Coin Specifications

Category: Shield Five Cents (1866-1883)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 2,350
Catalog: KM-97
Obverse Designer: James B. Longacre
Reverse Designer: James B. Longacre
Composition: Copper-Nickel
Weight: 5.00 Grams
Diameter: 20.5mm
Edge: Plain
Numismatic specification data provided by Krause Publications NumisMaster.
Link to this coin

1878 5C PF obverse 1878 5C PF reverse


  
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VarietyPlus®

There are no varieties for this coin.

Description & Analysis

1878 is the first year for which total mintage figures combining both the silver and minor proof sets were kept for the minor coins. Thus, we may be reasonably certain that there were 2,350 proof 1878 nickels made.

As may be seen from the photos, this issue looks more like a premium currency strike than a true proof. This date typically is found quite well struck, but with satiny fields in place of truely reflective ones. Combined with edges that are slightly beveled rather than sharply squared, such coins could be mistaken for MS were it not for the fact that the Mint struck only proofs this year. Gems are fairly common, cameo examples also existing in sufficient numbers to be collectable.

The second 8 is repunched east of the first impression, leading to false reports of an overdate. The underlying figure faded a bit with repeated use of the die and, most likely, subsequent repolishing.

GRADE SUMMARY

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Price Guide

Last Updated: 6/11/2013

Click on a price to see historical prices, comparison charts and trends.

1878 5C PF
  GVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ 660 750 870 960 1020 1020 1080 1110 1140 1260 1380 1530 1590 1680 1880 1970 2150 2860 - - -
$ 1120 1190 1220 1250 1390 1520 1680 1750 1850 2070 2170 2370 3100 -
NGC Price and Value Guides Disclaimer

Census

 
NGC GRADE SUMMARY

Total Graded: 590
Low Grade: G
Average Grade: 64
High Grade: 67


Upcoming Auctions


Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Images
Date
Service
Grade
Auction House
Sale / Lot
Price
7/1/2003 PCGS PF 65   Heritage Auctions Exclusively Internet Auction #23072, 23072/Lot# 11276 $632.50
1/3/2005 PCGS PF 66   Teletrade Auction 1983, 1983/Lot# 1124 $1,540.00
1/3/2006 PCGS PF 67   Heritage Auctions 2006 January Orlando, FL (FUN) Signature Auction #394, 394/Lot# 1287 $2,300.00
2/11/2007 NGC PF 66   Cameo Goldberg February 11-14, 2007 Pre-Long Beach Coin and Currency Auction, 39/Lot# 1116 $2,760.00
9/6/2009 PCGS PF 65   Goldberg September 6-8, 2009 Pre-Long Beach Coin and Currency Auction, 54/Lot# 2491 $1,610.00
10/17/2012 NGC PF 64   Stack's Bowers The November 2012 Baltimore Auction - US and World Lots - Live and Internet Only Sessions, 144/Lot# 1110 $1,386.90
4/21/2013 PCGS PF 66   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 04/21/2013, 71/Lot# 111252 $2,035.00
3/30/2014 PCGS PF 64   David Lawrence Rare Coins Internet Auction # 797, 806/Lot# 35 $1,600.00


NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1878 5C PF
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base22729537246657770978786191695110021036103910451051106612711609261443611349824137
2493204035036217358118799279681013103710411047105611341383194431967406170440
000000811879927968101310371041104710561134138319443196740600
0000008368979399851024103810431049106112021496227937781045200
1878 5C PF Cameo
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base2783544455516788269139961057109711531190119312001345136314501821291748021538027470
3033844805937278559401016107011151165119111951248135113921573218635458328194100
000000940101610701115116511911195124813511392157321863545832800
0000009681036108311341177119211971296135714211697255141731185400
1878 5C PF Ultra Cameo
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base4095106297689301115122513271403145215231568157215801589160917532179342255271817632394
442549675822991115112591352141914751538156915741583159516571895259341239743229150
0000001259135214191475153815691574158315951657189525934123974300
00000012931377143514991553157015771586160217052037300748251395900
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: PF 67 CA
Points: 2917
Owner: Cameolot
 
Grade: PF 67 CA
Points: 2917
Owner: SLUGGO
 
View the Registry Image Gallery

Related Articles

Counterfeit Detection: The Kissing Thief

6/8/2010  — This proof 1878 Shield Nickel looks pretty at first glance, but a more careful evaluation reveals that it’s a fake.
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