proof sets didn’t have any silver coins, they came in a black box and in addition they included a Eisenhower Dollar until 1978, then from 1979 to 1981 they contained a proof Susan B. Anthony Dollar, but in 1982 they contained a US Treasury Medal instead of the SBA dollar.
In 1976, to celebrate America’s Bicentennial the US Mint released a 40% silver proof set and mint set, these sets contained a Eisenhower Dollar, Kennedy Half Dollar and Washington Quarter. The proof sets came in a special box, with Styrofoam and a folding blue case to house the coins in “air-tites”. The 1976 mint set version came in a solid, red envelope or a red and white envelope. See images below.
1983 to 1991 Clad Proof Sets
1983 saw the return to a blue box and in 1984 to 1991 the boxes are purple. All coins are non-silver and the nickel and penny are a solid alloy, non-silver mixture.
1992 to 1998 Proof Sets
From 1992 to 1998 the US Mint released clad proof sets and silver proof sets, the silver proof sets came in a black box and the clad sets came in a green box. The silver proof sets in the black box came with a 90% silver Kennedy Half Dollar, Washington Quarter and Roosevelt Dime, all other coins are non-silver. The clad sets in the green box are all non-silver.
In addition the US Mint released silver Premier proof sets that came in a larger black box and a hinged display case, and contained the same silver and non-silver coins as the regular black box silver sets.
1999 to 2009 Proof Sets
Proof sets from 1999 to 2008 came in silver and clad versions. Silver proof sets were packed in red boxes while clad sets were packed in blue boxes. Both versions contained 5 State Quarters, then in 2007 and 2008 they included the Presidential Dollars. The red boxed silver sets contain 90% silver issues of the Kennedy Half Dollar, State Quarters, and Roosevelt Dime.
2010 Proof Set
In 2010 the sets came in 90% silver with a red and white box and the clad sets came in a blue and white box. Also 2010 saw the end of the State Quarter series as this set contained the Commonwealth and Territories Quarters. As with the 1999 to 2009 sets the quarters, half dollar and dime are 90% silver alloy.
2011 to 2021 Proof Sets
Proof sets from 2011 to 2021 saw some box design changes beginning with the silver sets released in a mostly black box with a silver color side stripe and the clad in a black box with a brown side stripe. Also, these sets contained the new series of quarters called American the Beautiful or ATB and they came in silver and clad versions. The silver sets contained 90% silver quarters, Kennedy Half Dollar and Roosevelt Dime, but in 2018 the silver alloy was change to .999 silver for these same denominations.
In 2013 the Mint changed the box design a final time with an image of the Washington Monument at Sunrise giving the box a white-orange appearance and the clad coins are housed in an holder with a orange or brownish insert . The silver version is the Washington Monument at Sunset and all silver coins are housed in a holder with a black insert.
In 2016 was the end of the Presidential Dollar program because only deceased Presidents are allowed on these coins, but in 2020 a George H.W Bush Presidential Dollar coin was issued to honor our 41st President after his death in 2018.
2017 saw the release of a 225th US Mint Anniversary, enhanced uncirculated set with a mintage of only 225,000 but all coins are non-silver or mostly clad.
2018 saw the release of a 50th Anniversary of the San Francisco Mint’s first proof coin issue with a mintage of only 200,000. The coins had a special reverse proof finish and contained the .999 silver Kennedy Half Dollar, ABT quarters and Roosevelt Dime, all other coins are non-silver.
In the years 1983, 1984, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996 and 1997 the US Mint issued Prestige Proof Sets that contained clad coins but with the addition of a different Commemorative 90% Silver Dollar for each year. See image below.
Beginning in 2012, and up to the present, the US Mint released a Limited Edition Proof set that contained the silver Kennedy Half Dollars, silver ABT quarters with the addition of a .999 American Silver Eagle. These sets come in large, square boxes. See image below.