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Coin Pieces Produced Before The 1900's

Coins Worth Having Around


Today we will be discussing some very old pieces. All of these coins are unique in their own way as well as being worth much more than their marked, or unmarked, values. The stories behind each are outstanding and simply worth knowing. Coins have an astounding history for being something we are so quick to leave behind or give away.

It is interesting to read into the United States history. I personally love to learn about history in general, but even more so when it comes to our own history.

Anyways, lets get into it!

1792 Half Disme

First off we have the 1792 Half Disme.

Interesting name right? Disme?... What does that mean? After doing some research.. aka Googling it. I found that the word disme is a French spelling meaning "tenth." Meaning this coin is a nickel, face value of 5 cents! However, its diameter is smaller than a modern day penny coming in at 17.5mm. Yet the weight is 20.8 grams, that is more than a modern day half dollar.

This coin was made in a basement in Philadelphia. Why a basement? Well they were still building the mint factory.

I tried to find a 1792 Half Disme that had recently sold on eBay, however I was unable to come across one. I then of course googled it and found some information about one sold for almost $2million! This piece was originally owned by the first United States Mint Director, David Rittenhouse.



1796 Draped Bust Quarter

The 1796 Draped Bust Quarter is the first ever United States quarter to be produced for circulation. There were around six thousand of these quarters minted and produced.

The suggested designer is Robert Scot. Yes, there is some history here. Why wouldn't there be.

Alright, so the original designer Gilbert Stuart ended up being so disappointed in his design of Mrs. William Bingham that his name was all together forgotten until hundreds of years later.

Robert Scot was the one who ended up transferring the sketch to the coinage. Not having an understanding of what he was doing,the transfer has been noted as an absolute failure.

There are two variations of this piece. A high and a low. Referring to the "6" in 1796 being higher than it should be or lower than it should be.

1851 Three (3) Cent Silver

Unlike the 1792 Half Disme, the 1851 3 Cent Silver piece is the smallest and lightest produced United States coin. Coming in at only 14mm in diameter and .80 grams in weight. The 3 cent piece is also known as a Trime.

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Over 5 million 1851 3 Cent Silver pieces were minted. I couldn't help but to think.. Why would we ever need a 3 cent coin? Anymore, most people think very little of coinage. Back in the 1700's and 1800's coins were respectable based on a variety of categories. The 3 cent piece was originally to facilitate the purchase of a 3 cent stamp.

Of course I looked it up on ebay. This beauty has sold from $7.75 to over $6000.00!



1864 Two (2) Cent Coin

As if the 3 cent coin wasn't odd, here is a 2 cent coin.

The 1864 Two Cent Coin was the first US coin to have "IN GOD WE TRUST" on the piece. It is crazy to think of a time when we didn't have it on all of our money, coins or paper notes.

There are two variations of this piece. The smaller and larger moto. As you can see if the picture above, the newly added wording "IN GOD WE TRUST" is to large on one coin. Yet it is to small on the other coin.

Almost 20 million of the pieces were minted in Philadelphia. The Mint Act of 1873 abolished the production of this coin.

The designer is James Barton Longacre.

Found a few recently sold on ebay for as low as $2.02, and as high over $2000.00.



1875 S 20 Cent "Double Dime"

These pieces are not a particularly rare coin, even though I could only find two sold on eBay. There were exactly 1.15 million minted, and well over 1000 certified over the years.

The 1875 S 20 Cent "Double Dime" sells on eBay for about $90 a piece. Defiantly not as high of a price as these other coins.

Nor did it have a very interesting story. It was designed by William Barber.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2022 Darline Schuh

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