One of the Rarest Mercury Dimes Ever Made: The 1945-D Mercury Dime w/ Full Band Strike in PCGS 66
The Winged Liberty Head Dime was a 10 cent coin struck by the United States from 1916 to 1945 and is one of the most beautiful coins ever struck by the United States Mint. The image on the coin featured the now iconic Lady Liberty in her winged Phrygian cap, a look so unique that she was mistaken for the Roman God Mercury! As a result of this mix-up these Winged Liberty Head Dimes are now known among collectors as the Mercury Dime.
We have something very special today; while out in California at the Long Beach Coin Expo we came across a few rolls of the final year of issue (1945) Mercury Dimes from the Denver Mint. We sent these beautiful rolls out to be graded and when they came back more than half of these special Dimes were in stunning PCGS MS66 condition!
It gets even better! Not only did they come back in PCGS MS66 condition after more than 70 years, but a small handful of these coins have the elusive "Full Bands" details! That makes these Denver Mint issues some of the RAREST silver Dimes ever made!
The End of the Lady Liberty Era
The Mercury Dime is in unique company in the world of collecting, and not just because it is the Dime with two names! It's also one of the final coins produced by the United States Mint for circulation bearing our iconic Lady Liberty. The 1945 Winged Liberty Head Dime and the 1947 Walking Liberty marked the end of an era for the United States Mint, and as a result they hold a special place in the hearts of all collectors!
A Coin that Truly Stands Above the Rest – PCGS 66 w/ the Elusive Full Bands Strike!
The reverse of the Winged Liberty Head Dime features a fasces, which represents Unity and Strength. The fasces is an ancient roman word for a bundle of rods surrounding an Axe with its blade emerging. It was a symbol used by officers to symbolize their use of the Magistrates power. On this design the first few strikes produced using the coin’s die had a visible and full separation between the two sets of bands crossing the torch. Coins with these "Full Bands" are sought after by collectors as being the highest quality strike you can find! (Similar to the Full Bell Lines for Franklin Half Dollars)
These "Full Band" Mercury Dimes are significantly rarer than their counterparts, and the proof can be found in the mintages! With over 40,245,000 Mercury Dimes produced by the Denver Mint in 1945, you would think that a decent number of these would have survived to today – but you would be very wrong! Only 5,806 are known to exist in PCGS MS66 condition or better with the hard to find "Full Bands" strike! That means just 1 coin is known in this condition for every 6,931 Denver Mint Mercury Dimes made in 1945!