The Jefferson nickel debuted in 1938, instead of the Buffalo nickel in the 25th year of its production run. A design contest come commemorate founding Father and third president the the United states Thomas Jefferson, open up to “all American sculptors”, was held in 1937. German émigré and American artist Felix Oscar Schlag to be the winner. He obtained $1,000 for his effort.

You are watching: How much is a 1969 nickel worth

Schlag’s principle for the obverse, which arts scholar Cornelius Vermeule claimed was comparable to Jean-Antoine Houdon’s 1789 bust that Jefferson, appeared essentially the same on the five-cent nickel because that 66 years. His original reverse concept, however–featuring an innovative three-quarters view of Jefferson’s mansion Monticello–was garbage by the Treasury Department. Various changes were requested, the most far-reaching of i beg your pardon is the flat, head-on portrayal that Monticello that is discovered on Jefferson nickels minted to this really day (though commemorative worries with various reverses have additionally been released). According to the rule of the style competition, the win artist would obtain no extr compensation for this extra work.

1969-D Jefferson Nickel

202,807,500 Jefferson nickels were struck in ~ the Denver Mint in 1969, rather a sum, but a far cry indigenous the 2.8 billion nickels struck in ~ the Philadelphia and Denver mints just 5 years earlier, in 1964. Because that 1969, the Mint allocated every one of its nickel manufacturing to the Denver and also San Francisco facilities. No nickels to be struck in Philadelphia in 1969 or in 1970. Through a mintage this high, the 1969-D nickel is a typical coin that have the right to be readily discovered in circulation. Practically fifty year old, most coins encountered in the wild will certainly be fine circulated, although the is possible to uncover examples that make it through in around Uncirculated grades.

Record Setter

What is 1969-D Jefferson nickel worth? This is an easily answered question that calls for a little bit of texture and also context. In circulated grades, the 1969-D nickel is worth its confront value of 5 cents. In uncirculated condition, the 1969-D takes on a various character. Think about that a 1969 United states Mint set sells for about $9.00 and includes among each coin win by the Mint, consisting of a 40% silver Kennedy half dollar. In this set, one would certainly likely give each nickel a “value” of about $1. Current eBay sales figures correspond through this estimate. This is a premium that twenty times the challenge value.

Once certified by a significant grading service, the numismatic premium the the 1969-D escalates relying on grade and strike. The Mint State grading range is made up for grades 60 to 70. A coin in MS60 is technically uncirculated, but heavily abused and practically undesirable in any kind of instance where higher quality examples are available. In MS63, the coin is described as being in selection Uncirculated condition. In this grade, the coin may have subdued luster and a number of dings, hits, or marks that come about from coin-on-coin contact.

At two qualities higher, a coin is thought about Gem Uncirculated. The visibility of dings and also hits will be considerably less. At this grade, the coin will have full luster and will generally show up attractive. Indigenous MS65 come MS69, the level of hits and also dings dramatically diminishes till they space imperceptible come the naked eye.

MS70 is considered perfect. Because that the 1969-D Jefferson nickel, MS70 is a theoretical grade. No company strike nickel the this duration was ever struck with the amount of treatment necessary for a coin come qualify because that this grade. In fact, PCGS has actually not graded a single 1969-D Jefferson nickel over MS66 and NGC has certified just 16 instances in your top populace grade for this issue, MS67. Provided the expense of coin certification, only gem high quality coins have the right to be profitably certified.

On November 2018, an example graded MS64 by PCGS offered for $2.58 on eBay. Two weeks earlier, one MS66 (PCGS) offered for $56. The going rate for one MS65 is roughly $10.

Record-setting 1969-D Jefferson Nickel

In respectable 2016, this prices were fully blown far by the$30,550realized at Stack’s Bowers’ ANA World’s fair of Money Rarities Night Auction for a 1969-D Jefferson nickel graded MS65FS by PCGS.

This incredible amount was accomplished for 2 reasons. The very first is the for years, committed Jefferson nickel collectors have actually been pursuing fully-struck examples. As result of the natureof the metal, the rate at i beg your pardon nickels space struck because that circulation, and also the period of the grasp hubs, very couple of examples the this era space well struck. The common example struck this year reflects these details in one amorphous blob.The record-setting nickel offered by Stack’s Bowers is to-date, the only full Steps nickel ever before certified because that this issue.

To knife the designation of full Steps, a Jefferson nickel must meet the following criteria:


In this graphic, you watch that the steps, situated on the architecture between the stylobate, a level pavement ar on which rest the 4 front columns the the design, and the structure block at the basic of the steps. Components such as die condition, highlight pressure, and incidental contact with other coins, play a far-reaching factor in even if it is a Jefferson nickel will certainly earn the full Steps designation.


A left-facing bust the President cutting board Jefferson, consisting of a colonial-era pigtail and also strikingly comparable in information to the file of Jean-Antoine Houdon’s 1789 bust, takes increase the majority of the obverse. The optimal of his head nearly touches the rim, and the barest that truncations is clearly shows at the bottom whereby Jefferson’s left shoulder meets the sheet of the coin. The motto IN GOD we TRUST–which ended up being the nationwide motto in 1956–arcs clockwise along many of the length of the left next of the coin, starting from Jefferson’s chest and extending come his hairline. The inscriptions LIBERTY and the day 1964 operation clockwise along the best side behind Jefferson. A little five-pointed star divides the 2 inscriptionsA small mint mark “D” is found beneath the date. Felix Schlag’s initials “FS” show up below the bust truncation (this attribute was added in 1966).


The reverse features a front watch of Monticello, Jefferson’s mansion close to Charlottesville, Virginia. The polymath Jefferson design the neoclassical structure himself, based upon architectural values from the Italian Renaissance; the name “Monticello” originates from the Italian for “mound” or “little mountain”. The building loses lot of that is dimensionality in the flattened rendering, yet the octagonal nature that the dome have the right to still be interpreted, and better strikes reveal far-reaching detail in the steps and portico.

See more: Pin On The Secret Life Of The American Teenager Madison, Pin On The Secret Life Of The American Teenager

Atop the turning back is the motto E PLURIBUS UNUM (“Out the Many, One”). The name MONTICELLO–the placement of i beg your pardon on the coin was among the revisions forced upon Schlag by the Mint–is found in a straight line automatically under the building; the positions and spacing the the other inscriptions had to be changed to do room because that it. The denomination five CENTS creates a tenderness curving line beneath that, and also the engraving UNITED claims OF AMERICA operation counterclockwise follow me the bottom leaf of the coin.

Coin Specifications:

Country:United States
Year the Issue:1969
Denomination:Five Cents
Mint Mark:D (Denver)
Alloy:75% Copper, 25% Nickel
Weight:5 grams
Diameter:21.21 mm
OBV DesignerFelix Schlag
REV DesignerFelix Schlag