Apart from the humble penny, the nickel is the lowest-value coin struck by the U.S. Mint. But did you know that this five-cent coin can be worth thousands of dollars?
Today, we’ll be taking a comprehensive look at the 1958 Jefferson nickel to determine its worth. We’ll examine how coin condition, mint marks, and coin strike type (regular versus proof) impact the 1958 nickel value.
You can utilize this information to purchase and sell 1958 Jefferson nickels at reasonable prices, thus easily improving your coin collection and ensuring you never overspend or undersell your vintage Jefferson nickels.
1958 Jefferson Nickel Value Chart
|1958-P Nickel FS||$74||$292||$2,500|
|1958-D Nickel FS||$13.5||$37.8||$54|
|1958-P Proof Nickel||$24.3||$43.2||$101|
|1958-P Proof Nickel CAM||$68||$182||$325|
|1958-P Proof Nickel DCAM||$1,620||$3,000||$8,500|
1958 Jefferson Nickel: History
Five-cent coins have been a part of U.S. coinage since 1794, but they haven’t always been nickels. In fact, the nickel didn’t get its start until 1866! Before that time, it was called the “half dime” coin.
The introduction of copper-nickel pieces made the silver coins (half dimes) of the same denomination redundant and discontinued in 1873.
The five-cent nickel has enjoyed several versions and alterations over the last few centuries, often changing metal type (like silver to copper) and design with the passing years. But the Jefferson nickel design is the longest-lived of all these incarnations, lasting virtually unaltered for a jaw-dropping 65 years (1938 to 2003).
The 1958 Jefferson nickel looked almost identical to the 1938 Jefferson nickel, with the only major difference being the year date inscribed onto the coin.
1958 Jefferson Nickel: Design
The Jefferson nickel design was submitted to the U.S. Mint by German immigrant and sculptor Felix Schlag. His submission was part of a nationwide competition posed by the U.S. Mint to find the next nickel design.
The previous design for the coin, called the Buffalo nickel, had given U.S. Mint workers quite a lot of grief, as its detailed design made it difficult to produce. When Schlag’s design made it past the eyes of the U.S. Mint executives, they likely breathed a sigh of relief.
By 1938, when the Jefferson nickel design was adopted, the U.S. Mint had already struck two U.S. President-themed coins: the Washington quarter and the Lincoln penny. Seeing a similar-looking design for the nickel, the U.S. Mint quickly adopted Schlag’s design, resulting in the longest-lasting nickel design the U.S. has ever seen!
1958 Jefferson Nickel Obverse
If you look at the front (obverse) side of a 1958 Jefferson nickel, you’ll see:
- The motto “IN GOD WE TRUST” (vertical) on the left-hand side
- The device (raised image) of Thomas Jefferson, facing left toward the motto
- The legend “LIBERTY” (vertical) on the right-hand side
- The year date (1958) displayed vertically beneath the legend, separated from the legend by a single five-point star
1958 Jefferson Nickel Reverse
If you look at the back (reverse) side of a 1958 Jefferson nickel, you’ll see:
- The device (raised image) of Jefferson’s Virginia plantation, Monticello (with “MONTICELLO” displayed beneath it)
- The issuing nation “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” curving upward at the bottom of the coin
- The coin denomination “FIVE CENTS” above the issuing nation and beneath “MONTICELLO”
- The motto “E PLURIBUS UNUM” at the top of the coin, arching downward above the device
1958 Jefferson Nickel: Features and Specifications
All 1958 Jefferson nickels have several shared characteristics regardless of where they were struck or what type of coin they are (regular or proof strike). For example, the 1958 Jefferson nickel:
- Has a smooth (plain) edge
- Is made of 25% nickel and 75% copper
- Weighs 5 grams (about 0.17 ounces)
- Has a diameter of 21.2 millimeters (about 0.83 inches)
Still, 1958 Jefferson nickels vary significantly in terms of value depending on their condition, mint marks, and strike type.
How Much Is a 1958 Jefferson Nickel Worth?
According to the CPG values derived from Greysheet, a 1958 No Mint Mark Jefferson nickel in circulated condition is worth between $0.21 and $0.24. It can be worth $0.25 to $455 or more in uncirculated condition (MS-60 or higher).
1958 Jefferson Nickel: Value Comparison
The U.S. Mint struck about 185 million Jefferson nickels (for circulation) in 1958. The U.S. Mint employed two facilities to produce these coins; the Philadelphia Mint and the Denver Mint.
Additionally, the Philadelphia Mint struck 875,652 proof-strike Jefferson nickels in 1958. About 530,000 of these for-collection coins are believed to survive today.
When attempting to estimate the value of a 1958 Jefferson nickel, it’s crucial to consider the following factors:
- Where the coin was struck (the mint mark)
- The coin’s strike type (regular versus proof)
- The coin’s condition (PCGS or NGC grade)
- The coin’s design elements (Full Step)
Generally, Full Step (FS) Jefferson nickels are more valuable than non-FS nickels. Full Step refers to the number of visible, fully distinct steps on the coin’s reverse side (leading up to Monticello).
Nickels with five to six steps are considered Full Step coins. They’re almost always seen in uncirculated condition (MS-60 grade or higher).
After all, the fine detail of the number of steps leading to the device of Monticello tends to wear away due to heavy circulation. Only coins removed from circulation early (or never entered circulation) show the Full Step design detail.
No Mint Mark 1958 Jefferson nickels can also be more valuable than 1958-D ones, as the Philadelphia Mint struck far fewer for-circulation nickels than the Denver Mint.
Still, let’s break down the value of the 1958 Jefferson nickel by examining each of its major mint varieties. That way, you’ll have an informed understanding of how much your 1958 Jefferson nickels are worth!
1958-P No Mint Mark Jefferson Nickel Value
Nickels struck at Philadelphia Mint are called 1958 No Mint Mark Jefferson nickels (or 1958-P Jefferson nickels). These five-cent coins lack a mint mark on their reverse sides, hence the name! This lack of mint marks makes them particularly easy to identify.
The 1958 No Mint Mark nickel is far scarcer than the 1958-D Jefferson nickel. As such, it’s generally more valuable, especially when found with the Full Step (FS) design.
Regular versions (non-FS) start at about $0.21 (XF-40). In about uncirculated condition (AU-50), they’re worth about $0.22. The most valuable of these nickels are those in uncirculated condition (MS-60).
An MS-60 1958 No Mint Mark Jefferson nickel is worth about $0.25, while an MS-66 one is worth about $455. Overall, a non-FS 1958 No Mint Mark nickel is worth more than a non-FS 1958-D Jefferson nickel.
That said, the Full Step (FS) nickel is worth more.
A Full Step (FS) 1958 No Mint Mark Jefferson nickel is worth about $20.25 in MS-63 condition. With a grade of MS-66, one of these coins can fetch $2,500 or more!
There’s no other regular-strike nickel from 1958 worth quite as much as an FS 1958-P Jefferson nickel in MS-66 or higher condition. So, if you prefer to collect regular-strike pieces, you might want to save up to invest in this coin.
1958-D Jefferson Nickel Value
The Denver Mint led the charge in terms of nickel production in 1958. This U.S. Mint facility produced more than 168 million nickels that year. That’s about 90.8% of all for-circulation nickels struck in 1958.
As you might imagine, this makes the 1958-D Jefferson nickel far more common than its No Mint Mark counterpart, resulting in a lower overall value.
1958-D Jefferson nickels (non-FS) are worth about $0.21 in XF-40 condition and about $0.22 in about uncirculated (AU-50) condition. In uncirculated condition (MS-60 or higher), they’re worth between $0.25 (MS-60) and $650 (MS-67).
For perspective, an MS-66 1958-D Jefferson nickel has an estimated worth of $47.25. That’s only about 10% of the value of a No Mint Mark 1958 nickel of the same grade!
Full Step (FS) 1958-D Jefferson nickels are far rarer than their non-FS counterparts. While it’s thought that about 135 million non-FS 1958-D nickels exist today, there might only be about 225,000 FS 1958-D nickels left (of all coin grades).
The FS 1958-D Jefferson nickel is worth about $13.50 in MS-64 condition and $650 in MS-66 condition. This comparatively lower value stems from the fact that, while the FS version of the 1958-D Jefferson nickel is harder to find than the non-FS version, it’s still more common than the FS 1958 No Mint Mark nickel.
1958-P Proof Jefferson Nickel Value
The 1958-P (No Mint Mark) Proof Jefferson nickel is available in three varieties:
- Proof (non-cameo)
- Deep Cameo (Ultra Cameo)
The non-cameo proof-strike 1958-P Jefferson nickel is the most common of these types, while the Deep Cameo (also called Ultra Cameo) type is the least common.
The values of these proof-strike coins vary depending on their rarity, with Deep Cameo pieces often being worth far more than non-cameo ones. Still, virtually all proof-strike 1958-P Jefferson nickels are in uncirculated condition (PR-60 or higher), as they were struck specifically for collection purposes.
In PR-60 condition, a non-cameo proof-strike 1958-P Jefferson nickel has an estimated value of about $0.40. With a grade of PR-69, this value jumps to $101. Cameo and Deep Cameo pieces can fetch much higher prices.
Cameo (CAM) is an effect almost solely seen on proof-strike coins. It refers to a heightened tonal difference between a proof-strike coin’s background (field) and raised portions.
A CAM 1958-P Proof Jefferson nickel typically has a slightly lighter-toned device and text with a darker field. This two-tone effect is more dramatic in Deep Cameo (DCAM) coins.
A 1958-P Cameo nickel is worth about $47.25 in PR-66 condition. It can be worth $325 (or more) with a grade of PR-69.
Increased rarity and greater aesthetic appeal are the two most significant reasons the 1958-P CAM Proof Jefferson nickel is worth more than the non-cameo version. The same reasons apply to the DCAM 1958-P nickel’s superior value range.
Proof Deep Cameo
A Deep Cameo 1958-P Proof Jefferson nickel has an almost black-and-white look, with a very dark background (field) and lighter, almost “frosted” raised features.
A DCAM 1958-P proof-strike nickel is worth about $1,020 in PR-66 condition. But it can sell for upwards of $8,500 with a grade of PR-69. Across all 1958 Jefferson nickels (regular strike and proof strike), the DCAM Proof is the most valuable.
1958 Jefferson Nickel: Rare Errors
Although the U.S. Mint strives to ensure that all coins struck at its facilities are error-free, accidents occasionally happen. Mint mistakes result in unique error coins, some of which can fetch hundreds (or even thousands) of dollars at auction.
If you’re a coin collector looking to diversify your collection or acquire high-value pieces, you’ll want to keep an eye out for rare error coins. But what kinds of errors should you look for in 1958 Jefferson nickels?
Generally, there are three errors to watch out for:
- The “Inverted D” error (only found on 1958-D nickels)
- The incorrect planchet error
- The off-center error
Let’s delve deeper into these errors to help you identify them and understand how valuable they are.
1958-D Jefferson Nickel Inverted D Error
Only two U.S. Mint facilities struck nickels in 1958; the Philadelphia Mint and the Denver Mint. Of these two, the Denver Mint struck far more nickels, producing about 151 million more regular-strike nickels than the Philadelphia Mint.
But not all of these 1958-D Jefferson nickels were flawless.
Some of the nickels that left the Denver Mint featured an “inverted D” mint mark, which essentially means the “D” mint mark on the coin’s reverse side was upside down (inverted).
You can find the Inverted D 1958-D Jefferson nickel in two varieties, regular and Full Step, just like other regular-strike 1958 nickels. Depending on this error coin’s grade (condition) and design (FS or non-FS), it can sell for between $15 and $1,000.
In 2016, an MS-64 Inverted D 1958-D nickel (non-FS) sold on eBay for $1,295!
1958 Jefferson Nickel Incorrect Planchet Error
Although the Philadelphia Mint didn’t produce as many Jefferson nickels as the Denver Mint in 1958, its nickel production wasn’t entirely error-free. In fact, the Philadelphia Mint produced an astonishing number of incorrect planchet-type nickels that year.
Nickels were struck on a variety of incorrect planchets, from Cuban centavo to silver dime blanks.
Every coin has a specific metal composition, but sometimes the small metal discs (called planchets or blanks) end up between the wrong coin dies. This was certainly the case for quite a few blanks processed at the Philadelphia Mint in 1958.
The incorrect planchet-type error seen in some 1958 No Mint Mark Jefferson nickels can make for quite a valuable coin. In 2010, a silver dime planchet impressed with the Jefferson nickel design sold at auction for $2,357.50. Others have also sold for hundreds or thousands of dollars, making this error coin particularly valuable.
1958 Jefferson Nickel Off-Center Error
Coin planchets must be perfectly aligned between coin dies during the striking process. Otherwise, the impressed design will be off-center, resulting in a coin that still shows some of its original blank faces.
But off-center coins are relatively common (compared to the wide range of potential errors). As such, it’s not too hard to find off-center 1958 Jefferson nickels, although they’re far rarer than non-error nickels.
Some off-center 1958 Jefferson nickels are worth big bucks. Generally, the more off-center the design of one of these coins, the more valuable it is.
A prime example is the 75% off-center 1958-D Jefferson nickel that sold for $373.75 in 2010. Other 1958 Jefferson nickels with lower off-center percentages sell for far less, with some only changing hands for about $20 (depending on the coin grade).
Frequently Asked Questions
Do you have additional questions about the 1958 Jefferson nickel? If so, please check out the frequently asked questions below for more information about this five-cent coin.
How Many 1958 Jefferson Nickels Exist Today?
Approximately 149.05 million 1958 Jefferson nickels (regular strike) exist today. That’s about 80% of the original volume of regular-strike nickels minted in 1958.
What’s the Rarest Type of 1958 Jefferson Nickel?
Based on PCGS coin survival estimates, the rarest type of 1958 Jefferson nickel is the 1958 Proof Deep Cameo Jefferson nickel. It’s thought that only 3,750 of these proof-strike coins exist today.
But when it comes to regular-strike 1958 nickels, the rarest is the FS (Full Step) 1958 No Mint Mark Jefferson nickel. Only about 75,000 of these five-cent coins are around today (out of the more than 17 million struck in 1958).
What’s the Auction Record for the 1958 Jefferson Nickel?
The largest amount of money ever spent at auction for a non-error 1958 Jefferson nickel is $13,513. The coin in question was an MS-66 FS (Full Step) 1958 No Mint Mark Jefferson nickel. This record was set in December 2019.
Although 1958 Jefferson nickels aren’t made of precious metals like silver or gold, they can be worth far more than $0.05. Rare proof versions, like the Deep Cameo 1958-P Jefferson nickel, are particularly valuable.
But the 1958 nickel value isn’t solely reliant on strike type (regular versus proof). Coin condition, rarity, and the Full Step design element significantly impact this five-cent coin’s estimated value.
Check out these related articles to learn more about coin values!