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1957 Nickel Error List & Value

Do you wonder whether your 1957 nickel is worth anything? These little 5-cent coins may seem old and worthless but you should hang on to yours as they might be worth hundreds or even thousands of dollars.

The good news is that all Jefferson nickels are worth more than face value. But factors such as the condition, grading, mintmark, and features can increase the coin’s value.

Read on to find out the 1957 nickel value. As you will discover, small features such as the steps on the Monticello can make a big difference in the value of your nickel.

So, let’s get started!

1957 Nickel Value Chart

Mint mark Good Fine Extremely Fine Uncirculated
1957 No Mint mark Nickel Value $0.10 $0.10 $0.10 $480
1957 D Nickel Value $0.10 $0.10 $0.10 $200
1957 Proof Nickel Value $110

1957 Nickel Specifications

  • Category: Jefferson Five Cents
  • Mint: Denver, Philadelphia
  • Mintage: 153,916,900
  • Obverse designer: Felix Schlag
  • Reverse designer: Felix Schlag
  • Composition: Copper-nickel
  • Fineness: 0.35
  • Weight: 5g
  • ASW:0.0563

The Obverse of the 1957 Nickel

The Obverse of the 1957 Nickel
Image: coins

The obverse or top side of the 1957 Jefferson nickel features a left-facing portrait of the third president of the United States of America, Thomas Jefferson. The president faces forward with his hair tied in a low ponytail.

Jefferson was a popular president, making the 1957 5-cent coin a relatively popular collector’s item.

The obverse also features the motto: IN GOD WE TRUST  etched around the left side edge of the coin. The word LIBERTY and the date 1957 are inscribed around the coin’s right edge and are separated by a star.

Felix Schlag, a young coin engraver from Germany who had emigrated to the United States nine years prior, won the competition held by the Mint to design the Jefferson nickels. Schlag designed the coin’s obverse and reverse designs.

The engraver used Jefferson’s portrait, created by the renowned sculptor, Jean-Antoine Houdon, to design the coin’s obverse image.

The Reverse of the 1957 Nickel

The Reverse of the 1957 Nickel

The reverse or back side of the Jefferson nickels features Jefferson’s famous mansion, The Monticello.

Although the mansion is forward facing, it was not always this way since the coin’s inception. Before coin production began, the U.S. Mint asked Schlag to change a few design elements. Schlag’s initial design featured a three-quarters view of Jefferson’s mansion, showing a palm tree in the background.

Mint officials were displeased by the lettering on the coin and the more traditional style. They also disliked what they deemed a palm tree, incorrectly assuming that the president would not grow such a tree.

When Schlag finally changed the design, Monticello’s view was no longer three-quarters. Rather, the design had changed to a head-on, plain-view perspective.

Monticello occupies most of the coin’s face on the reverse. Meanwhile, the E PLURIBUS UNUM motto is spelled around the coin’s top edge.

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The word MONTICELLO is inscribed at the foot of the large mansion. This is followed by the coin’s denomination, FIVE CENT.

Finally, the words UNITED STATES OF AMERICA are etched around the coin’s bottom edge.

The video below will help you learn about the features that make a Jefferson nickel worth money.

1957 Nickel Value and Varieties Guide

There are three varieties of the 1957 Jefferson nickels. We will look at the value of each to determine if your 5-cent coin is worth anything.

Three varieties are:

  • The 1957 P No-mintmark Nickel
  • The 1957 D Nickel
  • The 1957 Proof Nickel

1957 No Mint mark Nickel Value

1957 No Mint mark Nickel Value
Iamge: usacoinbook
  • Type: Jefferson Five Cents
  • Edge: Plain
  • Mint mark: None
  • Place of minting: Philadelphia
  • Year of minting: 1957
  • Face value: $0.05 (Five cent)
  • Price: $0.10 to $0.20 (or more)
  • Quantity produced: 38, 400,000
  • Designer: Felix Schlag
  • Composition: 75% copper, 25% nickel
  • Mass: 5.0 grams
  • Diameter: 21.20 millimeters

In 1957, the Mint in Philadelphia struck an estimated 38,400,000 Jefferson nickels. This is a large number of coins, which means 1957 5-cent coins are still in circulation sixty-six years since they were produced.

The coin’s easy availability suppresses the value of the 1957 no-mintmark nickel. After all, this is not a rare coin; just about any collector can get it anytime.

The 1957 nickels in circulated condition are abundant; they are also pretty worn out and won’t fetch much, especially in lower grades. In the Fine (F) grade, you can buy or sell the coin for as low as $0.10 and $0.15 in About Uncirculated condition (grade 58).

Your coin might be worth more if it is in mint state or uncirculated condition. Finding 1957 nickels in a mint state in higher grades is quite difficult as only a few examples are available in the market. Remember that most of these coins have a poor strike, and only some are physically attractive in the eyes of collectors.

In mint state, a 1957 Jefferson 5-cent coin can be worth as much as $480. According to the Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS), the most expensive 1957 nickel was graded MS67 and was auctioned for $1,550 in 2022.

In numismatics, a subcategory of Jefferson coins is known as Full Steps. The full steps refer to the stairs on Jefferson’s Monticello; coins with visible, well-struck stairs are rare but extremely valuable.

The PCGS records show that one Full Step No-mintmark nickel from 1957 was sold for $4,313 in 2006.

1957 D Nickel Value

1957 D Nickel Value

  • Type: Jefferson Five Cents
  • Edge: Plain
  • Mint mark: D
  • Place of minting: Denver
  • Year of minting: 1957
  • Face value: $0.05 (Five cent)
  • Price: $0.10 to $0.20 (or more)
  • Quantity produced: 136,828,900
  • Designer: Felix Schlag
  • Composition: 75% copper, 25% nickel
  • Mass: 5.0 grams
  • Diameter: 21.20 millimeters

If your coin has a D on the reverse on the right-hand side of the Monticello, it means that it was struck in Denver. That year, the Denver mint produced a massive 136,828,900 nickels!

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With such a high mintage, the 1957 D nickel value can be quite low. Like the coins minted in Philadelphia, those from Denver have a weak strike, and many have signs of die erosion and cracking, which is common in high-mintage coins.

Finding a 1957 D Jefferson nickel is easy, as many are still circulating. Unless your coin is really good-looking, i.e., shiny with a clear strike and no die marks, it is likely worth more or less the face value. Expect to pay between $0.10 and $0.20 for a 1957 D in a circulated condition.

Given the poor strike of 1957 nickels from Denver, only a few examples exist in mint state (M.S.). Most of these coins are available in grade MS66; any coins graded higher than this are pretty much non-existent or extremely rare.

In uncirculated mint state, you can get your hands on or sell your 1957 D Jefferson nickel for up to $470. A Full Step coin nickel can fetch up to ten times more, with the most expensive one, graded MS66, selling for $4,600.

1957 Proof Nickel Value

1957 Proof Nickel Value
Image: pcgs
  • Type: Jefferson Five Cents
  • Edge: Plain
  • Mint mark: None
  • Place of minting: Philadelphia
  • Year of minting: 1957
  • Face value: $0.05 (Five cents)
  • Price: $0.10 to $0.20 (or more)
  • Quantity produced: 1,247,952
  • Designer: Felix Schlag
  • Composition: 75% copper, 25% nickel
  • Mass: 5.0 grams
  • Diameter: 21.20 millimeters

In addition to the regular strike coin released into circulation, the Philly coin mint also struck proof coins for collectors. The Mint produced a total of 1,242,952 proofs.

Proof coins have a superior strike with cameo and deep cameo frosted surfaces. You will not see scratch marks, die marks, or dents on proof coins; they are very attractive and worth significantly more than regular strike coins.

Many proof nickels from 1957 were hoarded, making finding relatively affordable examples in all grades easy. That said, cameo-quality proofs are rare, and deep or ultra-cameos are extremely rare.

There is a noticeable difference between proof coins in the lower and higher grades. A coin graded PF62 is worth $2, while one at the highest end of the grading scale can fetch up to $110.

Some examples of 1957-proof coins have fetched so much more. According to the PCGS records, one proof nickel graded PF69 sold for $2,450 in 2019.

A 1957 nickel cameo proof graded PF68 was auctioned for $2990 in 2008, while a deep cameo in the same grade was sold for a whopping $7,475.

1957 Nickel Grading

The condition of 1957 nickels varies greatly—some are generally well-struck, but most are poorly done, creating a big difference between lower and higher grades coins.

The Full Steps feature can also drastically change the coin’s value, but you need to know what to look for to determine if yours has full steps that can fetch a premium price.

When it comes to proofs, having a regular proof, cameo, or deep cameo quality coin makes a big difference. While a regular proof can earn you a few dollars, a deep cameo 1957 nickel can be worth thousands of dollars.

Check out the video below to help you learn more about Full Step Jefferson nickels, cameo and deep cameo proofs, and what to look for to find out if your coin might be worth more than face value.

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1957 Nickel Errors

Errors happen during the minting process, making a few coins look different from the rest in the series.

There are a few notable 1957 nickel error coins, typically worth more than face value. If you have a different-looking Jefferson nickel, you should bring it to a professional coin-grading service—it might be worth lots of money!

1957 Nickel Quadrupled Die Obverse Error

1957 Nickel Quadrupled Die Obverse
Image: greatcollections

A quadrupled die obverse error happens when the hub that punches the coin design onto the die moves slightly during punching.

This movement results in the design being punched slightly off-angle from the original design, creating two, three, four, or more separate designs on top of the original one.

When this error happens on the top side of the coin, it is known as an obverse error. An example of a 1957 nickel with a quadrupled die obverse error sold for $330 in 2013.

The quadrupling on this particular example can be seen in the word LIBERTY and the coin’s date, 1957. However, the error is subtle, and you may need a coin loupe to see the quadrupling.

1957 Nickel Doubled Die Error

A double die error is one of the most common, so there are likely several examples of 1957 nickels with a doubled die error.

Like the quadrupled die error, the doubled die error occurs when two separate designs at a slightly different angle are transferred to the die and eventually the coin.

You will notice doubling around Jefferson’s eye. Turn the coin over, and the inscription MONTICELLO and the denomination, 5 CENT, will have some doubling too.

Your doubled die 1957 Jefferson nickel error will generally be worth between $20 and $50.

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1957 Nickel Struck on A One-Cent Planchet Error

1957 Nickel Struck on A One-Cent Planchet Error
Image: coins

Rarely do you find a coin struck on the wrong planchet. But, this error happened when a 1957 nickel was struck on a one-cent planchet.

The nickel planchet comprises 75% copper and 25 percent nickel, weighs 5 grams, and measures 21.20mm. On the other hand, the cent nickel weighs 2.5g, is made of 97.5% zinc and 2.5% copper, and measures 19.05mm.

Because of the cent planchet’s smaller diameter, part of the motto E PLURIBUS ENUM is cut off from the nickel. The off-metal nickel error also weighs 3.32g, less than the typical nickel weighing 5g.

1957 Nickel FAQS

Is there a rare 1957 nickel?

1957 nickels are pretty common due to their high mintage. Some rare examples include those with Monticello Full Steps and mint errors, such as the nickel struck on a one-cent planchet. Mint state 1957 nickels are rare, especially those graded MS66 to MS70. That year, nickels generally had a weak strike, making it difficult to find a coin with the Full Step or a shiny one with no dents, cracks, or bag marks.

How do I know if my 1957 nickel is valuable?

Generally, 1957 nickels are only worth a little money. But, your coin might fetch a premium if it is in a shiny mint state with no scratches, dents, or errors, has the Monticello Full Steps, or is a proof coin of cameo or deep cameo contrast quality.

Are 1957 nickels made of silver?

The 1957 nickels do not contain any silver content. Instead, Jefferson nickels are made of 75% copper and 25% nickel, the same material since the coin was first struck in 1938. You might have heard that some nickels contain silver—this is true but only for those struck between 1942 and 1945 during the war. To shore up enough nickel for war efforts, the Mint struck the war nickels using 56% copper, 35% silver, and 9% manganese.

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One Comment

  1. Tonja Serrano says:

    I think I have a nickel on a quarter planchet! I don’t have the money to have it professionally graded right now ☹️

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