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HomeUS Coins1866 Three Cent Nickel : A Collector's Guide

1866 Three Cent Nickel : A Collector’s Guide

1866 Three-Cent Nickel. Image: Heritage Auctions (visit www.ha.com).
1866 Three-Cent Nickel. Image: Heritage Auctions (visit www.ha.com).

The United States Mint in Philadelphia struck 4,801,000 Three-Cent Nickel coins in 1866, a steep decline from the year before. The issue is considered a type coin but is conditionally challenging. While the 1866 Three Cent Nickel survives in sufficient numbers in Mint State, Gem examples are uncommon and Superb Gem examples are rare.

1866 Three Cent Nickel. Image: Heritage Auctions (visit www.ha.com).
1866 Three-Cent Nickel. Image: Heritage Auctions (visit www.ha.com).

In late die state, the reverse will exhibit a series of cracks and a cud above the first Roman numeral.

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Market Data and Noteworthy Specimens

Top Population: PCGS MS67+ (1, 3/2024). NGC MS68 (1, 3/2024). CAC MS67 (5:0 stickered:graded, 3/2024).

  • NGC MS68 #548857-014: “The Western Hills Collection”, Heritage Auctions, June 2, 2005, Lot 5355 – $11,270Streaky toning. Toning spot on neck. Late die state. With a raised mound caused by a die cavity atop the first Roman numeral. Die cracks on the reverse along with distorted die image. Struck with clashed dies.
  • PCGS MS67+ CAC #37373151: As NGC MS67+ CAC #4263202-001. Heritage Auctions, August 12, 2015, Lot $7,637.50; Heritage Auctions, February 4, 2016, Lot 3114 – $5,875; Heritage Auctions, October 3, 2016, Lot 3037 – $6,168.75; Heritage Auctions, January 10, 2019, Lot 4186 – $4,560. As PCGS MS67+ CAC #37373151. Heritage Auctions, August 14, 2019, Lot 3711 – $14,400. Crossed to PCGS. At PCGS, top pop, pop one at the time of the sale. Late die state. With a raised mound caused by a die cavity atop the first Roman numeral. Die cracks on the reverse along with distorted die image. Struck with clashed dies.
  • PCGS MS67 CAC #39324464: As PCGS MS67 CAC #28256645. Legend Rare Coin Auctions, February 19, 2015, Lot 51 – $18,212.50; Legend Rare Coin Auctions, September 3, 2015, Lot 46 – $9,106.25. As PCGS MS67 CAC #39324464. Legend Rare Coin Auctions, September 8, 2022, Lot 30 – $8,812.50. Regraded.
  • PCGS MS67 CAC #25603612: Heritage Auctions, June 9, 2016, Lot 4307 – $7,637.50.
  • PCGS MS67 CAC #25537358: As PCGS MS67 #21765613. “The Bruce Scher Collection”, Heritage Auctions, February 24, 2005, Lot 4002 – $12,218.75. Bruce Scher on insert. Heritage Auctions, April 2006, Lot 786; Heritage Auctions, March 2009, Lot 415; As PCGS MS67 CAC #25537358. Heritage Auctions, August 5, 2014, Lot 3227 – $9,988.68.
  • NGC MS67* #1962971-001: Heritage Auctions, April 26, 2006, Lot 786 – $6,900. Late die state. With a raised mound caused by a die cavity atop the first Roman numeral. Die cracks on the reverse along with distorted die image. Struck with clashed dies.
  • PCGS MS67 #21840134: Heritage Auctions, February 23, 2005, Lot 5694 – $10,120.

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Coin Specifications

Country: United States of America
Year Of Issue: 1866
Denomination: Three Cents (USD)
Mint Mark: None (Philadelphia)
Mintage: 4,801,000
Alloy: .750 Copper, .250 Nickel
Weight: 1.94 g
Diameter: 17.90 mm
Edge: Plain
OBV Designer: James Barton Longacre
REV Designer: James Barton Longacre
Quality: Business Strike

 

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Learn about the 1866 Three Cent Nickel Proof coin

CoinWeek Notes
CoinWeek Notes
CoinWeek Notes presents expert analysis and insights from Charles Morgan and Hubert Walker, the award-winning editors of CoinWeek.com.

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