Coin Specifications

Category: Nickel Three Cents (1865-1889)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 604,000
Obverse Designer: James B. Longacre
Reverse Designer: James B. Longacre
Composition: Copper-Nickel
Weight: 1.9400g
Diameter: 17.9mm
Edge: Plain
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1871 3CN MS obverse 1871 3CN MS reverse
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Description & Analysis

Production of this coin plunged in 1871, due to Congressional action that permitted the Treasury to reissue those minor coins turned in for redemption that were considered still fit for circulation. This meant that only the coins lost, mutilated or excessively worn needed to be replaced with newly struck ones.

The 1871 three-cent piece is thus more scarce than earlier issues, though catalog prices don't necessarily reflect this fact. The relatively high availability of proof examples for all later dates in this series has had the effect of capping prices for currency pieces.

The only variety reported for 1871 is a fairly distinct doubled-die obverse affecting the entire legend.

GRADE SUMMARY

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Price Guide

Last Updated: 5/31/2019

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

1871 3CN MS
  GVGFVFXF505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ 18.30 23.40 31.00 46.50 51.00 100.00 100.00 110 115 150 185 210 235 390 920 1700 13000 - - -
$ 52.00 - - - 115 - - 210 255 425 1030 3250 - -

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Census

 
NGC GRADE SUMMARY

Total Graded: 258
Low Grade: G
Average Grade: 62
High Grade: 67

The chart showing G series, VG series, F series, VF series, 40 series, 45 series, 50 series, 53 series, 55 series, 58 series, 60 series, 61 series, 62 series, 63 series, 64 series, 65 series, 66 series, 67 series.
NGC CENSUS DETAIL Last Updated: 9/10/2019 1871 3CN MS
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970Total
Base-125142343618-527318440103---258
-----------------------
---------------2-1----3
-----------------------
Total-125142343618-527318640113---261
 -0 %1 %2 %5 %1 %1 %2 %1 %2 %7 %-2 %10 %12 %33 %15 %4 %1 %--- 

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Images
Date
Service
Grade
Auction House
Sale / Lot
Price
5/31/2004 PCGS MS 64   Goldberg May 31 - June 2, 2004 Pre-Long Beach Coin and Currency Auction, 25/Lot# 433 $920.00
4/25/2005 NGC MS 64   David Lawrence Rare Coins Richmond Sale, Internet-Only Auction, 40/Lot# 223 $193.20
1/14/2013 NGC MS 65   Teletrade Auction 3413, 3413/Lot# 1326 $550.00
5/5/2013 PCGS MS 63   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 05/05/2013, 73/Lot# 113163 $288.77
4/14/2014 PCGS MS 63   Stack's Bowers iAuction 3477, 6026/Lot# 20086 $176.25
2/26/2015 PCGS MS 66   Heritage Auctions 2015 February 26 - March 1 PNG Dallas Invitational US Coins Signature Auction - Dallas Session(2), 1218/Lot# 3463 $2,350.00
3/5/2017 PCGS MS 64   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(1), 131711/Lot# 23114 $376.00
4/3/2018 PCGS MS 64   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(1), 131815/Lot# 23218 $336.00


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