1881 Minor Nickel Set

A uniform set of minor coins was designed by Charles Barber which was to be struck on planchets of 75% copper and 25% nickel. It marks the first attempt at a uniform composition minor coinage set since 1869. It also marks the first appearance of Barber's Liberty head design which was to grace our 5 cent piece from 1883 to 1913.

Sets include the cent J1665/P1865, three cent J1668/P1869 and five cent J1671/P1872 as illustrated below and were struck in nickel (over a dozen), copper (over a dozen) and aluminum (about half a dozen).

Two original nickel sets are in the Smithsonian and a third is in the Connecticut State Library.

Photos courtesy of PCGS.