Ron Guth: The 1869 Three-Cent Nickel is a common coin, but it is not quite as plentiful as the preceding years. This is due, in large part, to a reduced mintage that is less than half of that of the 1868. Nonetheless, collectors should have an easy time locating a nice Mint State example, particularly in grades MS64 and below. Gems are scarcer, but but even in MS66, PCGS has certified 18 examples. However, none have been certified in grades higher than MS66.
Clashmarks are a common problem on this date. Many examples have a full outline of Liberty's head on the reverse. Otherwise, this date is better-made than preceding years, with most examples showing little or no weakness on the vertical lines on the reverse.