Old Coins You Might Have… & What They’re Worth



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old-coins-photo-by-aresauburn.jpg It’s really amazing how many old coins are floating around out there.

At least a few times each week, I’ll be asked how much an old penny is worth, values for old quarters, and prices for old silver coins.

There are tons of old coins out there just waiting to be found in estates, buried in coffee cans, and hiding out in boxes and drawers.

Let’s check out some old coins you may have and see how much they’re worth.

Get out your magnifying glass… maybe you have some of these old coins sitting in your home!

 

Old Coins You’re Probably Curious About

OK, so you are trying to figure out which old coins you need to be looking for because, after all, it’s always fun to find out how much your old coins are worth!

Of course, it’s impossible to list all the old coins in just one single article.

Instead, I’ve chosen some of the most popular and most-commonly encountered types of old coins that folks tend to ask about.

Let’s find out more…

 

Old Pennies

OK, there are tons of old pennies out there, and many people are finding them in penny rolls, old chests, and chests of drawers hidden away in the attic. Though I’m including old pennies as a group here, I’m going to break down values for a few of the old pennies most people are curious about:

 

Buffalo Nickels

While stories of people finding Buffalo nickels in pocket change have become rare, there are still millions of these coins in collections and hoards. Most are common.

 

Mercury Dimes

This coin, often mistaken as showing the Roman god Mercury, has a portrait of Miss Liberty wearing a winged cap. This popular piece virtually disappeared from circulation decades ago.

Most dates in the Mercury dime series are common and, in worn grades, are usually worth only a small markup over their base silver value.

Mercury dimes (most dates in typical worn grades) $2 to $5

 

Roosevelt Dimes

Plain and simple, there are very few Roosevelt dimes you’re going to find in pocket change worth anything more than face value.

The most readily found Roosevelt dimes worth more than face value are those made before 1965. These have a 90 percent silver composition and are often found in rolls and hoards.

Silver Roosevelt dime (made before 1965 in worn grades) $1 to $2

 

Washington Quarters & 50 States Quarters

I’m putting both regular Washington quarters and the 50 States quarters into the same group here. First things first, unless your 50 States quarter is a proof example or has an error, it’s not worth anything more than a quarter, especially if it’s worn. Period!

The same goes for most Washington quarters made since 1965. Including Bicentennial quarters. Unless it’s a proof specimen, has an error, or is an uncirculated coin, nearly every Washington quarter you find in your spare change is worth only a quarter.

The only exception to this are 1982 and 1983 quarters, which were not saved when first released and, in lightly worn grades, are worth $1 to $5.

All Washington quarters made before 1965 contain silver and are worth at least their weight in silver.

Silver Washington quarter (most dates, typical wear) $3 to $5

 

Franklin Half Dollars

These nice old silver half dollars that feature the portrait of a man who invented hundreds of items and helped organize the beginnings of our nation have long been a popular coin series for coin collectors.

Most Franklin half dollar dates aren’t very expensive and it takes just 35 coins to complete a set.

Franklin half dollars (most dates, typical wear) $7 to $10

 

Kennedy Half Dollars

While Franklin half dollars are made of silver, most Kennedy half dollars aren’t. In fact, none made for circulation since 1971 contains even a speck of silver. Unless your Kennedy half dollar has an ‘S’ mintmark, is a proof example, or has an error, if it’s made since 1971, it’s worth only 50 cents. That includes any ‘P’ or ‘D’ Bicentennial half dollars you might have.

  • Kennedy half dollar (1964) $7 to $10
  • Kennedy half dollar (1965 to 1970) $3 to $5

 

Silver Dollars

United States silver dollars date back to 1794. Easily said, any that you have from the 1790s to the early 1800s (that are real) are worth around $800 to 1,000 and up.

Authentic silver dollars made from the 1840s through the 1870s are worth at least $100 and up in worn grades.

Chances are, you have silver dollars made since 1878. If you have one, it likely has either a portrait of a lady with curly hair or what the design looks to be the head of the Statue of Liberty.

These are Morgan and Peace dollars, respectively. Though old, most dates of these coins are actually very common and worth a little more than their silver value.

Right now, a common date Morgan or Peace dollar is worth around $20 and up.

Eisenhower dollar coins are mostly made of copper-nickel clad and are generally worth only face value (some coin dealers now pay $1.10 to $1.25 for worn copper-nickel Eisenhower dollars), unless it’s a proof example or silver version (both have an ‘S’ mint mark).

Virtually all Susan B. Anthony, Sacagawea, and Presidential dollar coins are worth only $1.

 

Pre-1934 Gold Coins

Many people come into possession of old gold coins from before 1934. These legal tender gold coins are worth much more than their face values.

In fact, any and all gold coins are literally worth their weight in gold. Because gold coin values vary based on their denomination and when they were made, you should check out a website like Coinflation, which helps you determine the value of your gold coins based on the current spot price of the valuable metal.

Joshua

I'm the Coin Editor here at TheFunTimesGuide. My love for coins began when I was 11 years old. I primarily collect and study U.S. coins produced during the 20th century. I'm a member of the American Numismatic Association (ANA) and the Numismatic Literary Guild (NLG) and have won multiple awards from the NLG for my work as a coin journalist. I'm also the editor at the Florida United Numismatists Club (FUN Topics magazine), and author of Images of America: The United States Mint in Philadelphia (a book that explores the colorful history of the Philadelphia Mint). I've contributed hundreds of articles for various coin publications including COINage, The Numismatist, Numismatic News, Coin Dealer Newsletter, Coin Values, and CoinWeek. I've authored nearly 1,000 articles here at The Fun Times Guide to Coins (many of them with over 50K shares), and I welcome your coin questions in the comments below!

52 thoughts on “Old Coins You Might Have… & What They’re Worth

    1. David,

      Coins stamped with the same image really can’t happen with today’s modern minting techniques, and are mainly fantasy pieces made for novelty.

    1. In general, dateless Standing Liberty quarters are worth around $10. Almost all dateless Standing Liberty quarters were made before 1925, when the U.S. Mint recessed the date so the wear would stop eroding away the numerals.

    1. Hi, Beck —

      Sure thing. The “V” nickel, or Liberty nickel as it is widely known, was minted from 1883 through 1912, with 5 specimens struck in 1913. Most well-worn, common-date specimens of this coin are worth $1 to $3, though some dates, like the 1885, are worth hundreds of dollars.

      Here’s some more info on Liberty nickels: http://coins.thefuntimesguide.com/liberty_head_nickels/

  1. hi can you help me to find how much my 1953 one shilling is worth in pounds. oh and can you help me to find how much my 1935 one penny georgivs V is worth in pounds 🙂

    1. Hi, Michaela —

      As you may know, old British currency won’t convert in circulation anymore due to decimalisation in 1971. However, the collectible value of your coins is the following:

      1935 One Penny – 65p
      1953 One Shilling – 75p

      The values above are assuming the coins are in worn condition. Remember, also, the prices/values will vary based on the coin dealer.

      Best,
      Josh

  2. Hi,england calling,we have in very good condition 3 silver dollars.1 dated
    1799 and 1.dated 1921.also a trade dollar dated 1879.a worn half dollar
    dated 1945.many thanks.robin marks.

    1. Hi, Robin —

      Would you please attach photos of your coins so I may evaluate as to authenticity and condition-basis on value?

      Thank you,
      Josh

  3. Good morning;unfortunately I will have to wait until somebody shows me how to put photo’s on the net.1799.Lady with long flowing hair 15 stars.reverse spread eagle on a shield 13stars.Trade dollar 1879.13 stars with lady seated with flowers in her right hand.
    reverse full eagle trade dollar.1921 with 13 stars head only facing to the left,reverse full eagle surrounded by olive branches.Worn half dollar 1945.Many thanks.robin.

    1. Hello, sir —

      As much as I would love to assist you with this, I am not an expert in ancient coins and would not want to misinform you on matters of value, authenticity, or other relevant details. I do invite any others reading this post to chime in if they have any expertise in the ancient types posted here, though.

      Best,
      Josh

  4. have you ever heard of a nipple back error ? I have a 2005 d dime with this thing coming off the back…

    1. Hi, Britt —

      I’m not aware of that particular error by name, but perhaps if you don’t mind submitting a photo I can take a look and see if I can tell you what’s going on with your coin!

      Thank you,
      Josh

        1. Hi, Britt —

          This is a post-mint addition. A weird dime find indeed!

          Best,
          Josh

  5. Hey I have a question about Canadian money. I just got one from the 1800s and I have not a clue it’s rarity or worth.

  6. what can you tell me about this 1944 penny? The M in America is broken on each side https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/2f0b0fd4df7061c936416137151561923803696cc839e44f8523c154f9ba4033.png in the middle.

    1. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/6199d38efed76243debd21592c439cbe1e764e7e2d7c2167ec16825e7c9b647f.jpg

    2. Hi, Steven —

      This looks like a case of post-mint damage; the coin is still worth 3 to 5 cents.

      Best,
      Josh

  7. anything good about this coin?
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/a58daa33346eb94d03d65a5865b69bf5424b5e0abd17feee5b32f38d2b0c6d29.jpg
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/9ef6ccf6ccf333f99d0df4e21d521a21428126f15ece3927cde415a506222e23.jpg

    1. Hi, Steven —

      There’s a nick at the end of Lincoln’s nose and corrosion on the reverse. It’s still worth keeping though. The value of this coin is 5 to 10 cents.

      Thank you for your question and photo!
      Josh

  8. Hi could you help me check the authenticity of this trade dollar 1876 coin? https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/1d92911474d4691e5634d78ea6f7d042e9ba6eb1ade62b9aa70fe19c7cef525a.jpg

    1. Hi, Carol —

      The coin would need to be weighed, inspected on both sides, and go through a series of diagnostic tests to confirm whether or not it’s authentic. Beware that most Trade dollars that folks come across are counterfeit — many of them quite deceptive. It’s therefore great that you’re aware to ask whether or not yours is the real McCoy.

      By the way, a real Trade dollar weighs 27.22 grams — if you can get this coin on a scale that measures grams by the hundredth of a gram, we can begin really determining whether or not this coin is real.

      Please let me know if you’re able to upload a photo of the coin’s reverse (“tail’s side”) AND can get a weight on the coin.

      Thank you and goodl luck!
      Josh

      1. Hi, the coin weighs approximately 27.1ghttps://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/4b381ba55f0619db7b19cdc0e33e128284a1cce16f5a33906d446da597cc5236.jpg

        1. Hi, Carol —

          This is great news. The next step is to compare details in the design and look for how similar it is. I’ve attached a photo of the obverse and reverse of a known authentic coin here. Please let me know what you think based on your own in-hand inspection.

          Best,
          Josh

          https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/6841dee0e8cbfc4c518a022e8e89ea9964d84fbc7834e2d3c2a86ab5b9e1603d.jpg

          1. Both sides of my coin looks quite similar to the picture you have sent, may I ask the approximate price of the coin if I want to sell it?

          2. Hello, Carol —

            Coin prices would vary based on the precise grade and rather or not all diagnostics on the coin check out after an in-hand numismatic evaluation. However, the values of a moderately worn 1876 Trade dollar with heavy toning could be anywhere from $150 to $200. Coin prices aren’t really fixed, and the value I list are only market-influenced suggestions. You might receive more or less based on present demand and whatever buyers are willing to pay.

            Good luck,
            Josh

  9. I have a few coins and have been told there of value. Coins range from 1800s to 1943. What’s the best
    way to investigate.

    1. Hi, D —

      I’ll need to know not just the specific dates but also the denominations and their nation of origin to really be of any help concerning the value of these coins, please.

      In the meantime, you might want to check this link out for more info on values: https://coins.thefuntimesguide.com/us-coins/

      Thank you for your question,
      Josh

  10. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/e608c543487cf789fc56fb74a428f1c64b6f11a3132f0e87553a1af9e3d36920.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/564b509cd46f7b67d90d135185d5e353020b063c44ba5baf2d1751f31f167d02.jpg

    Can anyone tell me a value of this coin?

    1. Hello, Dawn!

      This is a fantastic-looking 1892-CC Morgan dollar. As you may know, CC-mint Morgan dollars (those struck at the Carson City, Nevada, Mint) are relatively scarce, and such is the case with your dollar coin. Your piece seems to appear authentic based on the images, though with any scarce coin I always recommend an in-hand inspection and/or possible certification by a 3rd-party coin authentication firm to verify.

      Assuming your coin is authentic, it appears to grade around Very Fine-20 and should be worth about $225 to $250.

      Here’s more info on Morgan silver dollars: https://coins.thefuntimesguide.com/morgan_silver_dollars/
      And info on 3rd-party certification companies, if you’re interested: https://coins.thefuntimesguide.com/slabbed_coins/

      Thank you for your question and images… nice coin!

      Best,
      Josh

      1. Thank you so much for the info, it was actually given to me by my step dad. And you are welcomed I love reading this little blog!!

        1. Thank you for your kind feedback, Dawn! What a wonderful gift your step dad gave you.

          All the best,
          Josh

  11. good morning josh i have a 1873 quarter dollar i just wanted to know the value of it https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/72aae3bd2aaa62d85f42eb1189e1fbd45c30bb2d015260d62190f4eb5ef35f7e.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/0fe50f0a929cc75d82ee09574625f866829b3f16b429a6edb964d31a90a6035f.jpg

    1. Hello, Maura —

      Wow, there’s a classic coin! I’m trying to see what letter that mintmark is under the eagle. It looks like an “S,” no? Or is it by chance “CC”?

      If it’s an 1873-S (arrows at date), it’s worth about $20 to $30 in this condition. An 1873-CC (with arrows) quarter is worth a whopping $3,500 to $5,000 in this condition. So, by all means, if you can provide more details on the mintmark I can better assist in explaining what this coin’s value might be.

      Best,
      Josh

  12. hello!! my name is paul, but my friends call me Paulie! i have a 1922 morgan, i mean i’m assuming its a morgan! LOL!! on both sides of the coin are the two identical females, one side is immaculate, with the exception of the word “COPY” located just above the words “in god we” just in front the face.. The other side is marred with gouges or slits ranging from an 1/8 of an inch to just over a 1/2 an inch. the eyes are gouged with what looks like a obvious “X” !! have you had any other such coins shown or viewed by you or others in your field??

    1. Hi, Paul — or Paulie! I would need a photo to confirm the identity, but it sounds like you’re describing a replica piece. These are usually worth only the value of the metal, though some folks spend a few bucks on buying such coins (a 1922 “Morgan dollar” is a fantasy coin — one that doesn’t really exist) for their exonumia collections. Here’s more info on exonumia: https://coins.thefuntimesguide.com/tokens/

      If you still want to send a photo or two of the coin (both sides, please!) I’d be glad to provide further comment on this piece.

      Best wishes,
      Josh

  13. Hi Joshua! My boss asked I look into if these coins have any value. As I’m not sure what they even are, after stumbling across your pages I figured I might as well ask! Can you take a look and let me know?

    Thanks!
    Heidi https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/97e1f5af2b0bcea5d80d5a7ea9a51b2ee0099e0d29f625ab1e6549a31fb43ae7.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/a4f25625096f1858f46d2ab97f29b66e98ba799b95cffb5f95efdd74f5c2bad5.jpg

    1. Hello, Heidi!

      You and your boss have two very popular US dollar coins from the 1970s. The large one is an Eisenhower dollar, and they were made from 1971 through 1978. In 1975 and 1976, they were dual-dated 1776-1976 on the head’s side (known as the “obverse”) to mark the nation’s bicentennial and have a special design on the tail’s end (“reverse”) incorporating the Moon and Liberty Bell.

      The smaller dollar coin depicts Susan B. Anthony on the obverse and the Apollo 11 insignia on the reverse. Interestingly, the Eisenhower dollar also normally carries the Apollo 11 design on the reverse, but the one you photographed has the special bicentennial design. Susan B. Anthony dollars were minted from 1979 to 1981 and again in 1999.

      Of course, the big question probably is what are they worth? Unfortunately, neither contains any precious metal (they’re made from a copper-nickel clad composition), so they don’t have any significant metal value. And so many millions of these coins were minted that, unless they’re in the best of mint condition, they’re generally not worth more than face value. Looking at these two coins, the most these would be worth is about $1.10 for the Eisenhower dollar and $1.05 apiece for the Susan B. Anthony dollars.

      I wish I had better news for you, but tell your boss to give you a raise for popping by here and asking some great questions!

      Cheers,
      Josh

  14. 1965 dime, could you tell me about this dime,the one one left.
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/504daaead3c59821711986459541a3bea0564912f10672dea38dba20d9f7d92a.jpg

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