Thursday, April 2, 2015

The Elusive 2009 Nickel

Bossy is working on his Coin Collecting badge for Boy Scouts.  For those not familiar with the badge process, there are usually 10-ish requirements for a badge, and include a combination of discussion, knowledge based items, and hands on demonstration.  In order to earn the Eagle rank (way down the line), there are 11 required badges, and you need an additional 10 badges of your choosing; this is a non-Eagle badge.  Badges are not supposed to be "easy" to earn.  They take work.

One of the requirements for this badge  is to collect a set of coins from your birth year (2002) through current.  I still have a question about this requirement, because I am not 100% sure we have done it right; he has a badge day next week, so I will clarify with the badge counselor then.  But in the meantime, he chose to collect nickels.  Why nickels?  Who knows.  That is what he picked.

So he and his sister sorted through my coin jar (a large mason jar), and picked out all the nickels and started pulling out the ones that they needed.  In the end, they were missing 2009, 2012-2015.  So I put out the APB for these coins to all our friends.  If they have a coin jar, we offered to come over and sort through them, and of course "replace" anything we needed.

Enter my BFF's husband.

He is a coin enthusiast.  So of course he thought this was great!  He found 2012-2014 in their coin jar (they live in the midwest, so I can't exactly pop over to do this myself).  Terrific!  Thank you so much!

Now we just need 2009 and 2015.  The 2009 was a bit puzzling....I mean, c'mon....with this many people, NO ONE has a 2009?  I wasn't would show up eventually.  I need to ask at the bank about the 2015.

Meanwhile, BFF's hubby is on vacation this week, and he and his friend went by their favorite coin shop, because I guess that is where all the coin people hang out.  Since he was there, he asked about the 2009 Nickel.


Turns out that in 2009, ONLY 36 million nickels were made.  I guess in currency, this is a low number.  But the shop had a 2009 Proof (uncirculated) nickel.  So he so kindly bought this nickel, for $3.  I giggled; not being in the coin world, I find it interesting that this nickel just went for 60 times its face value.  I offered to pay them back....they laughed at me.

So now we are the proud owners of this nickel (or will be when the package they are sending to Bossy arrives).  He also found a Boy Scout Centennial coin, and a few other things.  And he is including a few newsletters for their local coin collecting club (one of the requirements is to read about coin collecting).  My BFF said she had to find a bigger envelope to fit everything.

Bossy is very excited to get a package in the mail, and we will type up the story for him to bring with him to badge day (while we are practicing re-telling of a story, this skill is still a work in progress).  I am sure the coin badge counselor will get a kick out of it.  And Bossy will send Mr. BFF a thank you note.  :)

I am very glad that we got involved with Scouts.  While there are things that I don't agree with with on a political level, at the core....this has been so good for Bossy.  He is learning so much.  He is socializing.  He is able to separate from us for camping trips.  He has pride in his accomplishments (he is on track to earn at least 2 badges by June....possibly 4!!!  And one is an Eagle badge!). 

In the meantime....if you find a 2015 nickel....let me know.  ;)


  1. Love the Boy Scout program! We -- I mean, my son is working on the Cycling merit badge now, and has several "partials" to finish up. Great opportunity to learn leadership and public speaking skills, too.

    1. He earned vet medicine at the last Court of Honor. He signed off on Pets a few weeks ago, and first aid is at 90%. Now we are working on Coins and Signs, Signals, and Codes.

  2. Believe it or not it was due to the recession at the time, people everywhere started cashing in their coins instead of keeping them in a jar at home... So demand for new coins went down that year.

    Don't forget when it comes to coin collecting you need to have a coin from each mint, for 2009 I believe both the Denver mint and Philadelphia produced nickels that year, not sure about the San Francisco mint I think they only do proofs now. I hate hate coins I make my money trading paper money but have no luck w coins :(


    1. The different mints are one part of what I have to clarify with the counselor. The idea behind the badges is to get good exposure to the subject...not drive yourself crazy. Some of the other requirements for example are to collect any 5 state quarters, and have one of every denomination....which reminds me that we need to get him a dollar coin.

      He could have also collected 50 coins from at least 10 countries. ..but we do t know many people who travel, so that would have been tough.

      Thanks for the explaining the circulation decrease!

  3. that is interesting. You just think a coin is a coin. I can understand why Bossy is excited to receive the package. I think the Scouts are a good thing.

  4. I had just counted a jar of nickels before I read this and knew I saw an American one. Just rechecked and discovered two. One a 1964 a and the other 2006. We will get the odd U.S coin here and there so now I will be keeping an eye out for a 2009 :).

  5. What a cut project for a cute kid!