General Instructions for
Preparing Your Coin Collection for Appraisal

Appraisal Instructions, Preparing Coins for Appraisal

As a certified coin dealer, PGS Gold & Coin assists you through the entire coin appraisal process and will help you to prepare your coins & currency collection for evaluation

Appraisal Instructions, Preparing Coins for Appraisal

-Coin collection and estate appraisals can be done at various locations including our retail coin shops, a bank vault room, your home, or your attorney’s office. If you are looking to have an appraisal of an extremely large antique coin collection, rare coin appraisal, gold coin appraisal, PGS Gold & Coin recommends the more valuable coin collections and currency valuations should be appraised at a secure location, like any of our safe & convenient retail stores or a safety deposit box room at your bank.


General Tips For Your Coin Collection Appraisal 

  • Don’t waste your valuable time making a list of coins on a spreadsheet. The coins in your collection will be resorted into proper categories and cataloged by the coin experts at PGS Gold & Coin during your numismatic coin appraisal. 
    Use our Coin Collection Sorting Guide to help make coin valuation go smoothly without spending hours making a list of hundreds of different coins.
  • Collection evaluations and coin valuations are done at our retail coin shops, or another secure place that is both well-lit, and features a large flat surface suitable for material sorting. For extensive coin and currency collections, appraisals can be boring and time-consuming. Should you choose not to be present during the coin valuation process, you may drop off materials with a qualified PGS Gold & Coin numismatist, at one of our retail coin shops. Our expert coin appraisers will evaluate your coin collection and other items at your convenience, then contact you for further instructions on how you’d like to proceed.
  • Once a coin value appraisal has been completed, it is best to keep the material organized and labeled until you decide on plans for the collection. Often the choice to sell an antique coin collection requires decisions that include other family members or beneficiaries. The reputable and honest coin appraisers at PGS Gold & Coin understand the nature of these decisions and help you through the process.
  • Proper storage of your coins should be addressed during a coin collection evaluation. Some types of containers & old coin holders can damage the precious contents over extended periods. During the coin valuation process, PGS Gold & Coin will advise you on how to preserve valuable antique coins and old paper money in proper protective containers for short term and long term safekeeping.
Appraisal Instructions, Preparing Coins for Appraisal

The Golden Rule of Coin Collecting:

   You should NEVER “clean” coins in any way! 

How To Prepare Your Collection For A Professional Coin Appraisal

Coins in Coin Albums and Coin Books

Leave coins contained in coin albums or books in place.  Do not attempt to remove coins from their placements. If the collection of coins is contained in 3-ring binders with protective plastic pages, it is best to organize the pages by coin type, using the sorting guidelines below.


Appraisal Instructions, Preparing Coins for Appraisal

Coins in Plastic Holders, Coin Capsules

Leave coins intact for evaluation. 


Coins in Paper Rolls, Plastic Coin Tubes

Leave coins intact for evaluation.


Loose Coins

Organize the loose coins by type/denomination. Bag each different type of coin and label the bag with the quantity.

Use the sorting guide below to organize your coins by type. Take care to contain only one type of coin per bag.



Appraisal Instructions, Preparing Coins for Appraisal


  • Lincoln Memorial Reverse
  • Lincoln Wheat Reverse
  • Indian Head Cents 1880 – 1909
  • Indian Head Cents before 1880
  • Flying Eagle Cents
  • Large Cents 1793 – 1857


  • Two Cent piece 1864 – 1873
  • Three Cent Silver 1851 – 1873
  • Three Cent Nickel 1865 – 1889


  • Jefferson Head
  • Buffalo or Indian Head, Full Date
  • Buffalo or Indian Head, Partial Date
  • Buffalo or Indian Head, No Date
  • Liberty Head or V type
  • Shield Type


  • Roosevelt pre-1965
  • Roosevelt 1965 – current
  • Mercury Dimes or Liberty 
  • Barber Head Dimes or Liberty
  • Liberty Seated Dimes
  • Bust Dimes


  • Washington Quarters pre-1965
  • Washington Quarters 1965 – current
  • Standing Liberty Quarters
  • Barber Quarters
  • Liberty Seated Quarters
  • Bust Quarters


  • Kennedy Half Dollars 1965 – 1970
  • Kennedy Half Dollars pre-1965
  • Franklin Half Dollars
  • Walking Liberty Half Dollars
  • Barber Head Half Dollars
  • Seated Liberty Half Dollars
  • Bust Half Dollars
  • Flowing Hair Half Dollars


  • Eisenhower “Ike” Dollars (large silver-tone coin)
  • Sacagawea and Presidents (smaller gold-tone coins)


  • Liberty Head or Peace Dollars
  • Morgan Dollars
  • Seated Liberty Dollars
  • Bust Dollars
  • Flowing Hair Dollars


  • Copper, Aluminum, and Nickel coins after 1965
  • Copper, Aluminum, and Nickel coins after 1900, but before 1965
  • Copper, Aluminum, and Nickel coins after 1800, but before 1900
  • Silver coins after 1965
  • Silver coins after 1900, but before 1965
  • Silver coins after 1800, but before 1900
  • Coins dated between 1700 and 1800
  • Coins dated before 1700
  • Ancient coins
Appraisal Instructions, Preparing Coins for Appraisal

US Currency, Foreign World Currency, Old Paper Money

Very old paper currency can be fragile, be cautious not to damage edges and corners while handling. Carefully unfold paper currency notes, place them into a rigid, flat envelope. Ensure as few bends or folds as possible, with special care to the edges and corners. 

  1. Separate US currency and foreign currency.
  2. Sort US currency into large and small notes.
  3. Break into groups by denominations $1 $2 $5 $10 $20 $50 $100.
  4. Put in order by year, within each denomination group.


Foreign Coins, World Coin Proof sets, Mint sets

Leave coins intact within the original packaging. Retain all small paper cards included with sets. All original material should remain included and intact with each set.  


US Proof sets, US Mint sets, Commemorative Coin Sets

Leave coins intact within original packaging & material. Organize sets by year.


Miscellaneous Coins, Tokens, Medals

Sort and organize miscellaneous coins by type for easier evaluation. Some types you may find are military medals/pins, sales tax tokens, souvenir tokens, casino tokens, gaming arcade tokens, to name a few.


Unidentified Items

Place any unidentified items you have into a separate bag to be assessed during your coin collection appraisal by a numismatic expert from PGS Gold & Coin.


Have you ever wondered…

Where do I find a place to have my coins appraised? Where is a coin appraisal shop near me? Who do I trust for a gold coin appraisal? Where can I take my coins for an antique coin appraisal? Is there a local coin dealer in my area? Where are the local coin appraisers near me? Where do I find a coin shop for getting my coins appraised? Where are the best coin appraisal shops near me? Which coin shop do I call for silver dollar appraisals? Which coin shop do I call for antique coin appraisals? Which coin dealer do I call for a gold coin appraisal? Which coin dealer do I call for old paper money appraisals? 

For more information about selling a coin collection, Call your trusted local numismatist PGS Gold & Coin (888) 416-2701.

PGS Gold & Coin retail stores are conveniently located near Illinois, in the Chicago suburbs. Click here for a list of our locations. Palatine (847) 348-6447, Wheaton (630) 868-3412, Schaumburg (847) 278-7691, and Villa Park (331) 209-9854

Appraisal Instructions, Preparing Coins for Appraisal
Appraisal Instructions, Preparing Coins for Appraisal
Appraisal Instructions, Preparing Coins for Appraisal
Main Office: 830 W. Northwest Highway, Suite 7, Palatine, Illinois 60067, USA •  Tel: (847) 348-6447  •  Email: [email protected]

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