Which Commemorative Coins Are Worth the Most?

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Commemorative coins can become extremely valuable. Beauty, scarcity, and historical importance can drive the cost of a commemorative coin to thousands, tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands, or even over a million dollars. In this article, Phil's Coins will introduce you to 10 of the most expensive commemorative coins on the market today.

Prices are in U.S. dollars and reflect recent prices in April 2023.

Sacagawea Cheerios Dollar $25,058

The Sacagawea Cheerios Dollar is a great example of how small distinctions in engraving can make huge differences in value for coin collectors. 

In 2000, the U.S. Mint and General Mills sponsored a promotion in which newly minted Lincoln pennies were put in 10,000,000 boxes of Cheerios. General Mills also placed a Sacagawea Dollar (worth $1) in 6,500 boxes of cereal. But coin collectors quickly realized that the Sacagawea dollars put in boxes of Cheerios came from a different dye than was used for other Sacagawea dollars in circulation. The tail feathers on the eagle in the Sacagawea Cheerios dollars were more detailed than the tail feathers on the eagles on the Sacagawea dollars in general circulation.

As a result, any collector who wants a complete set of Sacagawea dollars needs the Sacagawea Cheerios dollar. Phil's Coins can help you find a Sacagawea Cheerios dollar in a desirable grade.

1893 Morgan Silver Dollar $551,550

Millions of Morgan silver dollars were minted between 1878 and 1921, but only 100,000 were minted in 1893—and many of the Morgan silver dollars minted that year were melted down. You sometimes have to pay thousands of dollars to get a Morgan silver dollar of questionable quality on eBay, but Phil's Coins can help you find Morgan silver dollars of unquestionable value. You may have to hold your Morgan silver dollars for a while before they bring over half a million dollars, as an exceptional example of the coin did at auction.

Lincoln Head Copper Penny $2,355,000

How can a penny fetch over $2 million?

During World War II, there was a shortage of copper. In 1943, almost all U.S. pennies were minted from steel.

However, a single batch of Lincoln pennies was accidentally made from copper. Numismatic experts believe that between 20 and 40 of these pennies still exist today. They usually sell for $100,000 to $500,000. One 1943 Lincoln penny sold for $1,750,000, or $2.355 million, when adjusted for inflation in 2023.

1894-S Barber Dime $2,412,000

The U.S. Mint in San Francisco (making coins with the -S designation) is the source of several mysteries. One of them is why it made just 24 Barber dimes in 1894. Maybe the mint just made a few dimes to balance the books. They may have made a gift set for bankers. Whatever the reason for the limited run of this coin, just 9 or 10 examples exist today. an 1894-S Barber dime sold for $1,9750,000 in 2016, which adjusts to $2,412,000 in 2023.

1913 Liberty Head V Nickel $5,262,300

Officially, the U.S. Mint stopped making Liberty Head V Nickels in 1912. However, five Liberty Head V Nickels were made surreptitiously in 1913 (or at least dated 1913), when the Indian head nickel became official coinage. 

Two examples of the 1913 Liberty Head V Nickel are in museums. The other three are in private collections. One collector sold their 1913 Liberty Head V Nickel in 2018 for $4.56 million, which adjusts for inflation to over $5.2 million in 2023.

723 Umayyad Gold Dinar $5,418,000

The Umayyads ruled the entire Islamic world from 660 to 750. They continued to rule Spain until 1031. Thirteen hundred years ago, the caliph ordered the striking of an unknown number of these coins with an inscription that they were made from gold from the mine of the commander of the empire. An example of this historic coinage sold for £3.7 million in 2019.

1343 Edward III Gold Florin $6,816,000

Edward III ruled over England for 50 years, from 1327 to 1377. He restored the monarchy's authority and transformed England into a military power to be reckoned with. During his reign, the crown authorized the minting of a gold florin, given the value of 6 shillings (20 shillings were worth a pound).

Two examples of this coin were found in 1857. Another was unearthed with a metal detector. It has been about 20 years since one of the three 1343 Edward II Gold Florins known to be in existence has been sold, but these coins are estimated to fetch about $6 million at auction today.

2017 Canadian Gold Maple Leaf Approximately $8.5 million

Chances are that you will never find a Canadian Gold Maple Leaf in a coin collector book. It is made from over 220 pounds (100 kilograms) of gold. At 2023 prices, the gold alone in this coin is worth over $6 million. A premium for rarity runs the estimated value of the coin to over $8 million.

The Million Dollar Canadian Gold Maple Leaf coin holds the Guinness Book of World Records title for the world's largest coin. Only six were minted, and only one has sold in the last ten years.

1787 Brasher Doubloon $10,000,000

What would a pirate of the 1780s think of a doubloon that would be worth over 10 million dollars? Created by a neighbor of George Washington named Ephraim Brasher, the 1787 Brasher Doubloon was the first gold coin minted by the U.S. Mint.

Brashear seven of these coins. He only engraved his initials on one. It sold several years ago for nearly $10,000,000.

1794 Flowing Hair Silver Dollar $13,311,850

The U.S. Mint created flowing Hair Silver dollars in 1794 and 1795. The few remaining specimens sell for millions of dollars.

Looking to spend a little more? Consider a coin that should not exist, the 1933 St. Gaudens Double Eagle. valued at $20,212,000. The government seized gold coins during the Great Depression, but very few were confiscated. When it can be found, this gold coin commands the highest price of any coin legally traded today.

Visit us at Phil's Coins about the best value for these and many other coins you will love in your collection! We are happy to answer your questions submitted online.


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