Coin Specifications

Category: Shield Five Cents (1866-1883)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 600
Obverse Designer: James B. Longacre
Reverse Designer: James B. Longacre
Composition: Copper-Nickel
Weight: 5.0000g
Diameter: 20.5mm
Edge: Plain
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1866 RAYS 5C PF obverse 1866 RAYS 5C PF reverse
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Description & Analysis

Coining of the nickel five-cent piece did not begin until June 11, 1866, well after most collectors had purchased their silver proof sets for the year. Walter Breen's figure of 125 proof nickels was derived from the number of silver sets sold after that time, these including the minor coins, as well. How many proof nickels were sold as part of the minor proof sets is uncertain, but estimates range from 600-1200, and it's also possible that restrikes were made a few years later for new collectors.

The proofs of this date are generally well struck, though a few will show slight weakness at the right side of the chief, the upper portion of the shield in which horizontal lines represent the color blue. This is in contrast to the currency pieces, which are almost always poorly defined.

There seem to be enough proof 1866 nickels to satisfy the demand, though gems are scarce. So, too, are Cameo examples, while Ultra Cameo specimens are ultra rare.

This is the only issue in the series to have a tiny centering dot on the reverse. This die was evidently unique to 1866 proofs and some pattern coins.

GRADE SUMMARY

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Price Guide

Last Updated: 3/12/2020

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

1866 RAYS 5C PF
  GVGFVFXF505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ - - - - - - - - - 1250 1400 1500 1900 2400 2750 4150 14450 - - -
$ - - - - - - - - - 2550 3600 6000 - -
1866 RAYS 5C PF CA
  GVGFVFXF505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ - - - - - - - - - - - - 2000 2675 3250 4250 15000 - - -
1866 RAYS 5C PF UC
  GVGFVFXF505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 7000 14000 28000 - - -

NGC Price and Value Guides Disclaimer

Disclaimer: The prices listed in the various NGC Price and Value Guides are compiled from a number of independent, third party sources in the numismatic community which NGC believes to be reliable. Prices provided are averages, not specific prices for individual coins. Further, because these prices are only updated from time to time, they do not reflect short term pricing trends, which are quite common and are often quite dramatic, given the volatile nature of the collectible coin marketplace. This is especially true for rare coins, where there are fewer sales and greater variations in sale prices. For all of these reasons, the prices in these guides are designed to serve merely as one of many measures and factors that coin buyers and sellers can use in determining coin values. These prices are not intended, and should not be relied upon, to replace the due diligence and — when appropriate — expert consultation that coin buyers and sellers should undertake when entering into a coin transaction. As such, NGC disclaims all warranties, express or implied, with respect to the information contained in the NGC Guides. By using the NGC Guides, the user agrees that neither NGC nor any of its affiliates, shareholders, officers, employees or agents shall have any liability for any loss or damage of any kind, including without limitation any loss arising from reliance on the information contained in the Guides.

Census

 
NGC GRADE SUMMARY

Total Graded: 255
Low Grade: 58
Average Grade: 64
High Grade: 67

The chart showing 58 series, 60 series, 61 series, 62 series, 63 series, 64 series, 65 series, 66 series, 67 series.
NGC CENSUS DETAIL Last Updated: 11/24/2020 1866 RAYS 5C PF
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970Total
Base----------11313126756263---182
----------------13----4
-----------------------
-----------------------
Total----------11313126757293---186
 ----------1%1%2%7%6%36%31%16%2%--- 
1866 RAYS 5C PF CA
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970Total
Base--------------18222510---66
-----------------22---4
-----------------------
-----------------------
Total--------------18222712---70
 --------------1%11%31%39%17%--- 
1866 RAYS 5C PF UC
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970Total
Base----------------232---7
-----------------------
-----------------13---4
-----------------------
Total----------------245---11
 ----------------18%36%45%--- 

NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1866 RAYS 5C PF CA
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base60466783899011751396152616471736179918862197228823812585281332273945672086443111555734
6257248891052124914391566167717571828199022272319244926612951346648707361161343932158521
00000015661677175718281990222723192449266129513466487073611613400
00000016071706177818572093225823502517273730893706579580032362500
1866 RAYS 5C PF UC
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base6928401013121214361691184119802082214722412345244526852821323837744578757097563578164033
74189810791287152117411887201421042178227623782525273029603417404255758299184314519867235
00000018872014210421782276237825252730296034174042557582991843100
00000019342048212522102310241226052776309935954310657390272710600
1866 RAYS 5C PF
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base56362072587410661271139314771558160917072087217922682464268530333774647379692827950688
582655775938113413121421150415751642183421182209233325382801328046746972147393574953222
00000014211504157516421834211822092333253828013280467469721473900
00000014491531159216741960214822382399261129173527557374702150900
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: PF 67 ULTRA CAMEO
Points: 8299
Owner: DMD2
 
Grade: PF 66
Points: 4674
Owner: TAC Enterprises
 
View the Registry Image Gallery

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Conservation Showcase: Proof 1866 5 Cent

5/3/2010 — A recent example from our conservation laboratory.
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NGC Auction Central Disclaimer

NGC Auction Central Disclaimer

Disclaimer: The auction prices realized listed in the NGC Auction Central are compiled from a number of independent, third party sources in the numismatic community which NGC believes to be reliable. The auction data listed by NGC may occasionally contain typographical or input errors that can result in incorrect prices realized appearing on the NGC website. Therefore, the prices realized listed in NGC Auction Central are designed to serve merely as one of many measures and facts that coin buyers and sellers can use in determining coin values. These prices are not intended, and should not be relied upon, to replace the due diligence and – when appropriate – expert consultation that coin buyers and sellers should undertake when entering into a coin transaction. As such, NGC disclaims all warranties, express or implied, with respect to the information contained in the NGC Auction Central. By using the NGC Auction Central, the user agrees that neither NGC nor any of its affiliates, shareholders, officers, employees or agents shall have any liability for any loss or damage of any kind, including without limitation any loss arising from reliance on the information contained in the NGC Auction Central.