1894-S Barber dime

Dime ($0.10)
United States
Value 0.10 U.S. dollars
Mass 2.50 g
Diameter 17.9 mm (0.705 in)
Thickness 1.35 mm (0.053 in)
Edge reeded
Composition 90% Silver, 10% Copper
Years of minting 1894
Design Lady Liberty with cap and cropped hair
Designer Charles E. Barber
Design date 1892
Design Wreath circling the words "ONE DIME"
Designer Charles E. Barber
Design date 1892

The 1894-S Barber dime is a dime produced in the United States Barber coinage. It is one of the rarest and most highly prized United States coins for collectors, along with the 1804 dollar and the 1913 Liberty Head nickel. One was sold in 2005 for $1.3 million,[1] and another for $1.9 million in 2007.[2] Only 24 were minted, and of those, only nine are known to survive; all nine (as was the entire mintage) were proof coins; two are heavily worn impaired proofs. In 1957, one of the latter was found in a junk coin box at Gimbels Department Store, and purchased for $2.40.


In the first half of 1894, just 24 proofs of the Barber series dimes were manufactured at the San Francisco Mint.[1][2] Why only 24 of the coins were minted is unknown.[1] The superintendent of the San Francisco Mint is said to have had them minted as gifts for some important bankers. Another theory is that the mint's annual audit showed a discrepancy of $2.40, so the dimes were struck to compensate for this.[1][2] Three of the dimes were said to have been given to the superintendent's daughter, who allegedly spent one on a dish of ice cream and sold the other two in the 1950s.[3]


Due to the rarity of the coin and the mysteries surrounding its past, the 1894-S dime is one of the most valuable coins produced in the United States.[4] In the late 1990s, one of the remaining 1894-S dimes was bought for $825,000. Since then they have sold for $1,035,000 in 2005; $1.3 million also in 2005; and $1.9 million in 2007. At a January 7, 2016 auction by Heritage held during the Florida United Numismatists show, the finest known example, graded Proof 66 by Professional Coin Grading Service with a green Certified Acceptance Corp. sticker, sold for $1,997,500.[5][1][2] In August 2019, another coin was sold at a Stacks Bowers Galleries auction in Chicago, Illinois for $1,320,000.[6] The buyer was Dell Loy Hansen, the owner of Major League Soccer team Real Salt Lake.[7]


  1. ^ a b c d e Another sold at auction in Tampa Florida on January 7th 2016 for $1.7 million. "1894-S Barber Dime Sells for $1.3 Million at Auction". Scoop. Retrieved August 1, 2013.
  2. ^ a b c d Rubenstein, Steve (July 26, 2007). "'I didn't eat and I didn't sleep' / Coin dealer flies dime worth $1.9 million to NYC". San Francisco Chronicle. Archived from the original on July 29, 2007. Retrieved August 1, 2007.
  3. ^ Blanchard and Company (21 February 2019). "Why Collectors Dream of Owning an 1894-S Barber Dime". CoinWeek.com. CoinWeek, LLC. Retrieved 21 September 2019.
  4. ^ "PCGS CoinFacts: Your Digital Encyclopedia of U.S. Coins". PCGS.
  5. ^ Roach, Steve (January 12, 2016). "Why is this 1894-S dime worth nearly $2 million? Demystifying the ice cream myth and understanding a rare U.S. coin". LinkedIn.
  6. ^ "1894-S Barber Dime. Branch Mint Proof-63 (PCGS). CAC". Stacks Bowers. Retrieved 2019-08-20.
  7. ^ Williams, David (2019-08-19). "A 125-year-old dime just sold for $1.32 million". CNN Style. Retrieved 2019-08-20.

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