These old coins are getting more and more scarce. Not many were made: only 600,000 coins, which is very few in coin minting terms. There were 2,355,760,000 US nickels minted in 2000 alone.
Here is what the coin catalog says about the value of Puerto Rican 5 centavos of 1896:
worn: $40 US dollars
average circulated: $70
well preserved: $140
fully uncirculated: $400
You specify your coin, Richard, as 'little or no wear.' This is great, but it could be bad. Either you have a genuine 5 centavos worth 100s of US dollars, or you have a counterfeit worth zero. If you would like to send us a picture of your coin, we may be able to tell the difference. Use the Contact Us link.
The values quoted are catalog values. Use our Important Terminology page to understand what this weasel word means.
Here is some e-mail traffic that took place between Richard and CoinQuest after this appraisal was posted:
Thanks for your input on the 5 Centavos coin...the coin was purchased on Ebay. Item # 170435069148. Seller has a great feedback rating and sells coins regularly. If you type in the item# the page will appear showing the pictures of the coin. The coin actually looks better than the pictures in the sense that the bluish hue on the back of the coin isn't visible when looking at it with the naked eye. Maybe the camera angle or lighting cause this to show. The columns of Hurcules show the inscription 'PLUS' clearly and 'ULTRA' has fading on the T to the point where only the top half of the T shows faintly and fades away so that the bottom half isn't visible. Thank you
Oh, yeah, Richard. You did great. Nice coin. Certainly genuine. $73 is a good price. You had some good competition with those 17 bids. I like buying and selling on eBay because the collector community is so (1) large and (2) knowledgeable, you are getting fair market value.