Did you know that the most valuable coin in the world, the “Flowing Hair Silver Dollar,” is worth 10 million dollars?
Coin collecting is a fun and educational hobby that can connect you to the past and to many nations throughout the world.
The market for old coins is constantly changing, so what are some of the best coins to collect today? Read on to learn about the 7 top coins to collect this year!
7 Valuable Old Coins
Every coin has a story. Some of the most valuable coins have some of the most interesting stories.
1. 1908 St Gaudens Arabic Numerals No Motto
The name of the 1908 St. Gaudens Arabic Numerals No Motto is quite a mouthful. It’s a gold coin that was worth $20 when it was minted in 1908. It is considered by many to be the number one most beautiful coin ever made by the United States Mint.
Now, why the “No Motto” in the name? In 1909, the St Gaudens coins were made with the United States motto “In God We Trust” printed on it, as on most American coins. However, the 1908 design left the motto out.
Additionally, the 1908 design is unique in that it sacrifices easy use for bankers for the sake of beauty. The 1908 coin is difficult to stack in large columns and was discontinued.
2. 1859 Liberty Head Double Eagle $20
An “eagle” coin is a $10 coin, so a “double eagle” is $20. Of course, $20 was the value of the coin in 1859, not today.
The 1859 Liberty Head Double Eagle $20 coins were cast in gold. They weigh almost exactly one ounce. In today’s money, that one ounce of gold is worth over $1500. However, the value of this coin goes far beyond the value of its metal.
Collectors love this coin because of its size and weight. Modern coins have a value that’s independent of the value of their metal, a dime can be worth 10 times as much as a penny despite its smaller size.
But when it comes to gold coins, the more valuable the coin at the time of its minting, the bigger it is. The “double eagle” is the largest normal sized coin you’ll find.
An 1859 Liberty Head Double Eagle $20 can be worth anywhere from a few thousand dollars all the way up to over $250,000.
3. 1909 S VDB Lincoln Cent
The 1909 S VDB Lincoln Cent was popular when they made it and remains popular to this day, especially among coin collectors.
It was originally minted in 1909 as a celebration of the 100th anniversary of the birth of Abraham Lincoln, and holds a special place today as the coin that many collectors seek first when making a collection.
The “VDB” in the name refers to the maker’s initials which are printed on the bottom of one side of the coin. Coinmakers are rarely allowed to include all three of their initials on a coin, marking these rare US coins as unique in more ways than one.
4. 1914 D Lincoln Cent
Staying on Lincoln for a moment, the 1914 D Lincoln Cent has the rare quality of not having been saved by the mint.
Usually, when a mint makes a coin, it will hold in storage a significant number of the coins that it keeps our of circulation. Because of this policy, even rare coins are not as rare as you might think since there are some that have been carefully stored away for many years.
But the 1914 D Lincoln Cent had only a few uncirculated coins, meaning that only a few select coin collectors can boast that their coin collection has one.
Lincoln is a popular and admired president, and Lincoln coins often end up as desirable collector’s items.
5. 1921 Peace Dollar
The 1921 Peace Dollar was made to celebrate the end of World War I. The Peace dollar was made in 10 years total, from 1921 to 1928, and also from 1934 to 1935. However, due to a late start minting the original 1921 coins, barely more than a million of the dollars were cast, which is a very small number where coins are concerned.
Many designs were submitted for the commemorative coin, and the winning design features the Goddess of Liberty on one side and a bald eagle holding an olive branch on the other. The word “Peace” is printed on the bottom.
6. The Four Dollar Stella
In 1879, the United States created the “stella” coin. “Stella” is Latin for “star,” and a stella coin was worth four dollars. At the time, four dollars was of comparable worth to 20 French franc coins, 20 Italian lire coins, and 8 Dutch florin coins.
The stella was created to be America’s answer to these European counterpart coins.
This historic coin features a star on one side, one of the symbols of America, and a woman’s face on the other, representing Lady Liberty. Some versions of the coin feature Lady Liberty with her fair free and flowing, others with her hair coiled on her head.
7. 1878 CC Morgan Silver Dollar
The oldest coin on our list, the 1878 Morgan Dollar was the new design made after they discontinued the Seated Liberty dollar due to a new law, the Coinage Act of 1873. It is made of 90% Silver, with 10% copper.
The designer of the coin was lucky enough to get his own face on the coin, which was made for 26 years.
There are many ways to measure the value of old coins, from their nominal value, to their metal value, their educational value, and their collector’s value. Coin collecting is a beautiful way to connect with people all around the world who share an interest in history.