Three-Cent Silver Piece Coins
This coin is the smallest silver coin ever produced by the U.S. Mint. It was authorized by congress March 3, 1851, and is known as the three-cent piece Type 1. The designer of this coin was Chief Engraver James B. Longacre. The design consists of a six-pointed star at the center with the Union shield. The inscription "United States of America" and the date are around the border. The reverse depicts thirteen stars surrounding a C-shaped device with a Roman numeral "III".
Congress hoped that this coin would help sell postage stamps and eliminate the coin shortage.
Though somewhat troublesome, change was now available. These thin, little, insignificant looking coins, called "fish scales" by the public and made fun of in the newspapers, became the savior of American commerce!
Due to minimum availability, we reserve the right to ship dates available.
Composition from 1851-1853: (75% Silver, 25% Copper)
Composition from 1854-1862: (90% Silver, 10% Copper)
Three-Cent Silver Piece Coins: 1851-1862