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Shield Nickels

Shield Nickels

Shield Nickels began production in 1866. In 1865, Mint Director James Pollock officially endorsed the creation of a nickel five-cent piece to replace the hated fractional notes. The Mint's chief engraver, James B. Longacre, created a design based on his previous two-cent piece, with a shield as the main obverse motif. On May 16, 1866, legislation enabling the new coin was enacted, and Shield Nickels began to be struck that year.

Grading Shield Nickels

G4 Good

- All letters in motto readable.

VG8 Very Good

- Motto stands out clearly. Rims worn slightly but even. Part of shield lines visible.

F12 Fine

- Half of each olive leaf is smooth.

EF40 Extremely Fine

- Leaf tips show slight wear. Cross over shield slightly worn.

AU50 About Uncirculated

- Traces of light wear on only the high points of the design. Half of mint luster is present.
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