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Tri State Refining
Tri State Refining vintage 1 Oz silver bullion coins and bars

Tri State Refining

Tri State Refining was a mint based in South Dakota which began operating around 1976 and continued through the early 1982. It re-incorporated under the name Tri-State Mint in 1988 and merged with Von Hoff International to become Medallic Art Company LTD in 1996. That company, originally the famed Medallic Art Company begun in New York in 1903, had been purchased by Robert Hoff in 1989. It was finally dissolved in 2012.

In 1976, Lorentz Opdahl started a small business extracting silver from X-ray and other film products (Tri-State) near Hudson, South Dakota. Robert Hoff, who was married to Opdahl's daughter, managed Tri-State Refining. Opdahl approached Hoff in 1980 concerning the purchase of Tri-State and Hoff agreed to purchase the business. The agreement included payments in silver as well as monthly payments and rental property arrangements. In February 1981, Hoff incorporated the business as Tri-State Refining. Tri-State continued to make monthly rental payments as some of the business remained on the leased property.

Conflicts arose between Opdahl and Hoff resulting in contract breaches. Tri-State experienced financial difficulties in 1981 and Hoff suspected these difficulties stemmed from internal problems and hired a private investigator. This investigation led to a 1982 confession by an employee that silver had been stolen from Tri-State and that Opdahl had been a party to that. Lawsuits were filed, but the mint was unable to continue operations due to the financial difficulties.

During the period of time that Tri State Refining was in operation, it produced several bars and rounds. The bars were produced in several sizes from 1 Oz to 100 Oz. Two styles of rounds were produced, one dated 1976 with the common Eagle/Bell obverse and the other undated bearing a dragon on the obverse. The Eagle/Bell motif was also reproduced in 1988 by Tri State Mint. All products minted by Tri State Refining were minted with .999 Fine Silver

 

Tri State Refining Products

     • Eagle/Bell 1 Oz round (two varieties)
     • Dragon 1 Oz rounds
     • TSM 1 Oz and 1/2 Oz rounds (1988)

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