.Issued for only 18 years (1866-1883), the Shield nickel recalls the days when a typical worker earned about 30¢ an hour, so it’s easy to see this coin had loads of buying power. America’s first nickel makes an interesting addition to any collection.
In 1870, the mintage of the Nickel dropped substantially, but still rang in at nearly 5 million pieces. Though the total population for this date dropped as well, the grade distribution of Mint State examples mimics that of previous years. In other words, MS64 is the most frequently-seen grade, followed by MS63, then MS65. At the top end is MS66, where PCGS has certified a total of ten examples, but none finer.