Description and Analysis

Nickel Three Cents
1882 3CN PF

Description & Analysis

Proof sales slid a bit for 1882, but this date is still rather common as compared to pieces from the 1860s-70s. The demand is higher than would normally be the case, as the mintage of coins for circulation was quite low. Most date collectors settle for a proof, due to the rarity of MS examples.

The coin illustrated is typical of many proofs from the 1880s in that it has an incomplete strike and less than fully brilliant fields. Numismatists have struggled for a century and more to distinguish prooflike currency strikes from mediocre proofs, as they so often look very much alike. Until fairly recently the prices for both were about the same, but MS coins are now more highly prized for their rarity.