What Is A 1965 Quarter Worth Today? | 1965 Quarter Value

What Is A 1965 Quarter Worth Today? | 1965 Quarter Value

What Is A 1965 Quarter Worth Today? | 1965 Quarter Value

February 12, 2024 70389 view(s)

Sometimes, the best way to strike gold is to search for silver instead. For a fun example of this rule, look no further than the 1965 quarter.

This story goes back to 1965. That was the year that the U.S. Congress decided to remove all silver content from dimes and quarters. Ever since then, those coins were only struck in copper and nickel.

In the midst of this transition, however, some silver planchets still found their way to the printing machines. It's unknown how many coins were printed this way, but they're some of the best coins to collect out there.

Want to know more about the coin value of the 1965 quarter? Here's why these coins are valuable, what they're worth, and how to find them!


Coinage Act of 1965

Up until 1960, silver coins were still the norm in the United States. Dimes, quarters, half-dollars, and dollars all contained about 90% of silver.

Eventually, silver became too valuable. With the intrinsic value of coins exceeding their face value, supply started to outstrip demand. As a result, the government had to limit the use of silver in coin production.

This decision became official with the Coinage Act of 1965. Instead of silver, the new dimes and quarters featured clad coinage. As such, the composition of these coins changed to:

Outer layer: 25% nickel, 75% copper
Inner layer: 100% copper

With this change, the intrinsic worth of these coins went back below their face value. The U.S. Mint began to strike new coins on July 23, 1965. Soon enough, most silver dimes and quarters were out of circulation.

1965 Quarter Design

Design-wise, the quarter saw no changes in 1965. It was still the Washington quarter, which has been in use since 1932 to the present day.

The original design was the work of sculptor John Flanagan. The obverse contains a bust of George Washington with the motto "IN GOD WE TRUST." The inscription "LIBERTY" is above the bust, with the mint year below.

The reverse features a bald eagle resting on laurels. Above the eagle, you can see the motto "E PLURIBUS UNUM." On the outer rim, there are two inscriptions: "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" and "QUARTER DOLLAR."

Most coins created by the U.S. Mint also receive a mint mark. This is a letter code that identifies which mint created the coin. However, no mint used these effects when creating 1965 quarters.

The Washington quarter was also used for a series of silver of coins called America the Beautiful. These are the largest bullion coins ever issued by the U.S. Mint.


Why Are 1965 Quarters Valuable?

First things first: not all 1965 quarters are valuable. A small percentage of them are, though, as they're what we call transitional error coins.

During the transition to clad coinage, the U.S. Mint made a mistake. Namely, they struck some quarters on silver planchets from the previous year. The error wasn't discovered until the coins were already in circulation.

Like most transitional error coins, these silver 1965 quarters are very valuable. Nobody knows for sure how many of these coins exist, but it's clear they're extremely rare. As such, they're a big hit with coin collectors.

In the past decade, only two 1965 silver quarters have become available for sale. The second one, graded only MS 62 by PCGS, sold for $16,800 in 2020. Owning a better version of this coin could be worth a lot more.

Even if you can't find the silver coin, some 1965 quarters can still be worth investing in. To find out why, let's go over the price chart.


1965 Quarter Price Chart

The price chart for the 1965 quarter relies on the Sheldon Scale system. This system classifies the coins on a numeric 1-70 scale.

In general, all coins graded 60+ on this scale are in mint state. The higher a coin's grade, the higher its value is. The coin with the highest grade (MS 70) has no post-production imperfections at all.

These days, 1965 quarters in circulated conditions are only worth up to $0.85. However, a mint 1965 quarter can be worth as much as $5,250. Here's a list of estimated values for all mint 1965 quarters:

  • MS 60: $1
  • MS 61: $2.50
  • MS 62: $3.50
  • MS 63: $5
  • MS 64: $7.50
  • MS 65: $10
  • MS 66: $35
  • MS 67: $395
  • MS 67+: $975
  • MS 68: $5,250

Do You Own a Silver 1965 Quarter?

As you can see, the most valuable 1965 quarter you can find is the silver version. Fortunately, it's fairly easy to figure out if you already own one.


First, compare the coin to the standard copper-nickel-clad quarter. There should be a clear difference in the overall color and shine. Despite being over 50 years old, the silver 1965 quarters should look a little shinier.


Next, look at the rims of both coins. With a clad coin, the rims should look reddish-orange, which is the color of copper. The rim of the error coin should be completely silver, with no trace of copper or nickel.


If you're struggling to discern colors, you can also weigh the coins. The clad quarter will be lighter, weighing about 5.67 grams. A silver 1965 quarter will always weigh over 6 grams, and will usually come in at 6.25 grams.


You can also rely on sounds. When you drop a silver coin, you should hear a high-pitched "ring" sound. Since the standard 1965 quarters consist of base metals, they'll make a dull "clunk" sound when dropped.


If you believe you have a rare 1965 quarter, the next step is to get it inspected. This will establish its value and make it easier to sell. That's because certified coins represent much less of a risky investment.


Prominent companies offering professional inspections include:

  • Numismatic Guarantee Corporation (NGC)
  • Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS)
  • American Numismatic Association Certification Service (ANACS)
  • Independent Coin Graders (ICG)


Other Valuable 1965 Quarters

Other than the silver 1965 quarter, there are a few other 1965 error coins worth decent money. Here are some examples of rare 1965 coins:


Off-Center 1965 Washington Quarter

Off-center minting occurs when the die isn't in the right position before the coinage. As a result, the coin looks off-centered. This offset can range from 1% to 99%, with higher offsets being more valuable.


The off-center error is the most common "wrong" version of the 1965 quarter. Despite not being that uncommon, these coins can still fetch a decent price. Mint versions tend to be worth around $90.


Double Tail 1965 Washington Quarter

This is the 1965 version of the double-die error. It consists of the reverse side of the coin getting printed on both sides. According to numismatic experts, this minting error occurred somewhere between 1965 and 1967.


To date, we know of only three copies of the double tail 1965 quarter. Two of them were sold for $41,000 and $80,000. There are many counterfeits of this error, so check the weight of the coin to confirm it's real.


Different Module 1965 Washington Quarter

As mentioned above, 1965 was a year of transition for many types of coins. With all these different modules and dates in use, some quarters ended up getting printed on dimes and pennies.


These error coins tend to be easy to detect. As dimes and pennies are smaller than quarters, they can't take in the full imprint. The smaller size also makes these coins weigh less than the normal 1965 quarters.



Broad-Struck and Struck-Through 1965 Quarters

Both of these errors occurred due to coinage issues. With the broad-struck version, the ring that holds the coin didn't work. This resulted in printing a coin that was flatter and longer than normal.


With the struck-through 1965 quarter, some sort of impurity tainted the coinage process. For example, a clip or staple may have gotten between the die and wedges during the moment of printing.


San Francisco 1965 Special Mint Sets (SMS)

The SMS 1965 quarters originated in the San Francisco Mint. Like all 1965 quarters from this period, though, SMS versions don't have a mint mark. As such, it can be hard to differentiate them from the normal 1965 quarters.


Collecting 1965 Quarters

Now that you know which 1965 quarters are valuable, you may want to start looking for them. The question is: where do you focus your efforts?


In general, it's best to start by checking your usual places for storing coins. Go through old collections, family jars, and coin wrappers. Pay particular attention to coins that came from banks situated in old urban areas.


If you're looking to invest in coins, always go for uncirculated quarters. If there are any signs of circulation, the coin won't be worth a lot. These signs can include scratches, bumps, loss of original shine, and so on.


A full set of Washington quarters requires 147 coins. This includes 83 silver coins (1932-1964) and 64 clad coins (1965-1998). Since most silver coins are out of circulation, you'll likely have to buy them online.


Hunting uncirculated quarters can be challenging, but shouldn't get too expensive. This makes the Washington quarter set a decent collection for beginners. And if you find 1965 silver quarters, all the better!

What Is A 1965 Quarter Worth Today  1965 Quarter ValueWhat Is A 1965 Quarter Worth Today  1965 Quarter Value


What Are the Best Coins to Collect?

The bottom line: 1965 quarters are very much worth your time. Though most of these coins aren't rare, some factors can make them worth more.


As with any coin, a 1965 quarter that's in a decent state is more valuable. Other than that, any errors during the printing process tend to create a collector's item. The above guide contains all the examples you need!


Want to know more about the best coins to collect? At the U.S. Gold Bureau, we've helped thousands of investors like you! Get started right now by claiming a free copy of our Gold and Silver Investor's Guide!