Oldest Circulating Coinage

Discussion in 'Coin Chat' started by Kentucky, Jun 30, 2020 at 3:35 PM.

  1. Kentucky

    Kentucky Supporter! Supporter

    We see many postings on CT of people finding Jefferson nickels in the 30's, Buffalo nickels, the occasional V nic, lots of wheaties and other older coins. It raises a question in my head as to what country has the oldest circulating coins...in other words, examining your pocket change, in what country would you find the oldest coins?
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  3. xCoin-Hoarder'92x

    xCoin-Hoarder'92x Well-Known Member

    A couple months ago I found a war-Nickel (forgot the year) 35% silver, and a 1957 silver dime in change back at a grocery store. No V-nickels or indian cents that I have seen in the last several years. Highly unlikely these are found at banks without a clerk swapping the coins out. (My US bank is a block away from coin shop, so I'm sure clerks there know what the interesting coins are)
    Kentucky likes this.
  4. furryfrog02

    furryfrog02 Well-Known Member

    Oldest circulating coin I've found myself is an 1879 Indian Head Cent.
    I think Switzerland has some pretty old circulating coinage since their 20 Rappen has gone virtually unchanged since the late 1800's I believe.

    Here's my 1879 just for fun :)
    22MAY20 1879 IHC.jpg
  5. Collecting Nut

    Collecting Nut Borderline Hoarder

    It was either a shield Nickel or a Indian Head Cent. Too long ago so the dates escape me completely.
  6. xCoin-Hoarder'92x

    xCoin-Hoarder'92x Well-Known Member

    That is mega old for "change". Nothing older than mid or late 1930's has ever showed up in my pocket. ;)

    And my oldest notes in change back have been like 1995 or 1996. lol
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  7. furryfrog02

    furryfrog02 Well-Known Member

    I got a 1918(?) German pfennig once. That was my oldest world coin I've seen in change.
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  8. Kentucky

    Kentucky Supporter! Supporter

    In Germany?
  9. xCoin-Hoarder'92x

    xCoin-Hoarder'92x Well-Known Member

    I've seen Canadian dimes and nickels come up before but not from anywhere else!

    Isn't the 1 Pfennig smaller than a 1 Cent? I can understand if the two denominations are the same size.
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  10. furryfrog02

    furryfrog02 Well-Known Member

    Nope in America :p
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  11. furryfrog02

    furryfrog02 Well-Known Member

    My bad, it was a 10 Pfennig.
    1918 Deutches Reich 10 Pfennig.jpg
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  12. Kentucky

    Kentucky Supporter! Supporter

    I guess the point is almost moot since so many countries have seen massive changes in their coins in the last 100 years, or even 50.
    medoraman likes this.
  13. furryfrog02

    furryfrog02 Well-Known Member

    Like I said, Switzerland's 20 Rappen is probably the best bet for having the oldest circulating stuff since so many other countries have changed currencies and coin designs.
    Bradley Trotter and Kentucky like this.
  14. Rick Stachowski

    Rick Stachowski Well-Known Member

    Here's my oldest change find .
    Searching quarters many years ago .
    A001 - 20150728_193214 (2).jpg A003 - 20150728_193501 (2).jpg
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  15. Inspector43

    Inspector43 72 Year Collector

    Actually, in most banks, clerks (tellers) are not permitted to swap change with their own. some will allow another teller to get change from you and then make a personal swap. A teller at my bank had a young daughter that was excited about buffalo nickels. I offered to give her one. I had to give it to another teller and then she would pass it on the other.
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  16. medoraman

    medoraman Supporter! Supporter

    That is the key. Gresham's Law is a powerful force. I would think US or someplace like Switzerland would be the obvious candidates today.

    In the past, I would hazard it was China. They made cash coins almost the same size for about 2000 years. It is well documented in the late 19th century villagers would dig up cash coins and go spend them, regardless of what it said on them. A few famous collections were assembled in China at "face value" by simply having shopkeepers look for "weird" coins and keep them for the collector.

    In 1968 it was documented you could still find Peroz I drachms from the Sassanid empire, (about 470 AD) in circulation. They spent the same as any other silver coin, since everyone knows the ancient Persians struck good silver coins.
  17. CoinCorgi

    CoinCorgi Derp, derp, derp!

    I'm sure you could find some Medieval coins in Doug's couch cushions from back when @GDJMSP was a reserve knight of the roundish table.

  18. Mike185

    Mike185 Well-Known Member

    I think mine was a 1909 vdb got from change a few months ago at Walmart mart ... 9ABACB73-6BF0-4379-9356-944C67C58B21.jpeg FC31863D-7A7E-4595-B61E-E4DF5D9E15F5.jpeg
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  19. Kentucky

    Kentucky Supporter! Supporter

    He's gonna get you for that...
  20. manny9655

    manny9655 Member

    That's because so many countries change governments at the drop of a hat and demonetize some of their older issues. Some countries change from monarchies to republics, for example. Some change from dictatorships to democracies. Their coins change and the old ones disappear.
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  21. Kentucky

    Kentucky Supporter! Supporter

    And some countries change the monetary unit (Great Britain, most of Europe)
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