Ron Guth: In 1887, the Mint produced over 15 million Liberty Head Nickels, reaching the third highest level to date. As a result, the 1887 Nickel is a very common coin in all grades. Hundreds of certified examples exist in each of the MS63, MS64, and MS65 grades. PCGS has certified less than two dozen MS66s, plus a single PCGS MS66+ (illustrated above), and none finer.
The challenge with the 1887 Nickel is finding an example that has all stars fully struck AND a full ear of corn on the back. In most cases, this date has weakness on some or all of the stars, or the ear of corn, or both. Rarely does one find a fully struck example in all of the afore-mentioned areas. It's akin to locating a Full Steps Jefferson Nickel or a Full Bands Mercury Head Dime. Good luck!
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