Friday, April 27, 2012

Jefferson Nickel (1938 - present)

The Jefferson Nickel was designed by Felix Schlag, whose creative design displaying the portrait of Thomas Jefferson on the obverse and a corner view of Jefferson’s home, Monticello, on the reverse won him an award of $1,000. The new nickels were first issued in 1938 and showed president Jefferson's bust facing left on the obverse and the front view of Monticello on the reverse. On the obverse the inscriptions were placed differently than on earlier U.S. coins - The motto IN GOD WE TRUST was placed around the left rim, while LIBERTY and the date was around the right rim. On the reverse, E PLURIBUS UNUM stood around the top rim, while the MONTICELLO, FIVE CENTS and UNITED STATES OF AMERICA were inscribed below the building.

Along the years of production, the Jefferson nickel underwent some changes, mostly in the details of Jefferson's hair and ribbon. However, collectors pay more attention to the reverse when it comes to details, especially looking at the steps of Monticello. "Full Steps" nickels command pretty high premiums. Beginning of 1942 until 1945, some Jefferson nickels were made of a different metallic composition and are known as "Wartime Silver Alloy" nickels - 35% silver, 56% copper, and 9% manganese. This change in composition was necessary during the war since nickel was a critical war material needed. A larger mintmark was placed above the dome of Monticello to distinguish them from regular nickels.

The Executive Coin Company is one of the top coin dealers in United States who offers a wide variety of Jefferson Nickels in different grades and condition, certified and graded by PCGS. Our selection includes the 1939-D key date Jefferson nickel as well as Wartime Silver Alloy nickels. We also offer high grade nickels with Almost Full Steps and Jefferson Nickel Proof Rolls. All coins we display are expertly photographed with great care and accuracy to help you make the best choice for your unique collection! Check out our online selection at