Five Cents 1882 Shield Nickel, Coin from United States - detailed information

Five Cents 1882 Shield Nickel, Coin from United States
CoinFive Cents 1882 Shield Nickel

The Shield Nickel was the first United States five-cent piece (abbreviated as ) to be made out of copper-nickel, the same alloy of which American nickels are struck today (75% copper, 25% nickel). Designed by James B. Longacre, the coin was issued from 1866 until 1883, when it was replaced by the Liberty Head nickel. The coin takes its name from the motif on its obverse, and was the first five-cent coin referred to as a "nickel"; silver pieces of that denomination had been known as "half dimes" (the Seated Liberty half dime was issued in parallel with the new nickels for several years).

Silver half dimes had been struck from the early days of the United States Mint in the late 18th century. Those disappeared from circulation, along with most other coins, in the economic turmoil of the Civil War. In 1864, the Mint successfully introduced low-denomination coins, whose intrinsic worth did not approach their face value. Industrialist Joseph Wharton advocated coins containing nickel - a metal in which he had significant financial interests. When the Mint proposed a copper-nickel five-cent piece, Congress required that the coin be heavier than the Mint had suggested, allowing Wharton to sell more of the metal to the government.

Longacre's design was based on his two-cent pieces, and symbolises the strength of a unified America. The nickel proved difficult to strike and the reverse, or tails, design was modified in 1867. Even so, production difficulties continued, causing many minor varieties which are collected today. Minting of the Shield nickel for circulation was suspended in 1876 for a period of over two years due to a glut of low-denomination coinage and it was struck in only small quantities until 1882. The following year, the coin was replaced by Charles E. Barber's Liberty Head design.

These coins have not been recalled and are still current, although they do not circulate any more - most having been worn out, lost or hoarded by collectors.

MintPhiladelphia Mint Mint MarkNo mint mark Total Mintage11,476,000 (11.5 million)
Obverse
United States / Five Cents 1882 Shield Nickel - obverse photo

The obverse design shows, within a toothed border, Longacre's version of the Great Seal of the United States.

His design focuses on the shield, or escutcheon, as a defensive weapon, signifying strength and self-protection through unity. The upper part of the shield, or "chief", symbolises Congress, while the 13 vertical stripes, or "paleways", represent the states (originally, there were 13 states); consequently the entire escutcheon symbolises the strength of the federal government through the unity of the states. In heraldic engraving, thin vertical lines represent red, clear areas white and horizontal lines blue, thus the escutcheon is coloured red, white and blue and is meant to evoke the American flag.

The crossed arrows below the shield represent non-aggression, but imply readiness against attack. The laurel branches around, taken from Greek tradition, symbolise victory. Above the shield is a decorative cross.

Around above, the national motto IN GOD WE TRUST; below the shield, the date of issue: 1882.

Obverse Inscription IN GOD WE TRUST 1882
Reverse
United States / Five Cents 1882 Shield Nickel - reverse photo

At centre, surrounded by 13 six-pointed stars representing the original 13 states, a large numeral 5 for the value. Around below, the denomination CENTS.

Around above, the legend · UNITED STATES OF AMERICA ·.

There is no mint mark.

Reverse Inscription 5 CENTS · UNITED STATES OF AMERICA ·
EdgeMilledEdge InscriptionNone
Five Cents 1882 Shield Nickel: Known varieties
Variety Proof
Mintage Issued: 3,100 (included in total)
Showing 100 from a total of 214 coins of type: Five Cents
Coin NameMintageSymbol or PortraitLegend
Half Disme 1792 unknown Liberty, Portrait HALF DISME * UNI · STATES OF AMERICA
Half Dime 1794 Flowing Hair 7,756 Eagle ******** LIBERTY ******* 1794
Half Dime 1795 Flowing Hair 78,660 Eagle ******** LIBERTY ******* 1795
Half Dime 1796 Draped Bust 10,230 Liberty, Portrait ******** LIBERTY ******* 1796
Half Dime 1797 Draped Bust 44,527 Liberty, Portrait ******** LIBERTY ******* 1797
Half Dime 1800 Draped Bust 40,000 Liberty, Portrait ******* LIBERTY ****** 1800
Half Dime 1801 Draped Bust 27,760 Liberty, Portrait ******* LIBERTY ****** 1801
Half Dime 1802 Draped Bust 3,060 Liberty, Portrait ******* LIBERTY ****** 1802
Half Dime 1803 Draped Bust 37,850 Liberty, Portrait ******* LIBERTY ****** 1803
Half Dime 1805 Draped Bust 15,600 Liberty, Portrait ******* LIBERTY ****** 1805
Half Dime 1829 Capped Bust 1,230,000 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1829
Half Dime 1830 Capped Bust 1,240,000 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1830
Half Dime 1831 Capped Bust 1,242,700 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1831
Half Dime 1832 Capped Bust 965,000 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1832
Half Dime 1833 Capped Bust 1,370,000 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1833
Half Dime 1834 Capped Bust 1,480,000 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1834
Half Dime 1835 Capped Bust 2,760,000 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1835
Half Dime 1836 Capped Bust 1,900,000 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1836
Half Dime 1837 Capped Bust 871,000 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1837
Half Dime 1837 Seated Liberty 1,405,000 Seated Liberty 1837
Half Dime 1838 Seated Liberty 2,295,000 Seated Liberty ************* 1838
Half Dime 1839 Seated Liberty 2,129,150 Seated Liberty ************* 1839
Half Dime 1840 Seated Liberty 2,279,085 Seated Liberty ************* 1840
Half Dime 1841 Seated Liberty 1,965,000 Seated Liberty ************* 1841
Half Dime 1842 Seated Liberty 1,165,000 Seated Liberty ************* 1842
Half Dime 1843 Seated Liberty 1,165,000 Seated Liberty ************* 1843
Half Dime 1844 Seated Liberty 650,000 Seated Liberty ************* 1844
Half Dime 1845 Seated Liberty 1,564,000 Seated Liberty ************* 1845
Half Dime 1846 Seated Liberty 27,000 Seated Liberty ************* 1846
Half Dime 1847 Seated Liberty 1,274,000 Seated Liberty ************* 1847
Half Dime 1848 Seated Liberty 1,268,000 Seated Liberty ************* 1848
Half Dime 1849 Seated Liberty 1,449,000 Seated Liberty ************* 1849
Half Dime 1850 Seated Liberty 1,645,000 Seated Liberty ************* 1850
Half Dime 1851 Seated Liberty 1,641,000 Seated Liberty ************* 1851
Half Dime 1852 Seated Liberty 1,260,500 Seated Liberty ************* 1852
Half Dime 1853 Seated Liberty 15,705,020 Seated Liberty *************←1853 →
Half Dime 1854 Seated Liberty 7,300,000 Seated Liberty *************←1854 →
Half Dime 1855 Seated Liberty 2,350,000 Seated Liberty *************←1855 →
Half Dime 1856 Seated Liberty 5,980,000 Seated Liberty ************* 1856
Half Dime 1857 Seated Liberty 8,660,000 Seated Liberty ************* 1857
Half Dime 1858 Seated Liberty 5,160,300 Seated Liberty ************* 1858
Half Dime 1859 Seated Liberty 900,800 Seated Liberty ************* 1859
Half Dime 1860 Seated Liberty 1,859,000 Seated Liberty UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 1860
Half Dime 1861 Seated Liberty 3,361,000 Seated Liberty UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 1861
Half Dime 1862 Seated Liberty 1,492,550 Seated Liberty UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 1862
Half Dime 1863 Seated Liberty 118,460 Seated Liberty UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 1863
Half Dime 1864 Seated Liberty 138,470 Seated Liberty UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 1864
Half Dime 1865 Seated Liberty 133,500 Seated Liberty UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 1865
Half Dime 1866 Seated Liberty 130,725 Seated Liberty UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 1866
Five Cents 1866 Shield Nickel 14,743,100 Shield of the Coat of Arms IN GOD WE TRUST 1866
Half Dime 1867 Seated Liberty 128,625 Seated Liberty UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 1867
Five Cents 1867 Shield Nickel 30,910,125 Shield of the Coat of Arms IN GOD WE TRUST 1867
Half Dime 1868 Seated Liberty 369,200 Seated Liberty UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 1868
Five Cents 1868 Shield Nickel 28,817,600 Shield of the Coat of Arms IN GOD WE TRUST 1868
Half Dime 1869 Seated Liberty 438,600 Seated Liberty UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 1869
Five Cents 1869 Shield Nickel 16,395,600 Shield of the Coat of Arms IN GOD WE TRUST 1869
Half Dime 1870 Seated Liberty 536,001 Seated Liberty UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 1870
Five Cents 1870 Shield Nickel 4,807,000 Shield of the Coat of Arms IN GOD WE TRUST 1870
Half Dime 1871 Seated Liberty 2,034,960 Seated Liberty UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 1871
Five Cents 1871 Shield Nickel 561,960 Shield of the Coat of Arms IN GOD WE TRUST 1871
Half Dime 1872 Seated Liberty 3,784,950 Seated Liberty UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 1872
Five Cents 1872 Shield Nickel 6,036,950 Shield of the Coat of Arms IN GOD WE TRUST 1872
Half Dime 1873 Seated Liberty 1,036,600 Seated Liberty UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 1873
Five Cents 1873 Shield Nickel 4,551,100 Shield of the Coat of Arms IN GOD WE TRUST 1873
Five Cents 1874 Shield Nickel 3,538,700 Shield of the Coat of Arms IN GOD WE TRUST 1874
Five Cents 1875 Shield Nickel 2,097,700 Shield of the Coat of Arms IN GOD WE TRUST 1875
Five Cents 1876 Shield Nickel 2,531,150 Shield of the Coat of Arms IN GOD WE TRUST 1876
Five Cents 1877 Shield Nickel 510 Shield of the Coat of Arms IN GOD WE TRUST 1877
Five Cents 1878 Shield Nickel 2,350 Shield of the Coat of Arms IN GOD WE TRUST 1878
Five Cents 1879 Shield Nickel 29,100 Shield of the Coat of Arms IN GOD WE TRUST 1879
Five Cents 1880 Shield Nickel 19,955 Shield of the Coat of Arms IN GOD WE TRUST 1880
Five Cents 1881 Shield Nickel 72,375 Shield of the Coat of Arms IN GOD WE TRUST 1881
Five Cents 1882 Shield Nickel 11,476,000 Shield of the Coat of Arms IN GOD WE TRUST 1882
Five Cents 1883 Shield Nickel 1,456,919 Shield of the Coat of Arms IN GOD WE TRUST 1883
Five Cents 1883 Liberty Head Nickel 21,512,502 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1883
Five Cents 1884 Liberty Head Nickel 11,273,942 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1884
Five Cents 1885 Liberty Head Nickel 1,476,490 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1885
Five Cents 1886 Liberty Head Nickel 3,330,290 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1886
Five Cents 1887 Liberty Head Nickel 15,263,652 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1887
Five Cents 1888 Liberty Head Nickel 10,172,483 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1888
Five Cents 1889 Liberty Head Nickel 15,881,361 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1889
Five Cents 1890 Liberty Head Nickel 16,259,272 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1890
Five Cents 1891 Liberty Head Nickel 16,834,350 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1891
Five Cents 1892 Liberty Head Nickel 11,699,642 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1892
Five Cents 1893 Liberty Head Nickel 13,370,195 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1893
Five Cents 1894 Liberty Head Nickel 5,413,132 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1894
Five Cents 1895 Liberty Head Nickel 9,979,884 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1895
Five Cents 1896 Liberty Head Nickel 8,842,920 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1896
Five Cents 1897 Liberty Head Nickel 20,428,735 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1897
Five Cents 1898 Liberty Head Nickel 12,532,087 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1898
Five Cents 1899 Liberty Head Nickel 26,029,031 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1899
Five Cents 1900 Liberty Head Nickel 27,255,995 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1900
Five Cents 1901 Liberty Head Nickel 26,480,213 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1901
Five Cents 1902 Liberty Head Nickel 31,489,579 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1902
Five Cents 1903 Liberty Head Nickel 28,006,725 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1903
Five Cents 1904 Liberty Head Nickel 21,404,984 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1904
Five Cents 1905 Liberty Head Nickel 29,827,276 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1905
Five Cents 1906 Liberty Head Nickel 38,613,725 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1906
Five Cents 1907 Liberty Head Nickel 39,214,800 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1907
Five Cents 1908 Liberty Head Nickel 22,686,177 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1908
Showing 1 to 100 of 214 Coins.
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Five Cents 1882 Shield Nickel: Details
CountryUnited States
CurrencyUS Dollar
Coin TypeFive Cents, Shield Nickel
Issued1882
SymbolShield of the Coat of Arms of the United States
Face Value5 (x Cent)
Circulation Mintage11,472,900 (11.5 million)
Total Mintage11,476,000 (11.5 million)
CurrentYes
MaterialCuproNickel
DesignerJames Barton Longacre
TechnologyMilled (machine-made)
ShapeRound
OrientationCoin Alignment (Axis 6)
Size20.500 mm
Thickness1.950 mm
Mass5.000 g
OCC IDBYNK-EDDC-GXAZ-EPQM
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Five Cents 1882 Shield Nickel: Photos
ImageDetails
Coin, United States, Shield Nickel 1882
Copyright: NumisCorner.com
Source
Coin, United States, Shield Nickel 1882
Copyright: NumisCorner.com
Source
Five Cents 1882 Shield Nickel: Catalogue Reference IDs
SourceReference ID
Krause, Standard Catalog of World CoinsUnited States KM# 97