Coin Specifications

Category: Seated Liberty Dimes (1837-1891)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 14,000
Catalog: KM-A92
Obverse Designer: James B. Longacre
Reverse Designer: James B. Longacre
Composition: Silver
Fineness: 0.9000
Weight: 2.50 Grams
ASW: 0.0723oz
Melt Value: $1.06 (9/4/2015)
Diameter: 17.9mm
Edge: Reeded
Numismatic specification data provided by Krause Publications NumisMaster.
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1879 10C MS obverse 1879 10C MS reverse

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Description & Analysis

The total lack of demand for additional dimes in circulation left the U. S. Mint with a quandary. Should it coin proofs alone and risk having these become instant rarities that were exploited in the secondary market, or should it produce just enough currency strikes to satisfy collector demand? Director Horatio Burchard opted for a modest mintage of non-proofs so that collectors could obtain dimes of the current year at face value. This practice remained in effect for dimes through 1881, after which time normal mintages resumed.

A mintage of 14,000 pieces would normally result in a rare issue, but a substantial percentage of this mintage was picked off by speculators immediately. Mint State pieces, even gems, are disproportionately common in relation to circulated examples, which are indeed rare. This explains the narrow value range across all grades below MS 66.

A couple of repunched date varieties are known for 1879 dimes, but these are interest primarily to specialists.


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Price Guide

Last Updated: 7/22/2015

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

1879 10C MS
Base $ 250 325 375 450 475 500 525 550 575 625 650 675 850 1175 1750 4750 13500 - -
$ - - - - - - - 750 - - - - -

The World Coin Price Guide is independently compiled by Krause Publications’ NumisMaster. NGC makes this information available to its website visitors as a free service, but in no way does the information provided represent NGC’s official opinion or policy. For example, varieties listed in the World Coin Price Guide may not necessarily be recognized by NGC. Please contact NGC Customer Service with any questions.

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Total Graded: 183
Low Grade: G
Average Grade: 64
High Grade: 68

Upcoming Auctions

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Auction House
Sale / Lot
11/23/1998 NGC MS 66   Teletrade Auction 1107, 1107/Lot# 1275 $1,296.00
9/21/2009 NGC MS 64   Prooflike David Lawrence Rare Coins Monday - Internet Auction # 412, 418/Lot# 7373 $552.00
1/3/2011 NGC MS 67   Stack's Bowers The January 2011 Tampa Bay Rarities Sale, 70/Lot# 400 $2,255.15
7/7/2011 NGC Details AU Details  Heritage Auctions 2011 July Orlando Summer FUN Signature US Coin Auction Session(4), 1157/Lot# 7870 $460.00
1/29/2012 PCGS MS 67   Goldberg January 29 - February 1, 2012 The Pre-Long Beach Auction, 67/Lot# 2426 $2,760.00
7/12/2012 PCGS MS 65   Heritage Auctions 2012 July 12-15 US Coin Summer FUN Signature Auction - Orlando Session(1), 1172/Lot# 3418 $920.00
10/18/2012 NGC MS 66   Heritage Auctions 2012 October 18-21 ANA US Coins Signature Auction - Dallas Session(2), 1175/Lot# 3929 $2,232.50
10/8/2014 PCGS MS 64   Heritage Auctions 2014 October 8 - 13 PNG New York Invitational US Coins Signature Auction - New York Session(5), 1210/Lot# 7617 $646.25

NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1879 10C MS
1879 10C MS Prooflike
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: MS 67
Points: 4295
Owner: #
Grade: MS 67
Points: 3525
Owner: yuylsworld
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