Is Coin Collecting a Good Investment?

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Collecting coins is an extremely rewarding hobby for many people, but it can also be quite lucrative. If you’re interested in collecting coins as an investment, you should have some level of interest in coins, as this type of investment requires a fair amount of research.

With any investment, it’s important to be aware of the risk involved and what your end goal is. Are you investing money for a specific purpose? How long can you wait for a return on your investment? These are important questions to ask yourself before deciding how you should invest in coins.

Once you’ve decided what kind of investment you’re interested in; you can pick a focus for your collection. There are two common focuses for coin collectors who are looking to make some money from their hobby: bullion value, and numismatic value.

Bullion value is simply the value of the precious metals contained within the coin. So, a one-ounce silver coin’s bullion value equates to what an ounce in silver is worth at any given time. Focusing on the bullion value, you’re really just investing in precious metals. That means it’s important to understand the markets of the specific metals you have in your collection so you can buy bullion in Glenside low and sell high.

Numismatic value, on the other hand, is a bit more complex. According to International Precious Metals, an established U.S. coin dealer, “Numismatic fair market value is determined primarily by the scarcity of the coin, its condition, supply, and demand.” That means you have to have a lot more information about your coins, which takes time to research and can add cost to the initial investment by way of coin grading.

Coin grading is the process of appraising the numismatic worth of a coin based on five categories of its appearance: luster, surface preservation, strike, eye appeal, and coloration ( It costs money to have coins graded, or you can purchase coins for your collection that have already been graded. These coins should come with documentation to prove their grades. Getting your coins graded through a professional coin grading company provides a level of security to potential buyers and allows you to ask for a higher price depending on the grade.

Ultimately, it’s a personal decision whether or not to invest in a coin collection. If you’re already collecting, consider looking into what your current collection is worth, or visit a coin shop in Flourtown to get a value. From there, you can use your interests and investment goals to decide whether coin collecting as an investment is right for you.

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The Different Types Of Seated Liberty Coins

As one of the top coin dealers in Northeast Philadelphia, we can appreciate that the Seated Liberty coinage designs were some of the most beautiful and beloved designs that the United States has ever minted. The design was created by Christian Gobrecht. The coinage feature the Goddess of Liberty seated on the obverse and a more basic description of denomination and decorative wreath on the reverse. The minting of Seated Liberty coins took place from 1836 through 1891. This design was utilized for silver coinage including the half dime, the quarter, the dime, the half dollar, the twenty-cent piece and the dollar coin.

The Silver Dollar

The Seated Liberty silver dollar design was introduced in 1840 and was halted in 1873, a full decade and a half prior to the other denominations. This premature end to the coin was due to the Coinage Act of 1873, which temporarily stopped the minting of the silver dollar for commercial usage. This lull in silver dollars lasted a full five years until 1878 when the production of Morgan Dollar began.

The Half Dollar

The Seated Liberty half dollar was produced from 1839 through 1891, nearly the full duration of the designs lifespan. It was during this minting time frame that the authorized weight of half dollars was reduced, thus leading to the introduction of arrows on either side of the date and rays above the eagle on the reverse of the coin.

The Quarter

The minting of Seated Liberty quarters first began in 1838. There are a number of more scarce dates in this series of coin, especially due to some slowed production periods during the time frame of their mintage. Aside from the handful of notable exceptions, this series is not especially difficult to complete for a dedicated collector.

The Twenty Cent Piece

This is one of the most unique denominations in United States history. While the 20 cent coin was minted for only four short years, those being 1875 to 1878. The last two years of production were a limited run intended for collectors thus effectively making them quite difficult to obtain in high grades. This coin was discontinued due to frequent confusion with a quarter. Both coins were similar size and shared an obverse, meaning it was quite easy to mistake the two.

The Dime

The Seated dime features some of the more desired examples of the design due to a few mint errors that took place during production. After the introduction of arrows and rays to indicate reduced weight coins it was discovered that the Carson City mint had mistakenly forgotten to add arrows to the obverse die for the 1879 dime. This is a highly sought after piece for anyone assembling a collection of Seated Liberty dimes.

The Half Dime

The Seated Liberty half dime was the last of its kind. The Coinage Act of 1873 that led to the cease in production of silver dollars also led to the halt in production of half dimes, though we did not see a return to production like with silver dollars. Some examples minted in New Orleans, as well some dates from the 1860’s are particularly desirable to collectors.

Edelman’s is a full-service coin and stamp store with the largest stock of fine quality coins in the Philadelphia area. If you are looking for coin dealer in the Philadelphia area, visit our website or contact us today.

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The History Of The Large Cent

Many people may not know that for over half a century, the United States had what is known as the large cent running in circulation. The large cent saw many different changes while it was minted but it is still remembered fondly by numismatists to this day.


Between 1793 and 1857, the large cent served as the equivalent of the modern day penny with a face value of 1/100 of a U.S. Dollar. The coin is larger than the typical cent, hence the nickname of the large cent. In fact, these coins are bigger than the quarters used today. The large cent was made of nearly pure copper with no other metals being added.

All large cents were produced within the Philadelphia Mint. They had double the amount of copper as the half cent. The original large cent design that began circulating in 1793 has become known as Flowing Hair cents. A bust of Liberty is featured on one side with the reverse showing a ring of chains. This original design did not go over particularly well because many thought the chains were a reference to slavery. These initial Flowing Hair cents are actually noteworthy because they are the inaugural coins to be printed by the U.S. government on both its own property and equipment.

The short printing span led to only about 35,000 of these coins to be printed. This has made them scarce and a huge collectors item. The original large cents can go anywhere from $2,000 to as much as $50,000, depending on the coin’s condition.

Following the outcry about the chains, the Mint changed the design. The bust of Liberty was changed to allow for even longer hair, while the chains were switched out to include a wreath. Around 63,000 of these coins were printed.

The next design came quickly again and is known today as the Liberty Cap cents. These ran from 1793 to 1796 and featured Liberty facing to the right side with less wild hair and a cap added to symbolize freedom. The other side featured a laurel wreath.

The next design change came in 1796 and remained in effect for another 11 years until 1807 and is known as the Draped Bust design. It featured a bust of Liberty with a ribbon in her hair and outfitted in drapery. An olive wreath was featured on the other side.

Following the Draped Bust era, Classic Head cents were introduced in 1808 and feature Liberty with a fillet on her head. These coins were also made of higher quality copper and remained the standard design until 1814. The higher quality did lead to more corrosion of the coin and thus it is harder to find in mint condition.

The only time that the large cent was not in circulation between 1793 and 1857 was briefly during 1815. This was a result of the war against Great Britain in 1812. The mint halted production of the coin due to the wartime embargo. Once the war was completed, however, the U.S. Mint resumed production of the coin.

The large cent was again redesigned after the war with a larger portrait of a more mature Liberty. This design became known as the Coronet cent. The 1835 redesign reversed course to give Liberty a more youthful appearance.

The final design of the large cent is the Braided Hair design. These coins were printed from 1839 until 1857 and then briefly again in 1868. This design made Liberty more slim and stayed the design until the coin was no longer printed.

If you have old coins lying around, they could be worth more than you think. If you’re looking for a coin appraisal in Fort Washington, PA or the surrounding areas or if you’re looking to sell gold or silver in Glenside, visit Edelman’s Coins to get the strongest prices in the entire Greater Philadelphia area.