General Comments About the Availability and the Strike Characteristics of the 1946 through 1964-D Roosevelt Dime.



     Most collectors will have very little difficulty locating date and mintmark examples for their collections.  All commercial issues (those dimes issued for general circulation) are usually available in single or roll quantities.  The exceptions are the lower mintage issues of 1949, 1949-D, 1949-S, 1950-S, 1951-S, and 1952-S which are more difficult to locate, but should not be considered scarce.  A collector should have little trouble locating any of these issues at a decent coin show or a reputable coin shop.  Rolls of all dates and mintmarks should be available at larger regional coin shows and conventions.


     Collectors opting to include proof coins in their collections will find that most coin dealers have many of the 1957 through 1964 issues in stock.  The 1953, 1954, 1955, and 1956 proofs are generally a little more difficult to find, but are not scarce.  The 1950, 1951, and 1952 are the most difficult to locate.  A major coin show is probably the best place to find these earliest proof issues.


     Because Roosevelt dimes are so abundant and specific dates are easily available, the cost of many of these coins is often only slightly higher than the silver value of the coins themselves.  For this reason, most coins found for sale in coin shops and at coin shows are in uncirculated grades.  Almost all circulated Roosevelts are bought and sold as bullion related items with little or no numismatic value.


     As is often the case, mintage figures alone do not determine the rarity or value of coins in the Roosevelt series.  Many low mintage issues, such as those from 1955, are examples of coins which were hoarded in quantity.  As a result of this hoarding, these coins are as plentiful and inexpensive as dates with much higher production figures.


     Mintage figures from 1946 through 1964 are given on the following pages.  In addition to this chronological listing, the yearly mintage figures from 1946 through 1964 ranked from lowest mintage to highest mintage are also provided.





Annual Production Figures for Roosevelt Dimes from

1946 through 1964




1946        255,250,000

1946-D      61,043,500

1946-S       27,900,000


1947        121,520,000

1947-D      46,835,000

1947-S       34,840,000


1948          74,950,000

1948-D      52,841,000

1948-S       35,520,000


1949          30,940,000

1949-D      26,034,000

1949-S       13,510,000


1950          50,130,114  +    51,386 proof

1950-D      46,803,000

1950-S       20,440,000


1951        103,920,102  +    57,500 proof

1951-D      56,529,000

1951-S       31,630,000


1952          99,040,093  +    81,980 proof

1952-D    122,100,000

1952-S       44,419,500


1953          53,490,120  +   128,800 proof

1953-D    136,433,000

1953-S       39,180,000


1954         114,010,203  +   233,300 proof

1954-D     106,397,000

1954-S       22,860,000


1955           12,450,181  +   378,200 proof

1955-D       13,959,000

1955-S        18,510,000


1956         108,640,000  +   669,384 proof

1956-D     108,015,100


1957         160,160,000  + 1,247,952 proof

1957-D     113,354,330


1958           31,910,000  +    875,652 proof

1958-D     136,465,000


1959           85,780,000  +  1,149,291 proof

1959-D     164,919,790


1960           70,390,000  +  1,691,602 proof

1960-D     200,160,400


1961           93,730,000  +  3,028,244 proof

1961-D     209,146,500


1962           72,450,000  +  3,218,019 proof

1962-D     334,948,380


1963         123,650,000  +  3,075,645 proof

1963-D     421,476,530


1964         929,360,000  +  3,950,762 proof

1964-D  1,357,517,180







Annual Production Figures From 1946 through 1964 Ranked

From Lowest Mintage to Highest Mintage



1.    1955           12,450,181  +   378,200 proof

2.    1949-S       13,510,000

3.    1955-D       13,959,000

4.    1955-S       18,510,000

5.    1950-S       20,440,000

6.    1954-S       22,860,000

7.    1949-D      26,034,000

8.    1946-S       27,900,000

9.    1949          30,940,000

10.   1951-S      31,630,000

11.   1958         31,910,000  +   875,652 proof

12.   1947-S      34,840,000

13.   1948-S      35,520,000

14.   1953-S      39,180,000

15.   1947-D      46,835,000

16.   1952-S      44,419,500

17.   1950-D      46,803,000

18.   1950          50,130,114  +    51,386 proof

19.   1948-D      52,841,000

20.   1953          53,490,120  +  128,800 proof

21.   1951-D      56,529,000

22.   1946-D      61,043,500

23.   1960          70,390,000  + 1,691,602 proof

24.   1962          72,450,000  + 3,218,019 proof

25.   1948          74,950,000

26.   1959         85,780,000  + 1,149,291 proof

27.   1961         93,730,000  + 3,028,244 proof

28.   1952          99,040,093  +    81,980 proof

29.   1951        103,920,102  +    57,500 proof

30.   1954-D    106,397,000

31.   1956-D    108,015,100

32.   1956        108,640,000  +   669,384 proof

33.   1957-D    113,354,330

34.   1954        114,010,203  +   233,300 proof

35.   1947        121,520,000

36.   1952-D    122,100,000

37.   1963        123,650,000  + 3,075,645 proof

38.   1953-D    136,433,000

39.   1958-D    136,465,000

40.   1957        160,160,000  + 1,247,952 proof

41.   1959-D    164,919,790

42.   1960-D    200,160,400

43.   1961-D    209,146,500

44.   1946        255,250,000

45.   1962-D    334,948,380

46.   1963-D    421,476,530

47.   1964        929,360,000  + 3,950,762 proof

48    1964-D    1,357,517,180






     Roosevelt dimes are similar to most other coins when strike characteristics are discussed.  Coins struck from new dies will show all details of both obverse and reverse design elements.  Well struck obverse examples will show all hair, ear and facial details and will have sharp, bold letters and numbers.  Reverse details on well struck coins will include split bands on the torch, separate vertical torch lines, all branch and leaf details, and sharp bold letters.  As working dies begin to wear, details become less sharp, may appear "mushy" or often begin to disappear.  Roosevelt obverse dies had a working lifetime of about 150,000 strikes and reverse dies had a lifetime of about 165,000 strikes.  It is not uncommon to find coins which were struck late in the life of a reverse die which exhibit so much loss of detail that portions of flame or entire leaves are missing on BU specimens.


      Many coin grading services now designate Roosevelt dimes as being “full torch” or as having “full split bands”.  Dimes designated as having full split bands must have fully and distinct upper and lower crossbands.  In general, the upper crossbands are usually more fully struck than the lower crossbands on most non-proof issues.  The lower crossbands should be given great scrutiny when searching for, or grading, full split band Roosevelt dimes.  “Full torch” dimes must exhibit separate and distinct vertical lines in the torch itself, as well as meet the requirements of “full split bands”.


     It is well known that all working dies are manufactured at the Philadelphia Mint and shipped to the Denver and San Francisco facilities.  It is an interesting observation that BU coins issued from the San Francisco Mint often appear to have a "milky white", "satiny" or slightly "frosty" appearance.  Although this characteristic is not exclusive to coins issued from the San Francisco Mint, it is certainly one that is observed much more frequently on San Francisco produced coins than on coins issued from the other mints.  This occurrence has been theorized as happening for a variety of reasons by many professional numismatists.  Regardless of the individual theories, all concur on one point.  It is agreed that the cause or causes are "in house" variables that originate at the San Francisco Mint.  Whether this is the result of planchet preparation, production practices of individual mint employees, press striking pressures, or the length of the run of individual dies, this is still a characteristic that collectors will associate with the San Francisco Mint.


     Doubled die varieties can occur for a variety of reasons.  Almost any feature on a coin can exhibit doubling at one time or another.  This doubling is often limited to the few coins produced from a doubled working die.  Doubling may also occur on a great number of coins if a doubled hub was present.  In any case, it is rare for any specific area of doubling ( the "Y" of LIBERTY, the tips of the flame or the date) to occur from one year to the next with any regularity.  As doubled dies are produced from a haphazard series of events, it would seem that no single feature of design should always become doubled.  There is, however, one area on the Roosevelt obverse that will show doubling with great regularity on coins produced at all mints throughout the 1946-1964 series. This is not to say that every coin will exhibit this doubling, only that it can be found throughout the series on coins from all years and from all mints (including proofs).  The area susceptible to this doubling is found at Roosevelt's lips.  The doubling in this area does not appear to be caused by strike doubling (sometimes called machine or ejection doubling).  As suggested by some, it may be caused by routine die polishing and maintenance.  Perhaps after this characteristic has been studied in greater detail, a definitive explanation as to the cause will be established.  As for now, let it suffice to say that the doubling in this area is simply a characteristic of the series.