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Junk Silver Isn’t Really Junk - It's Money

Junk Silver Isn’t Really Junk - It's Money - Idaho Pawn & Gold

Samuel Reading |

Junk Silver Isn’t Really Junk - It's Money

Junk silver coins are by far not junk. Prior to 1965, the United States minted silver coins to be used as money. These coins are common and where used in circulation and have no collector value. They are 90% silver. These "junk silver coins" have no Numismatic value.

What is Numismatic Value?

The numismatic value of a coin is the price you can reasonably expect to receive if you sold the coin. The coin can be circulated, uncirculated, or a proof coin from a collection. The fair market value of the silver coin is based on the fair market value by how scarce the coin is, the condition of the coin, and the demand for the coin. Rare coins for coin collectors bring a higher price than common coins. Coin shops will often deal in buying and selling rare coins for a premium.

So How Do You Know What Your Pre - 1964 Coin is Worth?

Coins minted in the United States prior to 1964 are made up of 90% silver. This significantly impacts the silver coins value. Because of the silver content, there is a difference between the face value and the silver content value. For instance, the 1932-1964 Washington Quarter is a .25 piece. Face value is .25. It has a silver value on todays market of $4.00. pre-1964-us-silver-coins

How To Value an Assortment of Silver Coins Dated 1964 and before?

Silver content in a coin dated prior to 1964 is done by weight and the current market value of silver.


Weigh the coin or coins and calculated the silver value. If you have a 1 Troy Ounce that ounce is worth about $24.00 in today's market. You know that the silver content is 90% silver so the silver value of the coins based on weight and silver content is $21.60. Silver is typically measured in troy ounces. A troy ounce contains approximately 31.1034768 grams of silver. This is higher than the standard ounce which contains 28 grams.

Face Value:

Face value is just that, what is the denomination of the coin and what is it worth. A twenty five cent quarter is worth .25. A ten cent dime has a face value of .10. If you have four quarters each worth .25 then you have a total of $1.00 as the face value of the coins. As a side note $1.00 in coins has the same face value no matter what the silver content is.
  • A 1892-1916 Silver Barber Dimes, 1916-1945 Silver Mercury Dimes and 1946-1964 Silver Roosevelt Dimes all have the same exact weight and silver content.
  • Weight:
  • 2.5 grams
  • A 1892-1916 Silver Barber Quarters, 1916-1930 Silver Standing Liberty Quarters, 1932-1964 Silver Washington Quarters all have the same exact weight and silver content.
  • Weight:
  • 6.25 grams
Half Dollars:
  • A 1892-1915 Silver Barber Half Dollars, 1916-1947 Silver Walking Liberty Half Dollars, 1964 Silver Franklin Half Dollars all have the same exact weight and silver content.
  • *Because of the weight silver, half dollars are a great return on exchanging for the silver value.
  • Weight:
  • 12.5 grams.
Interesting Find ... Notice Anything Unique About the Weights of the Dime, Quarters, and Half Dollars?
One dime weighs 2.5grams. So, five dimes will weigh 2.5x5=12.5grams and equally fifty cents or a half dollars. The weight of 12.5 grams matches the Half Dollar.
Confused? Let's Clear It Up a Bit
This is why the calculations work. These minted coins are not only based on 90% silver but the weights add up just like the denominations.
  • One dollar in coin "Face Value" is equal to 25grams.
  • Exceptions:
  • A 1965-1970 Half Dollar is only 40% silver. A Morgan Dollars and Peace
  • Dollars will weigh 26.73 grams. There are a few other exceptions, but
  • generally, the rule above will apply.
Not everyone knows how to use face value, but coin shops, pawn shops, and coin collectors prefer this method. It is easy and quick math and never fails. Some coin dealers are still willing to calculate the value based on the weight. Gold & Silver In Boise And Nampa ID

How To Get the Most for Your Silver Coins

Know the Value The value of silver coins changes regularly based on spot prices (silver price) and premiums. Spot price is the current price in the marketplace that a coin can be bought or sold for immediate delivery. It is important to remember it changes daily. Premiums is the cost the a pawn shop, coin shop, or online dealer assumes when buying and selling a precious metal like gold, silver, and platinum. All stores who buy and sell silver, gold, valuable coins, and gold and silver bullion have to leave a margin of profit so they remain in business.

What Are the Best Junk Silver Coins to Buy?

There are lots! Remember that all coins minted before 1965 and after 1840 are made up of 90% silver. Dimes, quarters, half dollars, and dollar coins minted for circulation before 1965 are worth considering. Here is a list of all United States 90% silver coins minted for circulation:
  • Barber dimes (1892–1916)
  • Mercury dimes (1916–1945)
  • Roosevelt dimes (1946–1964)
  • Barber quarters (1892–1916)
  • Standing Liberty quarters (1916–1930)
  • Washington quarters (1932–1964)
  • Barber half dollars (1892–1915)
  • Walking Liberty half dollars (1916–1947)
  • Franklin half dollars (1948–1963)
  • Kennedy half dollars (1964)
  • Morgan dollars (1878–1921)
  • Peace dollars (1921–1935)

Collectible Coins

Coin collectors buy and sell collectible numismatic coins. Silver coins can bring an extra premium if they are PCGS or NGC graded. NGC grading was established in 1987 and is the world's leading and largest third-party coin grading service. According to The Numismatic Guaranty Company (NGC) it was founded with a commitment to accurate, consistent and impartial coin grading. Founded in 1986 the Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS) is an American third-party coin grading, authentication, attribution, and encapsulation service. As a solution to authentication and to decrease counterfeiting in the coin industry, PCGS has a PCGS cert verification database.

Coin Grading

Coin grading is one of the most important factors when determining a coin's value. For instance an uncirculated coin, one that has not been used as currency in the marketplace or touched by human hands and has no trace of wear, is worth more than a circulated coin that may have oils, corrosion, and scratches. The condition of a coin can be described as poor to gem uncirculated. Fair, About Good, Good, Very Good, Fine, Very Fine, Extremely Fine, and About Uncirculated fill in the gaps. The grading is done by using a numeric scale developed in the 1940s by Dr. William Sheldon. The scale ranged from 1-70 and has become the standard in the industry. Coin grading is done by coin graders who are impartial and work to authenticate coins and determine it's grade based on the numeric scale. Once a coin is graded it is placed in a tamper resistant holder with a label describing the coin and it's grade. As a coin collector who desires old silver coins, gold and silver coins, silver rounds, rare coins remember to do your research. Private dealers and auctions may not know what they are selling or selling coins that aren't what they say they are. Be cautious. Only a skilled and experienced coin grader can accurately grade a coin.

Find One of These...Smile All the Way to the Bank

The 1943 steel pennies are worth a few bucks but the rare copper version if found bought and sold will put a smile on any coin collector's face. According to a Goggle search, one report suggested that, depending on the condition of it, the 1943 copper penny can be worth anywhere from $60,000 to $85,000. The penny is dated 1943 and has a CC stamp for Carson City.

A Little History

In 1943 all pennies were minted in steel because of copper shortages during World War 2. To help with the war effort by decreasing the use of copper in making pennies, the United States Mint came up with a solution. They decided to use a metallic composite for pennies, the steel penny. It was actually pure zinc. These pennies have oxidized over time and look dark gray or dull. As they were circulated they also began to rust from the moisture they came in contact with. Sometimes the coins would leave rust marks on clothing. US0001-Lincoln-Wheat-1943-D-5746485d5f9b58723d38c685 Today there are about 40 1943 copper alloy pennies in existence, making this a very rare coin. It is assumed that the copper coin blanks of the copper penny were left in the press hopper at the start of minting the 1943 steel pennies. Because these coins are sought after by coin collectors, dates were altered on 1945, 1948, and 1949 pennies to make them appear to be the genuine coin. Some fake coins were found to be 1943 steel pennies with a counterfeit cooper coating. In 1996 a genuine 1943 CC Copper Penny sold for $82,500. One way to quickly determine if a 1943 penny is steel or copper is hold it up to a magnet. Copper doesn't stick to magnets.

Where to Buy, Sell, and Obtain a Collateral Loan on Older Silver Coins

There a collectors, potential buyers, online dealer options, and pawn shops who buy and sell silver coins. Do your homework and research the local dealer in your area.

Consider Using a Local Pawn Shop in Your Area

Unlike online silver buyers, online gold and silver coins buyers, and online bullion buyers, most pawn shops offer in store and online services. Supported by a team of experts, pawn brokers are skilled in examining and appraising silver coins, silver jewelry, gold and silver coins, paper money, old coins, precious metals, sterling silver, and gold and silver bullion you will be offered competitive prices for your valuables. Pawnshops are in the market to buy silver and sell precious metals. They often have an online service that can sell valuable items with shipping costs added so you can get bought items quickly.

Idaho Pawn and Gold

At Idaho Pawn and Gold we have two locations and provide services for the communities of the Treasure Valley. With stores located in Nampa and Boise ID our team are experts in buying and selling precious metals, gold, silver, silver dollars, Kennedy half dollars, gold coins, bullion, scrap silver, and Morgan Silver Rounds and other coins bought through places like JM bullion or another local coin shop. We are considered a trusted local gold buyer and are customers know we can be consulted when they want to sell gold, have significant amounts of silver to put up as collateral for a short term loan, or need the best price they can get to pay off an upcoming bill. We have a significant amount of expertise at our store between the owner Sam Reading, Dillion who has expertise from working in California in the pawn business, and Robbie who knows and loves to work selling gold and silver at a fair price. Other dealers in the area can't match what happens at Idaho Pawn and Gold. Our stores are actively buying valuable items and working with customers on short term loans with easy, doable terms. If you have been looking for a place to establish a trusted relationship with to sell your silver coins look no further. There is no need to type "sell silver coins near me" in your search browser because you are at the right place, Idaho Pawn and Gold. Have you looked recently through that jar you have up by your bed for a Kennedy half dollar or other silver coins and want the highest price you can get for them? Do you have gold or sterling silver just sitting in your drawer and need cash today? We write collateral loans daily so you don't have to lose your items. We will return them to you once the term of your short term loan is paid off.

About Idaho Pawn and Gold

In 2014 Sam Reading opened his first pawn shop, Sam's Locker. It was focused on serving the community of the Treasure Valley. Sam was raised in Idaho with several siblings. His family instilled in him the belief that community is of paramount importance. In his early adult years, Sam chose to serve our country in the U.S Marine Corps. After military service, he continued to serve as a contractor, doing many tours overseas in support of the U.S. war efforts. During that time, getting home to his family and his community became a top priority. Once home, Sam made a decision to go into the pawn industry with his dedication to helping people, and providing stellar service. Since then he has grown his company into Idaho’s premier pawn service. Sam’s passion for pawn stems from his understanding that real community means helping one another, and that’s exactly what sets Idaho Pawn and Gold (Sam’s Locker) apart from other services. For Sam, money and profit will always be prioritized well after making sure his customer’s needs are met, and they are satisfied. Now that Sam’s time in uniform is over, his new mission is to build a legacy of service to his community at home. He loves the Treasure Valley and the people who live and work in the area. Sam is also very dedicated to his fellow veterans and raises money for local veteran’s non-profits. Additionally, Sam has employed (and still employs) several disabled veterans, knowing very well that sometimes veterans thrive best around other veterans. Sam’s brothers and sister in arms will always have a special place in his heart, and in his life. So, when you come down to the shop on Fairview in Boise, ID and see the dollar bills taped to the walls, and the charity jars stationed around the shop, know those things are symbols of Sam’s commitment to his fellow veterans and feel free to participate however you see fit. ESTATE BUYOUTS

Our History

Idaho Pawn & Gold was formed in late 2014 and originally named “Sam’s Locker”. Sam’s desire to pawn didn’t originate from a childhood dream, or a long thought out and formulated business plan. Rather, it came from a variety of goals and desires that came together at the right time, including his persistent dream of becoming a business owner. Sometimes the stars align and things just fall in place. Hard work, and the patience to wait for the right moment made Idaho Pawn & Gold a reality. Sam has always believed that having good intentions in your endeavors is the foundation of living a good life. We all make mistakes; some are greater than others, but how we learn from those mistakes is what shapes our future. He built Idaho Pawn & Gold to reflect this core belief with everything the shop does. Although the shop often deals with people in difficult positions, it is beyond important to do the right thing, keeping both parties’ interests in mind. This belief is the foundation of every transaction and is demonstrated throughout the shop’s entire process. At Idaho Pawn & Gold our goal is to help people through their hardships, not make things more difficult. To that end, we offer as many options as we can to help people find solutions. Our flexibility is one of our greatest assets. We are flexible because we really care. It’s because of these principles that we’ve found a place in our great community, and it’s because of these principles that we believe Idaho Pawn and Gold (Sam’s Locker) is a great place for you to find the solution you are looking for. Welcome to Idaho Pawn and Gold, how may we be of service to you? OCT 5th 2021 - Silver and Gold Lot Idaho Pawn & Gold Nampa / Boise

Our Services

Gold and Silver

We buy gold in Boise, Id and offer lab quality results with our XRF Analyzer. Precious metal scans are FREE. We offer the most % on spot price (market price) in the area. We have state of the art equipment unlike any other gold or pawn store or coin shop in the Boise/Meridian/Nampa Area. By doing so we pay top dollar quickly and on the spot. No Deal is Too Big For Us. We provide free consultations for the value of your precious metals.


When looking to sell diamonds, it is important to remember the 4 C’s; Color, Cut, Clarity and Carat. Those diamonds that rate high in all categories will bring the best price. We have certified GIA gemologists that will inspect and appraise your diamond. We will explain our assessment and discuss the appraisal with you before you sell to us. 159618104_2979946352284763_4545149019130480111_n

Need to Sell Your Valuable Item?

We will look at, appraise, and make you an offer on your valuable items. If we can't take the item we will be honest and tell you up front. Typically our offer is 30-70% of the item’s value. We do comparisons, look at market trends, and consider how fast your item would sell. One thing to keep in mind is that we want to make you the best deal we can, but also must consider pricing that allows us to move your item quickly.

Need a Loan?

Collateral Loan Idaho and Collateral Loan Boise Pawn & Gold offer the best item-backed loans in the area. Our plans are flexible, with a minimum repayment period of 40 days and a maximum repayment period of 10 years. The process is easy and transparent. We are here to help so stop buy.