In 1938, Felix Schlag designed the new Jefferson Nickel
. His winning design featured a striking ¾ view of Monticello
on the reverse, and a breathtaking Art Deco font
. However the Mint
reject his reverse and changed the font, creating the coin
we know today. When the coin was first up into circulation it did not carry his initials
, although all other coins did being mint then did. In the mid ‘60s the coin magazine, Coin World
began a campaign
to give him the credit
While ‘The great coin shortage of the '60s
’ was under way the mint stopped all produce of proof
coins, and in 1966
when they finally placed his initials on the obverse
’s neck they broke their policy and produced two proof
coins that were given to Mr. Schlag. To the best of my knowledge they have never appeared for public sale.
With a little effort one can assemble a complete set of Jefferson Nickels from circulation, but the odds of finding a 1950D are next to nothing. When I was young I would search the cash register and coke machine at my fathers store every day and did finally find one, It was the only one that I have ever seen in circulation.
In 1950 the mint at Denver only produced 2,630,000 Nickels the smallest amount ever for any Jefferson Nickel. But the timing was right for things to go every wrong for the mint. In the late ’50 speculators began hording rolls of coins and prices rose to incredible highs, by 1961 it was listed in the redbook for $5.50 (The price of a redbook in 1961 was just $1.00 ) By the end the '60s the price rose to $26.50
One dealer in Milwaukee had 8,000 rolls or 160,000 coins.
Like everything else reason finally took hold and the price stabilized at about $5.00, where it still is at today
This was the coin that the mint used to blame The great coin shortage of the '60s on collectors.