Roosevelt Dime Overview
Currently found in production, the Roosevelt Dime has a unique and rich history. First minted in 1946 as a replacement for the Winged Liberty Dime, the Roosevelt Dime has been in production for 71 years.
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After Roosevelt’s death in 1945, Congress called for a new dime design that would honor late President Roosevelt. Chief Engraver John Sinnock created the design that would become the next United States dime. This design featured Roosevelt and other classic designs from previous coins.
On the obverse, a bust of President Roosevelt is centered facing right. The word “LIBERTY” follows the right edge of the coin. “IN GOD WE TRUST” can be found to the right of the bottom of Roosevelt’s neck and the date is located to the left.
The reverse features a torch surrounded by olive branches, which represents liberty and peace. Following along the edge of the reverse are the words “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” and “ONE DIME”. The classic motto, “E PLURIBUS UNUM”, can be found separated by the base of the torch.
If you want to learn more about the Roosevelt Dime and other collectible dimes, be sure to check out our Ultimate Guide to Collectible Dimes!
History of the 1964 Roosevelt Dime
Although no large changes happened during 1964, the date is still a very interesting point in the series. Like the quarter and half dollar coins, 1964 would be the last year that the coin’s composition would be made up of 90% silver and 10% copper.
The change in composition was made as a way to remove silver from America’s coinage, making it cheaper to produce. Despite the high cost, a huge amount of 1964 Roosevelt Dimes were struck.
The Philadelphia Mint reports striking 929,360,000 examples, while the Denver Mint reports mintage figures of 1,357,517,180. This results in a combined 2.2 Billion minted Roosevelt Dimes, which is the largest number of silver-based dimes ever minted in US history.
Straight vs. Pointed Tail Roosevelt Dime
A unique and normally unknown fact about the 1964 Roosevelt Dime is that there are two variations that affect the tail of the “9” in the date. One variation features straight tail, while the other has the tail forming into a point. These differences are due to a slight hub adjustment early in the minting process.
Pointed Tail Roosevelt Dimes were first made in the early part of 1964 before any hub work was completed. A blunt end to the tail of the “9” and a small serif on the “1” are the only parts that had any variances. 1964 Roosevelt Dimes that feature a pointed tail are much rarer than those that have a straight tail.
Straight Tail Roosevelt Dimes are much more common than the pointed variety. This is because more coins were produced after the change in hubs. Interestingly, there is no serif on the “1” like there is in the pointed variety.
Although a somewhat significant variation, no value is added to either coin because of the huge amount that was produced.
Valuing the 1964 Roosevelt Dime
Even though massive numbers were produced, the silver content keeps each 1964 Roosevelt Dime’s value somewhat modest.
At current silver prices, the value of any 1964 dime is at least $1.30. Coins that are graded higher than Extremely Fine 45 carry a higher premium. About Uncirculated examples see a retail value of $1.50.
Only high-grade Uncirculated examples see a huge jump in price. MS-60 and MS-63 examples are both valued at $3, not much higher than silver value. MS-65 sees a slight increase to $11 while MS-66 doubles to $22.
Even having a Full-Bands Designation does not increase the price in a very meaningful way. The reason for the lower prices, even in Uncirculated condition is because of the record amount minted. Due to this high mintage, a huge amount of high-grade coins still exist and are readily available to collectors.