Three Cent Nickel (1865 – 1889)

#1 Three Cent Nickel Buyer Las Vegas & Henderson

History

Due to the economic turmoil caused by the Civil War, much of the precious metal coins in circulation were heavily hoarded. Even the recently introduced Silver Three Cent piece was not immune to the hoarding. As a result, the United States Mint severely diminished the mintage of the Silver Three Cent piece and began replacing it in 1865 with the Nickel Three Cent piece actually overlapping production for the last nine years of the Silver coin’s mintage. The Nickel Three Cent piece became known as the Three Cent Nickel owing to its partial nickel composition. It was later supplanted by the more popular Five Cent coin and the “nickel” would continue to be the more popular term for five cent coins to the present day. The Nickel Three Cent piece would also be the last regularly circulating, non-gold, odd denomination, obsolete coin.

The Nickel Three cent piece was minted from 1865 until the series was discontinued in 1889 and all were struck at the Philadelphia mint. The obverse of the coin displays an image of Liberty that simply revised the same profile that the Mint’s Chief Engraver at the time had used on the Indian Head Cent, the gold One Dollar and Three dollar coins. The design of Liberty was fitted with a new hairstyle and a coronet inscribed with the word, “Liberty”. The coinage act that authorized the production of three cent nickels had contained a provision that required the use of the motto, “In God We Trust”, should appear on all coins large enough to bear the motto, however the new coin was deemed to be too small and so the words are not present on the coin. The words, “United States Of America”, do appear encircling Liberty’s head around the outside rim of the coin and the date of mintage appears below Liberty at the bottom of the coin. The reverse of the coin displays a large Roman numeral “III” surrounded by a large laurel wreath and tied with a ribbon at the bottom of the coin. The three cent piece weighs 1.94 grams with a composition of 75% copper and 25% nickel. The diameter remained constant throughout the series at 17.9 mm.

The Nickel Three Cent piece was not particularly popular when it was issued, due to its lack of any precious metal. Also, given the use of nickel in the composition, the chief provider of that metal began to lobby congress to authorize a larger coin that would in turn require the use of more nickel. These three cent coins are also not particularly popular among collectors today except for those collectors fascinated by obsolete, odd denomination coinage. Many common dates in the series, in good condition, can be purchased for about $15 to $20. High mint state examples of these same coins may cost $150 to $200. Very low mintages occurred during the latter years of the series, especially from 1883 to 1885, where fewer than 7,000 coins were minted for all three years combined, making these three years the key-dates of the series. Values for mint state specimens for these years can range from $2,500 to over $6,000. Prof coins were minted for the majority of the years of the series and, depending on the date, range in value from $250 to $2,000 in high-grade proof state.

Value

Because there are so many varied opinions on the condition (or grade) of a coin, the aforementioned values reflect the highest retail prices that have been obtained for those coins that have been assessed by a third party grading company. Such coins have been authenticated, graded and encapsulated by expert coin grading companies to minimize any doubt as to their quality and value and therefore their potential worth.

We Buy Nickel Three Cent Coins

We want to buy your coins and as a business it is our pledge to offer you the best value for your coins, however, always remember that the prices you may find online or in price guides usually represent the highest retail value for the coin in an already certified condition. As a trusted dealer we will have our coin specialists evaluate your coins at no cost and offer you a price that is both fair for you, but that also allows us to realize a reasonable profit.