Coins December 2021

Since its inception, in 1955, Coins magazine has been a hobby leader in providing collectors with important and timely information key to making wise decisions on what to collect and how to collect. With monthly contributions from leading hobby experts, it's your one-stop hobby source. Get market trends, buying techniques, and historical perspectives on all aspects of coins (numismatics). Each issue delivers in-depth analysis, up-to-the-minute valuations, answers to all of your coin questions and more!

United States
Active Interest Media
12 Issues

in this issue

8 min
a good year for collector’s finds

I got a dime and two cents in change at our local Tractor Supply. All three were Philadelphia mints. Living in New Mexico, I don’t usually see ‘P’ mint coins until about a year later. I am still looking for some 2019 and 2020 issues to fill my books. Daryl Conley Truth or Consequences, N.M. A fellow friend let me look at coins from which his wife inherited. e told me she had a leather pouch that was passed down from generations who were from Philadelphia. In the pouch was a 1793 half cent! Steve Cheaney Address withheld During a transaction I acquired a 2021-P Jefferson nickel and a 2008-P Arizona quarter. the nickel looks as if it has been circulating for a short time and has just the slightest bit of wear. The…

14 min
collecting jefferson nickels

WHEN I WAS A YOUNG COLLECTOR in the 1950s, my main coin of interest was the Lincoln cent. This was followed closely by Jefferson and Buffalo nickels. You can easily see their appeal to a young, not too enterprising kid: They didn’t cost much to collect. In Jefferson nickels, the low-mintage 1950-D had recently made its appearance, and stories abound of how people acquired and saved vast quantities of uncirculated rolls. In just a few years, the price of these rolls, which was about $40 ($1 apiece) at the time I started following them in a coin newspaper, would begin its ascent. Before that happened, I managed to convince my father that we really needed a roll of these “rare” nickels, he wrote a check, and I mailed it to a dealer…

5 min
what is a numismatist?

This was the title of a topic I found explored in a recent CoinTalk (CT) thread. The original poster (OP) had been accused by a “large coin dealer” of not really being a numismatist. According to the OP, the dealer told him, “You are a collector, not a numismatist.” When OP asked for clarification, the response was, “You never made a living selling coins.” Of course, this begs the question of what qualifies a person to refer to themselves as a numismatist. Do you have to be a full-time coin dealer in order to be a numismatist, as this dealer seems to think? To defend his standing as a numismatist, OP referred the dealer to the following Wikipedia definition: “A numismatist is a specialist in numismatics. . .. Numismatists include collectors, specialist…

12 min
the morgan dollar part iii

WITH MORGAN and Barber working at top speed, Barber was able to report on March 23 that the new hub would be ready within the next few days and that working dies as early as April 11. Morgan, however, reported on the 25th that the hub was actually finished on that date and working dies would be ready from it on about April 2. Although neither man indicated which hub was being worked on, it is likely that Morgan was speaking of the reverse and Barber the obverse. (At the same time that Morgan reported on the progress of the reverse hub, he also notified Linderman that this new hub would be used to reimpress the altered design onto about 50 of the old reverse dies then on hand.) In the…

7 min
collecting possibilities among the half dimes

WHEN A YOUNG UNITED STATES Congress got around to authorizing a Mint and deciding on a system of coinage, the half dime was the smallest silver piece in the line-up. There are plenty of collector stories about what was then called the “half disme” – pronounced “half deem” – being the very first coins made as part of the fledgling, new monetary system, even though their total number was tiny. And yet for years after this first attempt, half dime production could politely be called an afterthought of the Mint. The first year that saw over one million of these little silver pieces produced was 1829, decades after the people running the Mint had gotten down to the business of making money by making money. But the denomination would continue…

1 min
all areas of market continue their rise

The market for coins is continuing in a singular direction – straight up. This includes all market sectors ranging from rare to common to bullion issues. The overall strength of the market can be seen through the sheer number of truly rare coins that have been offered at auction recently. Many of these coins will only appear when their owners have confidence that the hammer price such coins will realize will be strong. None of the recently sold rarities has disappointed their consigners. Dealers will attest to the challenge of maintaining desirable inventory recently. Collectors continue to be fussy, looking towards quality among coins that can be classified as collectible but are somewhat available. For this reason, more lower-condition, generally available coins are being treated as bullion than in the past.…