From Dimes to the Stock Market

Griffen Cournoyer My family has owned a plot of land in Manville for several generations, and over time we accumulated a lot of cool antiques, old toys, and storage space. Recently, we rented a dumpster to get rid of trash and roof debris from construction, and discovered several interesting items, one of which was a cigar box of old coins. Needless to say, the box was heavy. After dusting it off and pulling them out, I counted over 500 nickels and over 300 dimes, a lot in change even without looking at the dates. But why would dates be important? On August 10th the price of silver reached $27.25 per ounce, and has remained high. Around the US, those with any silver and gold have been cashing in, but the most common items haven’t been jewelry or materials, but coins. Coins minted prior to 1965 were made with some composition of silver, excluding pennies and nickels, but we’ll get to that later. Dimes made prior to 1965 are 90% silver, and with over 300 of them this could become a quick payday. After sorting dimes from nickels, I was ecstatic. Every single dime and nickel was minted on or prior to 1964, meaning every dime was 90% silver and worth way more than the simple 10¢ or 5¢. I was able to easily sell off all dimes to an eager buyer in Woonsocket for $1.40 per dime, but now I had over 500 nickels worth only 5¢ each. Nickels, apparently, were only made with 35% silver during World War II to save on metal for the war effort, so my entire bag of nickels was worth more as money than as a material. With the price of silver still being high, I encourage you to check dates on your silver coins, some may be worth more than you think! Quarters, dimes and half dollars made before 1965 are made with 90% silver, and with most cash-for-gold places buying them per-piece instead of by weight, your time sorting will be worth the effort, especially if you want to make a quick buck. Even if you have old jewelry you need a bit of encouragement to get rid of, now is the best time with this boom over precious metal.