If you were to reach into your pocket right now, there’s a good chance you might pull out a Jefferson Nickel. Since replacing the Buffalo Nickel in 1938, these five-cent pieces have been a key component of U.S. coinage. The U.S. Mint still makes these popular coins today. Although a nickel doesn’t strike the average person as a coin that might be collectable, some Jefferson Nickels can have significant value to collectors.
For a coin collector to bother with such a coin, however, the coin will likely have to be in near-mint condition and very well preserved. These coins are the most appealing to look at and are often worth the most money.
For any coin that was minted multiple decades ago, you really have to closely look at the coin’s condition. While any coin can have potential collectable value, coin collectors will most often seek out and pay for coins that are in excellent condition. Finding these coins can be difficult, however, given the amount of time that has passed since they were minted.
When you are looking at a coin, you want to try to determine how the coin might be graded by a professional coin grading company. You can use the guide below to see what a Jefferson Nickel in various conditions and grades might look like.
Uncirculated: Coins in uncirculated condition are generally the target of serious coin collectors. Because these coins have not been used in circulation, they have retained their original condition and do not have any damage or wear. In fact, these coins will appear to be brand new and freshly struck and you wouldn’t be able to tell their age just by looking at them.
Extremely Fine: Coin collectors will also go after coins that are said to be in extremely fine condition. These coins are in great overall shape, although they may have some very minor imperfections. To achieve a grade of extremely fine, however, any imperfections must be very minimal and may only be seen under a very close examination.
Fine: Coins in fine condition have been circulated for some time. These coins will exhibit the usual signs of circulation such as scratches, damage or discoloration. Any damage on these coins is not enough, however, to affect the integrity of the coin’s images or details.
Good: Most of the Jefferson Nickels that are exchanged today would be assigned a grade of good. These coins have seen heavy circulation for many years, and have serious signs of use-related wear and tear including scratches, dents or discoloration. Coin collectors tend to avoid coins in this condition instead looking for similar coins in superior physical shape.
When trying to price a coin, you have to consider both the coin type and the coin’s condition. Many Jefferson Nickels, for example, were minted in different types for different mint years. Mint year 1963, for example, saw three different types of this coin produced. In addition to the coin type, you will also need to accurately assess the coin’s condition. Condition is very important for coin collectors, and coins in great condition can fetch much higher premiums than similar coins in a lesser condition. Use the grid below to get an idea of what you might expect to pay for a 1963 Jefferson Nickel according to its condition and type.
1963 Jefferson Nickel
|1963 Jefferson Nickel
|1963 Jefferson Nickel (D)
|Source: Red Book