Proof Mercury Dimes were only issued for a short period of seven years, from 1936 to 1942. Mintages were fairly high, compared to previous proof coin issues of the late 19th and early 20th century, but low when compared to the later proof coinage of the 1950’s and beyond.
During the brief period of issuance, mintages climbed for each subsequent year of release. The 1936 Proof Mercury Dime was the first and lowest mintage release with 4,130 coins struck. This coin is considered to be the key date for a collection of proofs and commands a premium. During the following years, mintages increased gradually and then sharply, to a peak of 22,329 for the 1942 Proof Mercury Dime.
At this point, proof coin production was halted as a result of World War II and would not resume until 1950. By that time, the Mercury Dime had already been replaced by the Roosevelt Dime.
The seven Proof Mercury Dimes were all stuck at the Philadelphia Mint. The coins were offered individually priced at 20 cents each, or as part of a complete Proof Set containing one example of each denomination priced at $1.89. Since these coins were saved by collectors and dealers from the time of issue, they remain readily available for present day collectors. Examples in grades Proof 67 or higher or which exhibit cameo contrast are rare and command premiums.
Proof Mercury Dime Mintages