Half-Dimes and Dimes : Liberty Seated Dime : Type 6, Legend Obverse, Arrows at Date

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Obverse of 1874 Arrows Dime Reverse of 1874 Arrows Dime

Q. David Bowers (edited and updated by Mike Sherman): In 1873, the authorized weight of the dime was raised slightly from 38.4 grains to 38.58 grains, the latter figure equaling exactly 2.5 grams. To signify the change, small arrowheads were placed to the left and right of the date on the dime (as well as the quarter and half dollar). Dimes minted in 1873 prior to the change, appear without arrows. The second With Arrows format was employed from the latter part of 1873 and all of 1874. After that time, the weight remained the same but the arrows were discontinued. The design otherwise remained unchanged.

Sufficient quantities of business strikes were made so that any numismatist should have little difficulty locating coins in any grade from Good through AU. Uncirculated pieces are available, but in only about half the quantity of the earlier 1853-55 Arrows type. Survivors of the Proof coinage, which totaled 1,500 coins for the two years, can be found although superb examples are scarce. Within the business strike mintage, the Carson City issues are low mintage, and tough to locate in any grade. They are prohibitively rare in Uncirculated condition.

-- Reprinted with permission from "United States Coins by Design Types - An Action Guide for the Collector and Investor" by Q. David Bowers