Coin Specifications

Category: Liberty Head Five Cents (1883-1913)
Mint: San Francisco
Mintage: 238,000
Obverse Designer: Charles E. Barber
Reverse Designer: Charles E. Barber
Composition: Copper-Nickel
Weight: 5.0000g
Diameter: 21.2mm
Edge: Plain
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1912 S 5C MS obverse 1912 S 5C MS reverse


  
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Description & Analysis

This is the only S-Mint Liberty Head Nickel and a key date in the series. It has by far the smallest mintage, but because these coins were still circulating when coin boards became popular in the 1930s, worn examples have survived in disproportionate numbers. The higher-mintage 1885 and 1886 nickels are thus more rare across most grades.

The entire production was struck in four days---December 24 and 26-28. On that last date, the first 1912 S nickel coined was used to pay the first fare on San Francisco's new Municipal Railway. The celebrated passenger was Mayor James Rolph, and the coin was presented to the city treasurer for preservation, but it disappeared from the treasurer's office many years ago.

Gems are rare for this issue, the number shown being perhaps higher than normal due to multiple submissions of the same coin. This is a frequent occurrence with key dates. The typical 1912 S nickel is softly struck in the hair above Liberty's forehead and at the lower left of the wreath. A fully struck example may not exist, as the obverse weakness seems to have been caused by an incomplete transfer from the hub.

GRADE SUMMARY

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Price Guide

Last Updated: 1/23/2017

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

1912 S 5C MS
  GVGFVFXF505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ 145 190 260 530 1075 1350 1450 1575 1750 1800 1850 2000 2200 2550 3250 8250 - - - -
$ 1150 - - - - - - 2100 2350 2750 3350 22500 - -

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Census

 
NGC GRADE SUMMARY

Total Graded: 1431
Low Grade: PrAg
Average Grade: 45
High Grade: 66


Upcoming Auctions

A random selection of NGC coins is shown below.

Images
Date
Grade
Auction House
Sale / Lot
11/4/2017 MS 65   Heritage Auctions 2017 November 2 - 4 US Coins Signature Auction - Dallas Session(1), 1261/Lot# 16264


Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Images
Date
Service
Grade
Auction House
Sale / Lot
Price
5/30/2010 PCGS AU 50   Bonhams Coins, Medals, and Banknotes, 18301/Lot# 1246 $1,170.00
9/30/2012 PCGS F 12   Teletrade Auction 3355, 3355/Lot# 1390 $184.00
7/27/2013 NGC MS 60   Stack's Bowers The August 2013 Chicago ANA World's Fair of Money , 192/Lot# 1662 $1,116.25
1/26/2014 NGC G 6   Goldberg January 26-28, 2014 January Pre-Long Beach Sale 17.5% BP, 78/Lot# 1014 $129.00
2/16/2014 PCGS VG 8   David Lawrence Rare Coins Internet Auction # 791, 800/Lot# 320 $145.00
6/29/2014 NGC VG 8   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 06/29/2014, 187/Lot# 202424 $150.00
7/13/2014 NGC G 6   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(2), 131429/Lot# 26330 $135.13
4/22/2015 PCGS MS 66   Heritage Auctions 2015 April 22 - 26 CSNS US Coins Signature Auction - Chicago Session(4), 1219/Lot# 4951 $8,812.50
6/4/2017 PCGS VG 8   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(1), 131724/Lot# 23068 $104.00


NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1912 5C MS S
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base46348959774511791776182120092087217923022335236824642585278131264756649595901104912665
47252564689013781791188420352118222023132346240025042650289636695336752710076115880
00000018842035211822202313234624002504265028963669533675271007600
00000019462061214822612324235724322545271630114213591585581056300
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: MS 66
Points: 5336
Owner: NMK8104
 
Grade: MS 65
Points: 3126
Owner: erwindoc
 
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