Coin Specifications

Category: Three Dollar Gold (1854-1889)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 5,000
Catalog: KM-84
Obverse Designer: James B. Longacre
Reverse Designer: James B. Longacre
Composition: Gold
Fineness: 0.9000
Weight: 5.0150g
AGW: 0.1451oz
Melt Value: $163.05 (9/5/2015)
Diameter: 20.5mm
Edge: Reeded
Numismatic specification data provided by Krause Publications NumisMaster.
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1888 $3 MS obverse 1888 $3 MS reverse

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There are no NGC varieties for this coin.

Description & Analysis

The 1888 is one of many issues within the three dollar series with enticingly low mintages. Only 5,000 pieces were struck, which, if put into perspective, is only 5% of the mintage of the 1893-S dollar. It is true that the 1888 circulated little, since survivors are more often found in Mint State than in worn condition. It is also true that the majority of the issue has likely been melted, since the combined NGC and PCGS population is less than 1,000 pieces, which undoubtedly includes a large number of resubmissions over the past twenty years. The MS62 to MS64 grades account for a sizeable portion of Uncirculated 1888 examples. Gems are scarce, and Premium Gems are rare. Speculators often gravitate toward the 1888 because of its low mintage, which is only about 6% of the 1878 type coin. Yet the 1888 trades for only a small premium above type prices. Shrewd gold type collectors often select the 1888, since it provides greater value than the 'common' 1878.

Description and Analysis courtesy of Heritage Auctions and may not be republished without written permission.


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Price Guide

Last Updated: 3/26/2015

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

1888 $3 MS
Base $ 400 515 580 910 1230 1800 2000 2175 3100 4000 4500 5400 7800 15250 26500 85000 - - -
$ 1350 - - 2400 3400 - - - 9000 - 43000 - -

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: 500
Low Grade: F
Average Grade: 61
High Grade: 66

Upcoming Auctions

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Auction House
Sale / Lot
7/24/2000 PCGS AU 50   Teletrade Auction 1337, 1337/Lot# 1817 $1,055.00
8/8/2007 PCGS MS 63   Heritage Auctions 2007 Milwaukee, WI (ANA) Signature Coin Auction #444, 444/Lot# 3021 $8,625.00
8/13/2007 NGC MS 63   David Lawrence Rare Coins Monday - Internet Auction # 168, 173/Lot# 1935 $8,761.85
12/8/2010 PCGS Genuine Genuine   Bonhams Coins and Banknotes, 18404/Lot# 2323 $1,638.00
5/29/2011 NGC MS 65   Goldberg May 29 - June 1, 2011 The Pre-Long Beach Auction of US, World Coins and Currency, 63/Lot# 1484 $14,375.00
2/28/2012 NGC AU 58   Stack's Bowers The March 2012 Baltimore Auction, 135/Lot# 7467 $2,587.50
7/8/2012 PCGS Genuine Genuine   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 07/08/2012, 30/Lot# 54952 $550.00
11/29/2012 PCGS MS 66   Heritage Auctions 2012 November 29 - December 2 US Coin Signature Auction - Houston Session(3), 1177/Lot# 4904 $28,200.00
3/21/2014 PCGS MS 63   Heritage Auctions 2014 March 21 & 23 US Coins Signature Auction - San Francisco Session(2), 1198/Lot# 10601 $4,553.13
8/5/2014 PCGS MS 64   Heritage Auctions 2014 August 5, 7 & 9 ANA US Coins Signature Auction - Chicago Session(2), 1208/Lot# 3845 $7,050.00

NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1888 $3 MS
1888 $3 MS Prooflike
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: MS 62
Points: 2699
Owner: Whidbey Island Collection
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