Jump to content
CoinPeople.com

The Dime:


mmarotta
 Share

Recommended Posts

The dime is a truly American coin. For instance, although other nations such as Canada and Singapore have "dollars" only America has the dime. Futhermore, our other coins carry their denominations -- "Quarter Dollar" and "One Cent" and so on -- but what is a "dime"? The name is unique to our nation.

 

(Facts here originally appeared in “Building a U.S. Dime Type Set,” The Numismatist, Vol 16. No. 5, May 2002.)

 

  • If you start with the current issue Roosevelt dime, you can find examples certified Proof 70. One problem with such easy perfection is that it is impossible to complete a type set of dimes entirely in Proof-70. While a Proof-70 "Roosie" can be had for less than $20, a Mint State 60 uncirculated Draped Bust Dime from 1796 will cost at least $4,000 -- if one is on the market at all.
  • The Mercury dime is properly called the "Winged Head Liberty" dime. The designer, Adolph A. Weinman based his coin on a bust he made of Elsie Kachel Stevens. Mercury dimes were struck in astronomical quantities. As a result of these populations, high grade examples are affordable. The collector with an eye for sharp detail in a Mint state coin will appreciate the fact that the 1916-P can be found certified in MS-63 or above for about $100.
  • The dimes designed by Charles Barber carried a lot of commerce that wore these coins flat. Therefore, Barber coins in higher collector grades (Extemely Fine and About Uncirculated) are always in demand. Proof Barber dimes are available for under $500. It is technically possible, though practically difficult, to find a certified Mint State Barber dime for less than $100.
  • Chief Engraver Christian Gobrecht's Seated Liberty coins enjoyed an unparalled run of 56 years 1837-1891. The original design was the work of Thomas Sully. Miss Liberty herself bears a strong resemblence to Blanche Sully, the painter's daughter, looking over her right shoulder, in a work executed in 1834. The collector building a "complete" type set of dimes must make some choices. The reverse of the Seated Liberty from 1837 to 1859 featured olive branches. Starting in 1860, the reverse carried "Newlin's Wreath of Cereals." The first two years of issue, 1837 and 1838, are another major variety. The dimes of 1838-1853 are considered a single major type of Seated Liberty. In 1853, the weight of the dime was reduced from 2.67 grams to 2.49 grams. To mark this change, the Mint added arrows to the date for the years 1853-1855. Arrows again bracketed the date in 1873 and 1874 when the weight of the dime increased to 2.50 grams. Another choice is whether to include an 1860-S. The Mints at Philadelphia and New Orleans began striking dimes with "Newlin's cereal wreath" in 1860. However, the San Francisco Mint struck the older reverses in 1860. Proofs for the common dates 1875-1891 (no arrows) cost about $600. Certified Mint State coins from these years can be found near $150. Coins graded Extremely Fine are known at the $20 level, however finding a truly problem-free Seated Liberty dime in this grade can be a challenge.
  • Pursuing Capped Bust Dimes 1809-1837 requires the same kinds of choices that come with the Seated Liberty series. On the one hand, production levels for common years make Mint State examples affordable for the average collector who is willing to use a savings account while learning about the series: for $1000 you can have your pick and get money back. There are two major varieties of Capped Bust Dime. In 1828, the Mint made several changes to the design of these coins. Hardly noticeable except to a numismatist, specialists in the series consider these changes significant.
  • Numismatic legend says that the model for the Draped Bust coinage was Philadelphia socialite Ann Willing Bingham. Like the Seateds, the Draped Bust dimes 1796-1807 feature two different reverses. From 1798-1807, the "heraldic eagle" is a stylized symbol of the republic. The "small eagle" of 1796-1707 is a more natural image. In no sense are these coins "cheap" or "affordable." Only in grades near or below Very Fine do their prices drop below $1000. Even in Good, the Heraldic Eagles run about $200 and that will not open the bidding for a Small Eagle in Good.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Interesting information. Oddly enough and although most collectors collect Dimes, not a real lot of books out there on that coin. At coin shows I see books on just about everything on Earth in the way of coinage. But no books on Dimes. There is a book on the market on Mercury Dimes but so far never seen one at a coin show, coin store nor book stores.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I love dimes. A great size for a collectable coin in my opinion. I am missing all the types pre-Barber. I am very very tempted to add a few!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Interesting information. Oddly enough and although most collectors collect Dimes, not a real lot of books out there on that coin. At coin shows I see books on just about everything on Earth in the way of coinage. But no books on Dimes. There is a book on the market on Mercury Dimes but so far never seen one at a coin show, coin store nor book stores.

Mike had an earlier thread about dimes here where he lists 7 or 8 books about different dimes series:

http://www.coinpeople.com/index.php?/topic/24618-assembling-a-dime-collection/

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes all interesting however, not sure why people use this forum to quote others works instead of thier own thoughts, ideas, information. Always sort of reminds to just skip that type of post. Why not just give a reference to something and let people go there is they choose? Hate to be pessimistic but just my opinion.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 year later...
  • 3 weeks later...

Mike had an earlier thread about dimes here where he lists 7 or 8 books about different dimes series:

http://www.coinpeopl...ime-collection/

Guess you missed my point. As I said, I've never seen any books on Dimes at coin shows, coin stores, hobby stores, book stores nor any place that sells books, magazines, etc. Yes, there well may be many, many books on Dimes somewhere on Earth, but so far, I've never seen one for sale. Possibly if I searched on line, eventually I'd find some. However, so far I've nver purchased anything on line.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Mike had an earlier thread about dimes here where he lists 7 or 8 books about different dimes series:

http://www.coinpeopl...ime-collection/

Yes I know but what I said was I've never seen a book on Dimes at coin shows. I go to from 2 to 4 coin shows a Month. And again, so far never saw a book on Dimes at any of them.

Hate to repeat but just wanted to make it clear that for some reason not a popular book

Ever wonder why Dimes are small. If you think about coins you would think that the more the face value, the larger the coins. So it should be a really small Penny, followed by the Nickel, then a Dime should be next larger in size. But for some odd reason they went with Silver for the Dime so it had to be smaller than the ohters. Yet as you go to the Quarter, then Half Dollar and the Old Dollar they got bigger and bigger.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...