35% Silver War Nickel
|Mint Facility:||U.S. Mint|
|Date/Year:||1942 – 1945|
|Quality / Type:||Silver “War Nickel”|
|Purity:||35% Silver, 56% Copper, 9% Manganese|
|Metal Weight:||0.0563 troy ounce|
|Reverse:||Monticello Estate with Mintmark above|
The 35% Silver War Nickel – From Inception to Implementation
During the Second World War, the U.S. removed nickel content from the five-cent Jefferson Nickel coin in order for the nickel metal to be used during the war effort. In fact, nickel proved to be necessary for stainless steel production. And, at the time, nickel was more valuable than Silver.
The U.S. government allowed for up to 50% Silver to be used in the five-cent piece.
However, there was also great concern for counterfeit coins at the time as well. In which vending machines would need to be able to recognize the new coin minus the nickel alloy. Or else machines throughout the country would need to be retrofitted to be able to accept the new coins. Not only through size, but weight as well.
Thus, the mint came up with the 56% Copper, 35% Silver, and 9% Manganese compound to make the War Nickel. In which, vending and other coin-operated machines could detect the coin through size, weight, and magnetic property. As well as placed the Mint mark on the reverse of the coin. Above the Monticello Estate. Thomas Jefferson’s famous estate in Virginia.
Did You Know?
In 2000, an article by Mark Benvenuto published in The Numismatist magazine explained that the change in nickel alloy may have saved as much as 827,163 pounds of nickel during the war. But the amount of saving was actually insignificant. What? Yep. Consider this: 300 million pounds of nickel were produced annually during World War II.
The author speculated that the real reason for the change in composition was more probable to boost the morale of American citizens.
How? By showing Americans that the Mint was doing its part in the war effort by doing without nickel. An influential reminder of the sacrifices needed in order for victory.
Spring Hill Coin Shop
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