US Liberty Head V Nickel  1883 to 1913
US Liberty Head V Nickel 1883 to 1913

Goose - Your Liberty, or 'V', nickel catalogs for $2 US dollars in worn condition. The one in the picture is uncirculated. It catalogs for $120. You can see what a difference condition makes to coin collectors. They are willing to pay big money for coins in uncirculated condition. Here are some typical catalog values for common-date liberty V nickels:

worn: $2 US dollars approximate catalog value
average circulated: $8
well preserved: $20
fully uncirculated: $120

Be sure you understand what 'catalog' means. Look up the meaning on our Terminology page.

Most V nickels are like Goose's, that is, they have common dates and the catalog values above apply. The 'key dates' are 1885, 1886, and 1912S. Here are their catalog values in average circulated condition, with a few 'semi-keys' included:

1884: $40
1885: $800
1886: $375
1887: $33
1888: $90
1889 to 1893: $30
1894: $120
1895: $30
1896: $50
1912S: $375

Use our Terminology page to understand what 'catalog value' means.

There is an important minting variety for Lib nickels: the 1883 no cents variety. When the coins were first minted in 1883, the reverse design omitted the word 'cents.' Apparently there was confusion about the value of the coin. Was it 5 dollars or 5 cents? The Mint added 'cents' part of the way through 1883. It turns out that the original no cents variety is much more common than the with cents variety. If you have an 1883 coin without the 'cents' on the reverse, it is worth the same as common-date coins outlined above. The 1883 with cents variety catalogs about $40 in average circulated condition.

Too bad you don't have a 1913 V nickel. There are only 5 of those known to exist. The last one sold at auction for (are you ready?) $1,840,000.

Coin: 424 , Genre: United States
Requested by: goose, Fri, 24-Apr-2009 22:59:21 GMT
Answered by: Paul, Fri, 10-May-2013 14:38:45 GMT
Reviewed by CoinQuest, appraisal ok, Thu, 08-Jan-2015 22:12:51 GMT
Requester description: 1903 looks like a nickel, it has leaves outlining a 'V'
Tags: liberty head v nickel nickels nickle nichel nikel leaves leaf greenery leafs boughs liafy bush leave leaved bough leafe leafed leafy leavs foliage wreath five 5 cent cents wreathed rief reif reef wreathe wreat garland wreth wreah wreaths peny pennys pennies penny crown tiara crowned crowns tiarra crowning tiera


thank for your help i have 4 v nickels i have 1897,1908,1905,1912 the 1912 looks the worst then any of them what can i do to help take care of them - tina darty
Hi Tina -- Storing collectible coins is an important subject. If coins are left loose in a damp environment they get ruined when impurities in the air eat away surface metal. Coin dealers have various products to help. They are inexpensive solutions to an important problem. For your V nickels I'd recommend cardboard '2x2s' or hard plastic 'flips.' The best idea is to find a coin shop in your area and talk to the proprietor. Otherwise you can go to, for instance, Stanton Books and click the tab that says 'Coin Tubes and Holders.' - CoinQuest (Paul)

The 'V' side of my 18XX v nickel only has brownish outlines for the engravings and the rest is completely flat. Most of the heads side is worn away but the outlines (not details) of the head are intact. Is this a 'uniface' or just a 'AG-3' grade coin? If it is a uniface, what is its value?? - mike gamble
It's sadly impossible to assign a numismatic grade to a coin from a description, but I would dare make the guess that you could have a well circulated coin that was smoothed on one side to make a love token. Seemingly it was never finished. We can only guess why. Perhaps a suitable tool for engraving was never acquired, or maybe the romance ended before the token could be finished. This image shows what such a token can look like when it's finished. Note how the 'V' side is also flat, showing no rim. - CoinQuest (Paul)





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