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SERIES: Liberty Head Three Cent Nickels 1865-1889
LEVEL: Year, MintMark, & Major Variety

1873 3CN Open 3 (Regular Strike)

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PCGS MS66+

DATE COMPARISON

PCGS MS66
PCGS #:
3740
Diameter:
17.90 millimeters
Designer:
James Barton Longacre
Weight:
1.94 grams
Edge:
Plain
Mintage:
1,173,000
Metal Content:
75% Copper, 25% Nickel
Auction Record:
$10,575 • PCGS MS66 • 4-24-2013 • Heritage
Rarity and Survival Estimates (Explain)
Grades Survival
Estimate 
Numismatic
Rarity 
Relative Rarity
By Type 
Relative Rarity
By Series 
All Grades 1,500 R-4.8 9 / 23 TIE 9 / 23 TIE
60 or Better 125 R-7.7 3 / 23 TIE 3 / 23 TIE
65 or Better 30 R-8.9 3 / 23 3 / 23
Condition Census (Explain) Show more rows
Pos Grade Thumbnail Pedigree and History
1 MS65 PCGS grade
1 MS65 PCGS grade
1 MS65 PCGS grade
1 MS65 PCGS grade  
1 MS65 PCGS grade  
Condition Census (Explain) Show fewer rows
Pos Grade Thumbnail Pedigree and History
1 MS65 PCGS grade
1 MS65 PCGS grade
1 MS65 PCGS grade
1 MS65 PCGS grade  
1 MS65 PCGS grade  
1 MS65 PCGS grade  
1 MS65 PCGS grade  
1 MS65 PCGS grade  
1 MS65 PCGS grade  
1 MS65 PCGS grade  

Ron Guth: The first Three-Cent Nickels of 1873 utilized the same-sized date logotypes as in previous years.  Unfortunately, the small date and the shape of the 3 made it appear, at a quick glance, to be an 8 . Mint officials noticed this discrepancy and changed the shape of the 3 by opening the loops so that it no longer looked like an 8.  By doing so, they created two varieties for the year.

According to the PCGS Population Report, the certified population of the Open 3 variety is just over half that of the Closed 3, which is in line with their original mintages.  Despite this difference, most price guides value them equally.

The finest examples certified by PCGS include over two dozen MS65's, with none finer.