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user_4972's Blog

07 Nov 2015

Strange Denominations

| user_4972

The United States of America has issued some strange denominations over its lifetime. I will talk about most of these excluding the two and a half dollar piece, as I will write an article on United States gold coins, and half dimes, as they have a value of five cents, like a nickel. The lowest denomination, the half cent, was worth half a cent; these were phased out with the large cents in 1858. The half cent's value was worth enough to be used so it was abolished. The next denomination, the two cent piece was one of the shortest lived in U.S. history, lasting for only a few years near the civil war. It was also the first coin the have the motto, "In God We Trust," on it. The two cent piece was also the inspiration of the shield nickel. The three cent piece had two different varieties. The first is the three cent silver, and is the harder of the two to find. The total mintage of these coins is not event thirty-five million. The second variety is called the three cent nickel. It is much easier to find. The next denomination was the twenty cent piece. These were issued for a few years and look almost the same the quarters, and as a fact were not well received by the public. The twenty cent piece is one of the hardest types to find with the lowest price for everyone costing almost $100. Over the one dollar mark we have valuable gold coins. The two and a half dollar coin is excluded from these.The three dollar piece had a fair run, but is still highly sought after. Most examples will cost upwards of $1000. One of the most valuable coin, even in US coins is the four dollar piece. This coin is known as the 'Stella.' Very few of these coins were ever made. All of the coins, however, were pattern coins. Almost all of these coins will cost more than one hundred thousand dollars. The most expensive one will cost eight hundred and fifty thousand dollars. There are two varieties of the Stella. Another notable strange denomination is the Half Union. The Half Union was a pattern coin worth fifty dollars. There are only two known examples of this coin and are both kept in the Smithsonian. The United States had made many strange denominations of the course of it's history.

-Peyton Smith

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