The Goals of a Coin Collector 4


As an adult coin collector, I have had a few goals. Years ago, I wanted to put together a Franklin Half Dollar collection because I thought it would be simple, and I was right. It took a little time, but I got all 35 half dollars and 1955 to 1963 Philadelphia Halves are mirror like proofs.

Then I wanted to put together a Wartime Jefferson Nickel collection, which comprised of 11 silver nickels between 1942 and 1945.  To make it more interesting, I would get all nickels certified MS-67 which is one of the highest grades you can get for these. I occasionally will find an MS-68, but expect to pay over $1,000 for one in this grade. With MS-70 considered a perfect coin, you can imagine that an MS-67 or 68 coin would be beautiful. I decided to get all the Nickels that were certified by NGC which is a very reliable company. When I got all 11, my friend suggested I include the 1942-P Proof Silver Nickel. So, last November, I went to the New Hampshire coin show to find this Proof in the same grade as all the other, 67. I found 2 in Proof-65 and one in Proof-66. I was considering getting the 66 Proof, but I thought it was priced a little higher than it should be. I kept walking the aisles and when I had been to most of the dealer tables, I finally found a Proof-67 coin, seen here. Patience paid off and now I have a real complete set.

Now, I am attempting to complete my Peace Dollar collection. Between 1998 and 2001, I collected 23 out of the 24 Peace Dollars. Before I could get the last dollar, I was laid off of work. I didn’t start collecting again until 2015. So, my latest goal is to get that last one. Unfortunately, the price for it has increased considerably, but I’m determined to get it in the next few months.

Just like most things you like to do, it’s good to have a set of goals. I remember when my friends and I started to collect in our teens. We all had the Lincoln Cent and Jefferson Nickel blue Whitman folders, and our goal was to fill all of the holes in those folders. The first Lincoln Cent folder went from 1909 – 1940 and the second one from 1941 – 1974. The second folder was easy to do, but the first one, not so much. I was just looking at that folder and am missing a dozen of those early cents. Of course, if I ever got the key date cents like the 1909-S VDB or the 1914-D, I wouldn’t put them in there. My mom had two glass piggy banks, one filled with Lincoln Wheat Cents (pennies between 1909 and 1958) and the other filled with old Jefferson Nickels. That’s where I found most of the cents for the first folder including a 1909-P VDB, and most of the Jefferson Nickels for the first folder from 1938 to 1961. The remainder of the Jefferson Nickels needed I found from time to time in the school lunch money my dad would give me. I used to see a lot of the older nickels from the 1940s and 1950s when I was young, but only occasionally today. I could even find 1938 Jefferson Nickels back then, but not anymore. Whenever I find a silver Jefferson Nickels between 1942 and 1945, I’ve tried to hold on to them.

Do you have any coin collecting goals? Let me know what you’re interested in?

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4 thoughts on “The Goals of a Coin Collector

  • R.J.

    Hey KCorina, very interesting article. I used to collect coins when I was a teen and I found it to be very enjoyable; I used to also want to see what they were worth if I got them appraised. Incidentally, I didn’t know that there were different kinds of coins; I mean I did but nothing too off rare like the Lincoln Cent and Peace Dollar. What do you think a state quarter collection is worth these days?

    What made you become a coin collector, what got you interested? How many more coins do you think exist in the world that is as priceless as the Peace Dollar and how is it different from a regular half dollar?

    I often times have thoughts about trying to find my old state quarter collection, but then I think that I sometimes want to start over from scratch. Your article has inspired me to start up my coin collecting again but this time, go beyond collecting state quarters. I would have to say that if I had a coin goal if and when I got back into coin collecting, it would be to scour the world looking for the rarest coin in existence.

    All in all, your contribution to collecting coins is absolute and very helpful; it made me think seriously about starting up my coin collecting again which was a “priceless” hobby for me back then.

    • Kevin Post author

      Thanks for the comment R.J.! I also started collecting coins as a teen. One day I found blue Whitman folders of Lincoln Cents and Jefferson Nickels in my brother’s drawer. He hadn’t done too much with them. So, I took them. My two best friends were also interested in collecting coins making it more fun.

      I don’t think a state quarter collection is very profitable because it was very popular and a lot of them were minted. The proof and silver proof quarters may make it a little more profitable. I bought a quarter map from the mint when the state quarters first started, just for fun. It took 10 years, but all of the holes in that map are filled. I also have some certified proofs and silver proofs which have gone down in value over the years.

      One thing about Peace Dollars as well as other silver coins is that a lot of them had been melted over the years making their value go up. I thought Peace Dollars would be easier to collect than Morgan Dollars since there were only 24 of them. Morgan Dollars are more popular. I see more of them at coin shows.

      I hope you do start collecting. Come back and let me know how you’re doing.

  • Michael Medlen

    Love the idea of setting goals for a collection.

    I’ve collected coins on an off in the past, mostly as child when my grandma would buy me some for X-Mas and what not.

    I honestly was never genuinely passionate about coin collecting per se, but I still have an avid pursuit of other things I personally collect such as albums and very recent lazer discs.

    But you’re absolutely spot on when you say you have to have goals. While collecting can be fun, in the age of the internet where anything can be bought with the click of a button, you have to have some sort of goal to find what you want.

    For me, this includes getting involved with local collectors and really enjoying the true fun of collecting, which is meeting other collectors!

    Thanks for sharing!

    • Kevin Post author

      Thanks for the comment! That’s nice that you are interested in collecting albums and laser discs. I used to have a lot of albums, but eventually sold half of them. I kept all of my Beatles albums including the original master recordings. Let me know if you ever decide to collect coins again.