Type 5, Legend Obverse

Obverse of 1871 Dime
Reverse of 1871 Dime

Q. David Bowers (edited and updated by Mike Sherman): Like the half dime, the dime underwent a design change in 1860. The Liberty Seated motif was retained on the obverse, but the stars were removed, and in their place, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, formerly on the reverse, was added. The reverse wreath was restyled to a larger format, enclosing the denomination expressed as ONE DIME. This style was produced continuously from 1860 thorough 1891. A number of scarce issues were made during that span, including Carson City issues of the early 1870s. Dimes of 1873 and 1874 again appeared with arrowheads flanking the date, this time to signify a slight increase in the weight.

Common dates of the Liberty Seated with Legend dime are readily available in all grades from Good through Uncirculated. Even superb pieces can be located without too much effort. Proofs were struck for collectors and are available for the various Philadelphia Mint issues. Of all Liberty Seated coins in the 1870s through the 1890s more dimes survive, by far, than quarters, half dollars or dollars.

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