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The History of the Barber Coin and Why Now Is the Time to Purchase

Coins have been minted for centuries, used to purchase goods and services. The coin industry is filled with beautiful works of art and filled history. Many collectors look to invest because of scarcity and artwork. Barber coins are becoming more sought after not only for their rich history, but also for their current pricing. Combined with the artwork, you will see why people are quickly looking at Barber coins.

This article details the history of the coin designed by Charles Barber and why you should look at adding these coins to your collection today.


The Barber coins were minted in the late 1800’s through the early 1900’s. During that time there were dimes, quarters, and half dollars. Originally there was supposed to be a contest to select the winning design. However, due to the lack of entries, compensation issues, and low-quality artwork, Mr. Barber took the lead on design.

With the linage of coin makers coming from London, Barber was the sixth individual tasked with designing the coin. While there were back and forth arguments, the designed was finalized with what we know now. For example, one design feature are the stars. Five pointed stars were more American and stood out from English designs as they used six points stars. Also, five pointed stars are on the American flag.

Current Market

Now, the reason you should be looking at adding Barber coins to your portfolio or collection comes down to price. Supply and demand is there, but people are buying these coins for less.

For example, in 2010 through Heritage Auctions, an 1899 coin sold for a price of $34,500. Fast forward five years later and the same coin sold for $19,975 by the same auction company. In 2020, the same coin was sold for $23,500. According to popular belief, there is no good reason why the price dropped dramatically over a 10-year period.

All that being said, now may be a perfect time add these coins to your collection. With popularity still on the rise but price currently lower than market sentiment, you can potentially get these coins for a discount. If price goes back to the 2010 levels from the last auction, that is a net $10,000 profit and there is plenty of potential to go higher.

Below is a bid table from Greysheet.com.

As you can tell, demand for these coins are strong, but finding the gem mint coins can be difficult. They were widely used and accepted from the very beginning. Regardless, collectors and investors are still looking and purchasing these coins for their artwork and rich history.

It is important to complete your own research, but now may be a good time to look at buying. As more people look for value, it us unlikely prices will remain where they are, and you’ll have to pay market price or even a premium.

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