Number Ten: The 1943 “Bronze” Penny. World War Two caused rationing in most areas of American life. The US mint was not exempted from these shortages. During the war most pennies were made from a brass alloy instead of the usual copper. Some, however, were struck from bronze, a copper alloy. The bronze pennies are very rare and worth, if you will “a pretty penny”.
Number Nine: The 1776 Silver Continental Dollar. Soon after declaring independence, Congress decided to mint the first “American” Money. With a design supposedly from Ben Franklin which features 13 interlocking rings for the 13 colonies and a Latin phrase meaning “Mind your own business” a few dozen still exist in pewter, and the silver is ever rarer.
Number Eight: The 1866 “DuPont” Silver Dollar. This coin was struck without the words “In God We Trust” on it. This silver dollar is indeed one of a kind.
Number Seven: Is a three way tie between the 1870-S Half-Dime, 1870-S Silver Dollar and 1870-S Gold $3 coins. These coins were struck in the Old San Francisco Mint before it was closed and a new one was built. Very few coins were made in 1870 and many of them were embedded in the new mint’s cornerstone.
Number Six: The 1974 Aluminum Penny. In the early 1970’s there was a spike in the price of copper. Because of that, the US mint made test models of pennies with alternate materials; including this aluminum model that was sent to a number of VIPs but never returned to the mint.
Number five: The 1861 Confederate States Half-Dollar. Struck from the small supply of silver taken when the New Orleans mint was seized by the Confederate states. Most of these never circulated and only became know after the war when they showed up in private hands as collector items.
Number Four: The 1804 (1834) Draped Bust Dollar. Struck thirty years after the original molds were retired in 1804. They were only eight ever made. Each in now valued at over one million dollars.
Number three: The Brasher Gold Doubloon. Issued by the state of New York in 1787 and 1788 when it was still legal for states to issue currency. Only seven of these coins are known to still exist.
Number two: the 1913 Liberty Head Nickel. The “Liberty Head” model was officially retired in 1912. Only five of these nickels were struck and went to one man, who soon started a rumor about the nickels existing driving up their value.
Number One: The 1933 Saint-Gaudens Double Eagle. In 1933 President Roosevelt ordered all gold coins returned to the mint. About a dozen coins never made it back or were later taken by mint employees. This is one such coin. It is currently valued at seven million dollars.