Seated Liberty Dime

1837 – 1891

The Seated Liberty Dime was designed by Christian Gobrecht and first minted in 1837.

The obverse features Lady Liberty sitting on a rock, in her right hand she holds the Union Shield inscribed with the word “LIBERTY” and in her left hand she holds a long staff.

The reverse side of the 1837 dime is very simple with “One Dime” in the center encircled by a laurel wreath which is tied at the bottom with a bow and the words “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” in an arc along the top.

The 1837 issue was minted in two varieties; Large Date and Small Date. The Small Date variety is a little more rare than the Large Date. The easiest way to differentiate the two varieties is to look at the “3” and “7” in the date.

Seated Liberty Dime

Seated Liberty Dime

Large Date – The number “3” has a pointed looking top and the top of the “7” is straight.

Small Date – The top of the number “3” is rounded and the top of the “7” has a bulge.

During the 55 years of the Seated Liberty Dime’s lifespan the series saw eight design changes. The changes were made in response to economic conditions and the desire to standardize the designs on US silver coins. Note: The Seated Liberty design was used on all US silver coins of the time period.In 1860, the words “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” was removed from the reverse and place on the observe. The laurel wreath was changed to a wreath of oak leaves, corn, maple and wheat and the arrowheads were removed from the obverse. However, in 1873 the arrowheads were once again added to the design.

In 1860, the words “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” was removed from the reverse and place on the observe. The laurel wreath was changed to a wreath of oak leaves, corn, maple and wheat and the arrowheads were removed from the obverse. However, in 1873 the arrowheads were once again added to the design.

In 1838 the coin was modified by the addition of thirteen stars on the reverse; six stars on the right side and seven on the left. In 1853 the coin’s design was modified again. Two arrowheads were added to the obverse, one on each side of the date.

The Seated Liberty Dime is by far the most easily obtained of all the Seated Liberty coins. In a decent grade the prices are somewhat high, but are much more in reach than the quarter, half or dollar.

While there are quite a few dedicated collectors of the Seated Liberty Dime, or Seated Liberty coins in general, most collectors who buy them are interested in type or 19th century coins. Either way, every coin collector should have at least one nice high grade example of this beautiful coin.

Seated Liberty Dime

Seated Liberty Dime

Seated Liberty Dime Specifications:

  • Diameter: 17.9 mm
  • Weight:
    • 1837 – 1852 2.67 g
    • 1853 – 1873 2.49 g
    • 1873 – 1891 2.5 g
  • Composition: 90% silver, 10% copper
  • Edge: Reeded
  • Net Weight:
    • 1837 – 1852 0.08584 oz pure silver
    • 1853 – 1873 0.08584 oz pure silver
    • 1873 – 1891 0.08038 oz pure silver

Tips on Grading a Seated Liberty Dime:

G4 Good: “LIBERTY” on shield is smooth. Date and letters readable.

F12 Fine: Entire word “LIBERTY” visible, but with weak spots.

VF20 Very Fine: Entire word “LIBERTY” strong and even.

EF40 Extremely Fine: “LIBERTY” and scroll edges distinct.

AU50 About Uncirculated: Has traces of light wear on many of the high points. At least half of the mint luster is still present.

MS60 Uncirculated: No trace of wear. May have light blemishes.

MS63 Select Uncirculated: Some distracting contact marks or blemishes in prime focal areas. Luster may be impaired.

Seated Liberty Dime Mintage Numbers:

1837 ………. 682,500
1838-O …… 406,034
1838 ……. 1,992,500
1839 ……. 1,053,115
1839-O …. 1,323,000
1840 ………. 981,500
1840-O …. 1,175,000
1840 ………. 377,500
1841 ……. 1,622,500
1841-O …. 2,007,500
1842 ……. 1,887,500
1842-O …. 2,020,000
1843 ……. 1,370,000
1843-O …… 150,000
1844 ……….. 72,500
1845 ……. 1,755,000
1845-O …… 230,000
1846 ……….. 31,300
1847 ……… 245,000
1848 ……… 451,500
1849 ……… 839,000
1849-O ….. 300,000
1850 …… 1,931,500
1850-O ….. 510,000
1851 …… 1,026,500
1851-O ….. 400,000
1852 …… 1,535,500
1852-O ….. 430,000
1853 No arrows.. 95,000
1853 ….. 12,078,010
1853-O ….. 1,100,000
1854 …….. 4,470,000
1854-O ….. 1,770,000
1855 …….. 2,075,000
1856 …….. 5,780,000
1856-O ….. 1,180,000
1856-S ……… 70,000
1857 ……… 5,580,000
1857-O ….. 1,540,000
1858 …….. 1,540,000
1858-O ……. 290,000
1858-S ……… 60,000
1859 ………. 430,000
1859-O ……. 480,000
1859-S ……… 60,000
1860-S ……. 140,000
1860 ………. 606,000
1860-O …….. 40,000
1861 …….. 1,883,000
1861-S ……. 172,500
1862 ………. 847,000
1862-S ……. 180,750
1863 ………… 14,000
1863-S ……. 157,500
1864 ………… 11,000
1864-S ……. 230,000
1865 ………… 10,000
1865-S ……. 175,000
1866 …………. 8,000
1866-S ……. 135,000
1867 …………. 6,000
1867-S ……. 140,000
1868 ………..464,000
1868-S ……. 260,000
1869 ………..256,000
1869-S ……. 450,000
1870 ………. 470,500
1870-S ……… 50,000
1871 ……….. 906,750
1871-S …….. 320,000
1871-CC …….. 20,100
1872 ……… 2,395,500
1872-S …….. 190,000
1872-CC …….. 35,480
1873 No Arrows … 1,568,000
1873-CC No Arrows … 12,400
1873 ……… 2,377,700
1873-S …….. 455,000
1873-CC …….. 18,791
1874 ……… 2,939,300
1874-S …….. 240,000
1874-CC …….. 10,817
1875 ……. 10,350,000
1875-S …… 9,070,000
1875-CC ….. 4,645,000
1876 …….. 11,460,000
1876-S ….. 10,420,000
1876-CC ….. 8,270,000
1877 ………. 7,310,000
1877-S ……. 2,340,000
1877-CC ….. 7,700,000
1878 ………. 1,677,200
1878-CC ……. 200,000
1879 ………….. 14,000
1880 ………….. 36,000
1881 ………….. 24,000
1882 ………. 3,910,000
1883 ………. 7,674,673
1884 ………. 3,365,505
1884-S ……… 564,969
1885 ………. 2,532,497
1885-S ……….. 43,690
1886 ………. 6,376,684
1886-S ……… 206,524
1887 …….. 11,283,229
1887-S ……. 4,454,450
1888 ………. 5,495,655
1888-S ……. 1,720,000
1889 ………. 7,380,000
1889-S ………. 972,678
1890 ……….. 9,910,951
1890-S …….. 1,423,076
1891 ………. 15,310,000
1891-O …….. 4,540,000
1891-S ……… 3,196,116


Filed under: Dimes,Silver Coins

Comments

3 Responses to “Seated Liberty Dime”
  1. Samantha says:

    I have one of these coins along with some others that I got from the bank as a roll of dimes. Please help with pricing and selling. Thank you.

    • admin says:

      Wow! You mean you actually found a seated dime in a bank roll? That would be an extrememly rare find without a doubt.

      There is no way that anyone could tell you what your coins might be worth without knowing the exact years and mint marks as well as the grade(s) (condition)

  2. Lori says:

    Hmmm, I too have a seated 1887 with an s on the back side…don’t know what mint it represents(san francisco?), but don’t know the value either, any help where I can get true values? I have a variety of old coins ranging from an 1832 .50 cent piece with a c. on it to a 1917 .25 cent piece with an m.

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