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Valuable Pocket Change: 7 Coins Worth More Than Face Value

One of the problems with trying to find very rare and very valuable coins is that they are expensive to purchase. Most (all?) of us can’t afford to pay $7 million for a rare coin [3]. You don’t need to rely on vast wealth and luck, though.

While you probably won’t get millions for the following coins, here are 7 coins you might have in your pocket right now (read this, then check!):

  1. 1969-S Lincoln Cent: This penny is fairly rare, since the Mint was all about confiscating them. You have to be careful, though, since there are plenty of counterfeits since it’s possible to get as much as $35,000 for one of the coins. There is clear doubling on the “heads” side of the coin; only the mint mark isn’t doubled. Coins with a doubled mint mark aren’t that valuable.
  2. 1972 Lincoln Cent: This is another penny with a doubled die on the heads side. There is also a little gouge above the D in “UNITED.” You can get right around $500 for this penny, if it is the correct version.
  3. 2004-D Wisconsin State Quarter: Even though this quarter hasn’t shown its staying power in terms of value, if you find a version with an extra leaf on the corn cob on the reverse side of the coin, you might end up with $200 or more. The mistake has a high leaf or a low leaf. I’ve been collecting state quarters for fun, so it’s probably time for me to check through my collection to see if I have this version.
  4. 1999 Lincoln Cent: Instead of using the circulation die to strike this penny, the U.S. Mint used a proof die. While you can see the problems in pennies struck in 1998 and 1999, and can get between $5 and $25 for these, you can get $75 or more (up to $600) for the right 1999 version. This penny has a separation between the A and the M in the word “AMERICA.”
  5. 1982 Roosevelt Dime: The more valuable version of this coin can be worth up to $50. If you look closely, you will find that this dime doesn’t have a mint mark.
  6. Presidential Dollar: Presidential dollar coins have been in circulation since 2007, and there are various errors on them, including on various presidents’ coins. The problem is with the inscription around the edge of the coin. If the inscription is missing, or if it is doubled, you could see anywhere between $50 and $3,000. Do your research, since some presidents are “worth” more than others.
  7. 1995 Lincoln Cent: Look for doubling on this penny. The words “LIBERTY” and “IN GOD WE TRUST” might be doubled, and, if so, you could get about $20 for one of these coins — and get more if the coin hasn’t be circulated.

Before you take your coins to the bank, or the Coinstar, do yourself a favor and go through your coins. Get a good magnifying glass, and a good book describing different errors on common coins. You might be surprised to find a few coins in your pocket that are more valuable than you thought. Plus it can be fun! Good luck!

(Photo: puuikibeach [4])