Coin Specifications

Category: Shield Five Cents (1866-1883)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 561,000
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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1871 5C MS obverse 1871 5C MS reverse
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Description & Analysis

The mintage of all minor coins plunged in 1871, as a new law was passed that permitted the Treasury to reissue minor coins that came in for redemption. Previously, such coins were not easily redeemed, and those so received by the Treasury had been destroyed, a remarkably wasteful system indeed. The half million nickels struck during 1871 thus represent merely the number needed to replace those lost as the result of normal attrition through fires and other causes.

This date is moderately scarce in all grades. Mint State pieces are very scarce, with gems being true rarities. As a general rule, however, this date was more carefully made than in earlier years.

A low mintage resulted in only a few varieties, as far fewer dies were needed for such a limited production.

GRADE SUMMARY

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Price Guide

Last Updated: 11/12/2019

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

1871 5C MS
  GVGFVFXF505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ 80.00 100.00 145 200 325 410 435 470 550 600 620 685 825 1270 2150 3650 - - - -
$ - - 440 - - - 625 700 900 1400 2500 6250 - -

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Census

 
NGC GRADE SUMMARY

Total Graded: 125
Low Grade: PrAg
Average Grade: 58
High Grade: 66

The chart showing PrAg series, 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.
NGC CENSUS DETAIL Last Updated: 12/10/2019 1871 5C MS
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970Total
Base215212484-5101271524175----124
-----------------1----1
---------------1------1
-----------------------
Total215212484-5101271525176----126
 2 %1 %4 %2 %10 %3 %6 %3 %-4 %8 %1 %2 %6 %12 %20 %13 %5 %---- 
1871 5C MS PL
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970Total
Base-------------1--------1
----------------1-----1
-----------------------
-----------------------
Total-------------1--1-----2
 -------------50 %--50 %----- 

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# 464 $891.00
4/26/2006 PCGS MS 65   Heritage Auctions 2006 April (CSNS) Signature Auction #404, 404/Lot# 854 $4,600.00
7/27/2009 NGC MS 60   David Lawrence Rare Coins Monday - Internet Auction # 396, 402/Lot# 170 $517.50
5/6/2012 NGC Details F Details  GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 05/06/2012, 21/Lot# 49781 $53.00
2/22/2013 PCGS MS 65   Stack's Bowers The March 2013 Baltimore Auction, 181/Lot# 1230 $3,055.00
4/1/2013 PCGS MS 63   Teletrade Auction 3424, 3424/Lot# 1300 $969.38
11/1/2015 NGC Details VF Details  Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(2), 131545/Lot# 23482 $117.50
3/6/2019 NGC XF 45   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(1), 131911/Lot# 23248 $264.00


NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1871 5C MS
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base8111114319024839544248953756861364270586510511206175322683984103361758719855
911211582092974104575055475836226637589271102138819242840610112753183430
000000457505547583622663758927110213881924284061011275300
000000473521557598632684811989115415702096341282181517000
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: MS 63
Points: 1051
Owner: Amazon
 
Grade: MS 62
Points: 865
Owner: Whidbey Island Collection
 
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