The Winged Liberty "Mercury" Dime
You will find more detailed buying and selling
information on the Mercury Dime and 11 other popular U.S. silver coins in my eBook The Last US 90 Percent Silver
Coins.Don't let the Mercury Dime's size fool you. In 1980, this silver coin could buy a gallon of
gas. It wasn't because gas was so cheap. It was because silver was at an all-time high, reaching $50.00 per
ounce. Some say it is headed that high again. Read on...
The Mercury Dime - A Brief HistoryThe Mercury Dime is "officially" known as
the Winged Liberty Head Dime. The wings crowning Liberty's cap are meant to symbolize liberty of thought. Designed
by Adolph A. Weinman, this popular coin was minted from 1916 through 1945.
A total of three U. S. Mints were involved in the production of Mercury Dimes: Denver; Philadelphia; and, San
Francisco. As with any silver (and gold) coins, some are more valuable than others due in part to low
mintage/scarcity (as well as condition and demand). Here are the...
Five Lowest Minted
1916D - 264,000; 1921D
1921 - 1,230,000;
** Circulated coins in even fair condition may fetch a premium price over spot silver
due to the low mintage (and therefore rarity) of these coins. The 1916D is especially valuable. A circulated 1916D
in just fair condition may be worth several hundred dollars.
The Mercury Dime - More Details
The Mercury Dime features an image of a Winged Liberty Head on the obverse side with a fasces and olive branch on the reverse
(fasces: a bundle of white birch rods
bound together around an ax with the blade projecting, carried before ancient Roman magistrates as an emblem
of authority). The mint mark appears on the reverse, to the left of the fasces. Mint marks are
"D" for Denver and "S" for the San Francisco Mints. If no mint mark appears, it was
minted in Philadelphia.
Mercury Dimes are 90% silver and 10% copper.
Uncirculated coins contain .0723 Troy ounces
of pure silver (2.25 grams) with a gross weight of .08 Troy ounces (2.50 grams). Circulated Mercury Dimes are considered to contain .0715
Troy ounces of pure silver (2.2239 grams) due to the "wear factor" in handling these coins. Circulated silver
coins are sometimes referred to as "junk silver" but
don't believe it.
To determine the silver (melt) value of a circulated Mercury Dime,
multiply the current spot price of silver times .0715.
Example: $20.00 x .0715 = $1.43
Mercury Dimes on eBay
One place to buy Mercury Dimes is at your local coin shop, but don't overlook
eBay auctions. Here you will find circulated coins sold in quantities of one, in small lots or
even entire collections.
If you bid on one or more auctions, keep in mind that approximately 14 dimes
equal one ounce of silver and use that as a guide when bidding on circulated coins. Of course, auctions for
uncirculated Mercury Dimes (MS60 and higher) will fetch a higher price.
For your convenience, I have included a link to current Mercury Dime auctions on
eBay (just click on the Search button). You might be able to pick up some Merc dimes at a decent price. Please be
aware I receive a small compensation if you have a winning bid on coins through this site which does not
result in you paying more.
Disclaimer: I have made every reasonable effort to produce an
informative and helpful article on Mercury Dimes based on my research and experiences. However, I make no
representation or warranties of any kind with regard to its completeness, accuracy or suitability for any specific
situation or purpose. See Terms and Conditions for more info.
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