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Liberty Head "V" Nickel Values & Prices

How Much Is My Liberty Head "V" Nickel Worth?

By , About.com Coin Expert

Liberty Head
Image Courtesy of: Heritage Auction Galleries, Ha.com

This guide provides an approximate value of how much your Liberty Head "V" nickels that were minted from 1883 to 1912 are worth.  The table below gives you average coin prices and values based upon the condition of the coin. 

Key Dates, Rarities and Varieties

The following Liberty Head "V" nickels in any condition, are worth considerable more than common dates.  As such, these coins are frequently counterfeit or altered.  Have the coin authenticated by a reputable coin dealer or third party grading service.

  • 1885
  • 1886
  • 1912-S
  • 1913 (only five known examples; highly counterfeited coin)

Condition or Grade Examples

Liberty Head Nickel Average Circulated Condition Circulated Liberty Head Nickel in Average Uncirculated Condition Uncirculated
Click on the photos above for a larger image.
Photos courtesy of Teletrade Coin Auctions, www.teletrade.com

Mint Marks

Liberty Head nickels were produced at three different mints: Philadelphia (no mint mark), Denver (D) and San Francisco (S).  As illustrated in the picture below, the mint mark is located on the reverse of the coin on the lower right side. 

Liberty Head Nickel mint mark location
Mint Mark Location
Image Copyright: 2015 James Bucki; All rights reserved.

1883 No "CENTS" and "CENTS" Type

In 1883, the first year of production for Liberty Head nickels, the denomination of five cents was indicated by the roman numeral "V" on the reverse. Enterprising people gold plated the coins in an effort to pass them off as five dollar gold pieces. In order to stop this practice, the U.S. Mint added the word "CENTS" at the bottom of the coin on the reverse.  This created two types of Liberty Head nickels in 1883: the Without CENTS (or No "CENTS") and the With CENTS.

Liberty Head Nickel mint mark location
1883 With CENTS and Without CENTS
{Click on the image above for a lager photo}
Images Courtesy of: Heritage Auction Galleries, Ha.com

Liberty Head "V" Nickels Average Prices and Values

The following table lists the buy price (what you can expect to pay to a dealer to purchase the coin) and sell value (what you can expect a dealer to pay you if you sell the coin). The first column lists the date and mint mark (see the photo above) followed by the buy price and the sell value for an average circulated Liberty Head "V" nickel.  The next two columns list the buy price and the sell value for an average uncirculated. These are approximate retail prices and wholesale values. The actual offer you receive from a coin dealer will vary depending on the actual grade of the coin and a number of other factors that determine its worth.

Date & Mint Circulated   Uncirculated
Buy Sell Buy Sell
1883 No Cents $9.30 $4.50 $42.00 $28.00
1883 With Cents $25.00 $13.00 $190.00 $110.00
1884 $29.00 $15.00 $250.00 $160.00
1885 * $540.00 $280.00 $3,300.00 $2,100.00
1886 * $270.00 $130.00 $1,800.00 $1,200.00
1887 $20.00 $10.00 $180.00 $120.00
1888 $41.00 $21.00 $340.00 $220.00
1889 $16.00 $8.00 $200.00 $130.00
1890 $15.00 $8.00 $200.00 $120.00
1891 $12.90 $6.20 $170.00 $110.00
1892 $11.70 $5.70 $170.00 $110.00
1893 $11.70 $5.70 $170.00 $110.00
1894 $42.00 $22.00 $380.00 $230.00
1895 $11.40 $5.50 $190.00 $130.00
1896 $20.00 $10.00 $230.00 $150.00
1897 $7.20 $3.70 $150.00 $90.00
1898 $5.90 $3.00 $150.00 $90.00
1899 $5.10 $2.40 $120.00 $80.00
1900 $4.90 $2.40 $120.00 $80.00
1901 $4.60 $2.30 $110.00 $80.00
1902 $4.70 $2.20 $110.00 $70.00
1903 $3.90 $2.00 $110.00 $70.00
1904 $3.70 $1.90 $100.00 $70.00
1905 $3.90 $1.90 $110.00 $70.00
1906 $3.80 $1.90 $100.00 $70.00
1907 $3.80 $1.90 $120.00 $70.00
1908 $3.70 $1.90 $110.00 $70.00
1909 $3.70 $1.80 $120.00 $70.00
1910 $3.90 $1.90 $100.00 $70.00
1911 $4.70 $2.30 $100.00 $60.00
1912 $4.50 $2.30 $100.00 $60.00
1912-D $8.60 $4.10 $310.00 $200.00
1912-S * $150.00 $80.00 $1,900.00 $1,300.00
1913 (5 known) * - - $2,700,000 $1,700,000
Complete
Date-Mint Set
^
Total Coins: 32
$1,300.00 $850.00 $11,500.00 $9,000.00
Complete
Date Set
^
Total Coins:
$1,100.00 $750.00   $9,500.00 $6,500.00

^ = Does not include the extremely rare 1913 Liberty Head Nickel
* = See the section above "Key Dates, Rarities and Varieties" for more information on these coins.

These prices and values have been compiled through my personal analysis of the coin market, referencing publications such as Numismatic News, Coin World, "The Official Blue Book; Handbook of U.S. Coins," "The Official Red Book; A Guide Book of United States Coins", The Coin Dealer Newsletter, published auction results and consulting with various coin dealers.

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Disclaimer: The information on this site and all subsequent communications are provided for discussion purposes only, and should not be misconstrued as investment advice. All information, including valuations, on this website has been compiled from reliable sources and every effort has been made to eliminate errors and questionable data. However, the possibility of an error in a work of this magnitude always exists. Additionally, further analysis, research and/or discoveries may challenge the beliefs presented in this article. The author and About.com will not be responsible for any losses that may occur in the purchase, sale, or other transaction of coins and other items because of the information that is contained on this website. Visitors who feel they may have discovered an error or inconsistency are asked to please contact the author so that the situation may be investigated and/or corrected. Under no circumstances does this information contained on this website represent a recommendation to buy or sell coins, precious metals, exonumia or paper currency.

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