1943 Dime Value Guide (“P”, “D”, “S” & Rare Errors)

Jenson Cambell

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Dime

Often, you hear the phrase “Not Worth a Dime” when someone is referring to something worthless. But after 80 years in circulation, the 1943 Dime should surely be worth something, right? And that’s what we are here to establish: the value of the 1943 Dime.

Below, we present an estimation of the value of the 1943 dime at various grades:

1943 Dime Valuation Chart

Coin Grade Mint Variety
1943-P Dime 1943-D Dime 1943-S Dime
Good (G4) $4 $4 $4
Fine (F12) $4 $4 $4
Extremely Fine (XF40) $5 $5 $5
Uncirculated (MS60) $11 $11 $11
Brilliant Uncirculated (MS65) $44 $44 $44

Source: PCGS, 2023

1943 Dime: Historical Background

1943 Dime Value

The 1943 Dime is the 28th iteration of the Mercury Dime or Winged Liberty Head Dime, a coin series that ran from 1916 to 1945. This connection has made it acceptable to refer to the 1943 Dime as the 1943 Mercury Dime or the 1943 Liberty Head Dime.

What most people don’t know is that the Mercury moniker is erroneous because it is not the image of Mercury on the obverse but rather that of Lady Liberty. Because she’s wearing a winged Phrygian cap, many people assume it’s Mercury, the Roman god.

The first reference to the coin series by the moniker “Mercury” can be traced back to a letter to the editor that was published in the January 1917 issue of The Numismatist.

The 1943 Dime was a wartime (WWII) issue and among the last issues in the Mercury Dime series.

1943 Dime: Physical Features

The 1943 Mercury Dime is a silver-colored coin made of silver (90%) and copper (10%). Despite being a wartime issue of the Mercury Dime, its metal composition wasn’t affected by the turmoil in Europe.

A coin like the 1943 Penny switched to steel and nickel planchets after copper and tin fell in short supply. There were no silver shortages and, therefore, no need to alter the coin’s metallic composition.

Below is a highlight of the coin’s key physical attributes:

1943 Dime: Physical Characteristics

Physical Feature Notes
Color Silver
Metallic Composition 90% Silver

10% Copper

Weight 2.5 grams
Diameter 17.91 mm
Edge Reeded (118 reeds)

Obverse Design and Features

1943 Dime obverse feature

To find a design worthy of replacing the Barber Dime, Mint officials cast their nets far and wide. They had open and invite-only competitions to find the right design for the 1916 Dime.

At some point, even Charles Barber (U.S. Mint Chief Engraver at the time) participated. But all these designs were rejected in favor of Adolph Weinman’s Liberty design.

Weinman’s winning design included the following elements in its obverse:

  • A left-facing depiction of a young Lady Liberty is at the center of the obverse; she is wearing a winged Phrygian cap
  • The word “LIBERTY” arches over the Lady Liberty’s head
  • The motto “IN GOD WE TRUST” is on the left side of the coin, just under Lady Liberty’s chin
  • The year of issue “1943” is struck slightly to the right, just under Lady Liberty’s cut-off shoulder
  • A monogram of Adolph Weinman’s initials “WA” is on the right side of the obverse

Since the design debuted on the 1916 Dime, media personalities and reporters pressed Weinman, inquiring who was the model of his design.

Countless times, they asked, and countless times, Weinman declined to answer. All he said was that it was the wife of a lawyer friend of his who lived on the top floor of his Manhattan apartment.

It was until 1966 that Holly Stevens revealed that her mother, Elise Stevens, posed for Weinman. Elsie was the wife of Wallace Stevens, a lawyer and famous poet.

Reverse Design and Features

1943 Dime reverse feature

The reverse was also the handiwork of Adolph Weinman. It included the following characters:

  • A fasces with the axe sticking out on the left side
  • A large olive branch, slightly twisting around the fasces
  • The country of issue, “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,” is arching along the rim on the top half of the coin
  • The denomination “ONE DIME” arches along the lower rim of the coin
  • The mintmark is punched on the lower left side of the coin, adjacent to the branch’s lower tip

A fasces (like the one used on the reverse) is a bound bundle of wooden rods. It may sometimes include an axe, and it was carried by the lictors who accompanied magistrates. A lictor is a bodyguard and attendant of Roman magistrates.

The fasces on the 1943 Dime’s reverse is bound by both horizontal and diagonal bands. Not all 1943 Mercury Dimes were well-struck, affecting the detail on these bands. This led to the “Full Bands” variety of the 1943 Dime. Full Bands depicted adjacent bands as separate entities.

1943 Dime: Varieties and Valuation

The 1943 Dime has three mintmark varieties, which include:

1943-P Dime Value

1943-P Dime Value
1943-P Mercury Dime
  • U.S. Mint: Philadelphia
  • Mintage: 191,710,000
  • Mintmark: None

The Philadelphia Mint had the highest mintage in 1943, striking nearly 200 million 1943-P Dimes. To whip up this large volume, the Philly Mint had to use multiple dies; it’s only a miracle that we don’t have many Double Die Errors in this variety.

While quantity was not an issue, quality was certainly compromised.

Most of the 200 million coins were poorly struck, with only a few Full Band (FB) varieties. These well-struck coins were susceptible to wear due to the low rim of the reverse, further reducing their number. So naturally, the FB 1943-P Dimes will hold more value.

Besides the quality of the strike, the 1943-P Dime’s value is affected by a coin’s condition.

For example, a circulated good condition 1943-P Dime (graded G4) is valued at $4 by PCGS. A brilliant uncirculated 1943-P Dime in MS65 condition is valued at $44 by the same firm.

Below is a highlight of the various grades of 1943-P Dime’s varieties:

1943-P Dime Condition  

Estimated Value

Regular Stuck Full Band
Good (G4) $4
Very Good (G8) $4
Fine (F12) $4
Very Fine (F20) $5
Extremely Fine (XF40) $5
About Uncirculated (AU50) $6
Uncirculated (MS60) $11
Brilliant Uncirculated (MS63) $22 $33
Brilliant Uncirculated (MS65) $44 $62
Brilliant Uncirculated (MS68) $450 $1,250

Source: PCGS, 2023

As you can see, the 1943-P Dime can be as valuable as $1,250 in mint condition. Prices even soar higher for coins in finer condition. A prime example is a 1943-P Dime that was sold at auction at $900.This coin was graded by a brilliant MS66 by PCGS, and it shows. It retains most of its original icy white luster with no visible discoloration on either side.

An even more valuable 1943-P Dime was sold for a jaw-dropping $19,550 on Heritage Actions. This particular coin is tied with two other examples of the 1943-P Dime, Full Band variety. It is graded an almost pristine MS68FB by PCGS.

1943-D Dime Value

1943-D Dime Value
1943-D Mercury Dime
  • U.S. Mint: Denver
  • Mintage: 71,949,000
  • Mintmark: D

The Denver Mint was also busy in 1943, striking nearly 72 million coins. In terms of quality, the Denver Mint performed slightly better than its Philly equivalent.

You’re more likely to find a Full Band 1943-D Dimes than in any other Mintmark variety. But the Full Bands came with a trade-off: the Denver Mint made a lot of Dimes with Repunched Mintmark Errors. In most of the coins, the error is slight and difficult to identify.

According to PCGS, a circulated 1943-D Dime is worth anywhere between $4 to $9, depending on the coin’s condition. You can’t find any uncirculated Full Band 1943-D Dimes because the wear shaves away the detail on the bands.

Mint state (uncirculated) 1943-D Dimes are worth $11 to $1,100, again, depending on the coin’s condition. The finest example of the 1943-D Dime is graded MS68+FB by the PCGS. This coin was currently reserved on Stack’s Bowers at $8,500. This 1943-D Dime is fully-struck with Full Bands.

According to PCGS estimates, an uncirculated 1943-D Dimes can fetch between $15 and $15,000. The prices for MS68+ examples have been dropping in the last two months. In July, PCGS estimated the value of an MS68FB 1943-D Dime at $17,500.

The only MS68+FB that came close to this estimate was a PCGS-graded coin sold for $14,687.50. The coin is noticeably oxidized on its obverse and reverse faces.

The biggest transaction ever made on auction involving 1935-D Dimes with worn bands was an MS68 dime that sold for only $925.

For the value of every coin in between, study the table below:

1943-P Dime Condition  

Estimated Value

Regular Stuck Full Band
Good (G4) $4
Very Good (G8) $4
Fine (F12) $4
Very Fine (F20) $5
Extremely Fine (XF40) $5
About Uncirculated (AU50) $6
Uncirculated (MS60) $11 $15
Brilliant Uncirculated (MS63) $22 $33
Brilliant Uncirculated (MS65) $44 $62
Brilliant Uncirculated (MS68) $1,100 $1,350

Source: PCGS, 2023

1943-S Dime Value

1943-S Dime Value
1943-S Mercury Dime
  • U.S. Mint: San Francisco
  • Mintage: 60,400,000
  • Mintmark: S

The San Francisco Mint struck the least coins in 1943, minting a little more than 60 million coins. Most of these coins were struck with the larger Trumpet Tail S-mintmark from 1942. This variety ended up producing many coins with a Repunched Mintmark Error.

The San Francisco Mint also produced some awesome-looking proof like coins struck by highly polished dies. They resemble proof like coins with their cameo. However, no proof coins were struck in 1943.

Circulated regular-struck (with no Full Bands) 1943-S Mercury Dimes are worth between $4 to $9. Uncirculated dimes of the same variety fetch a little more, with average prices ranging between $11 to $875. The finest grade in this variety is an MS68 dime PCGS valued at $875.

The Full Band variety of the 1943-S Dime is almost always in mint condition with values that range between $30 and $6,500, depending on the coin’s condition. On May 4th, 2022, an MS68FB 1943-S Dime sold for an astonishing $16,800 on Heritage Auctions. The finest proof 1943-S Dime is graded MS67FB PL, and it sold for $1,440.

Below is a highlight of the value of some key grades we didn’t mention.

1943-P Dime Condition  

Estimated Value

Regular Stuck Full Band Full Band Prooflike
Good (G4) $4
Very Good (G8) $4
Fine (F12) $4
Very Fine (F20) $4
Extremely Fine (XF40) $5
About Uncirculated (AU50) $6
Uncirculated (MS60) $11
Brilliant Uncirculated (MS63) $22 $40
Brilliant Uncirculated (MS65) $44 $100 $1,000
Brilliant Uncirculated (MS67) $125 $375 $2,750

Source: PCGS, 2023

1943 Dime: Valuable Error 1943 Dimes

The 1943 Mercury Dime yielded a lot of error coins. The most common among them are Double Die Reverse Errors (DDR) and Repunched Mintmarks (RPM). Below are some valuable error coins in the 1943 Dime family.

1. 1943-S/S Dime with Repunched Mintmark: Sold for $2,820

1943-S Dime with Repunched Mintmark value

The San Francisco mint struck many coins with RPM errors, so much so that it led to the rise of a new variety, the 1943 S/S. This particular coin is well-struck with “Full Bands.” The MS67+ grading also helps propping up the price tag further.

2. 1943-S/S Dime with Repunched Mint Mark (RPM): Sold for $1,645

1943-SS Dime with Repunched Mint Mark (RPM) value

Another 1947-S Dime with the S/S RPM error was sold at Stack’s Bowers for a little over $1,600. This particular coin has a visible doubling of the right side of the edges. It is also certified pretty high, with CAC and PCSG granting an MS67+ grading.

3. 1943-S/S with RPM and Trumpet Tail Mintmark: Sold for $990

1943 SS with RPM and Trumpet Tail Mintmark

Just falling short of the $1,000 mark is a 1943-S Dime with a combination of errors, all involving the mintmark. The coin bears the Trumpet Tail Mintmark, which is repunched. A close examination of the mint mark reveals a visible doubling on the left edges of the coin.

4. 1945-S Dime with Trumpet Tail Mint Mark: Sold for $475

1945-S Dime with Trumpet Tail Mint Mark

The Trumpet S Mintmark came with a leftover die that was used in the 1941 and 1942 coinage. This die was also used in some 1943 Dimes, striking an “S” with sharp serifs. In this particular coin, the serifs are in contact with the body of the S mintmark.

5. 1943-S Dime with Trumpet Tail Mintmark: Sold for $470

1943-S Dime with Trumpet Tail Mintmark

Trailing only by $5 is a PCGS-certified gem with a grading of MS65. Unlike the previous entrant, this example doesn’t show the full horizontal bands. It also has a slight golden patina, adding to the coin’s beauty.

1943 Dime: Is it Worth Collecting

What makes the 1943 Dime a cool find is the number of varieties it offers. Each variety is valuable, with Full Bands being pricey. While they did not release any proof coin in 1943, this coin family contains some equally impressive proof-like coins.

Error coins in this series are cool, with San Francisco producing the most error coins. But the true value is in collecting the finest examples of any variety of the 1943 Dime.

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