Darrin writes: I have an old coin that is copper in color (very dark brown). It has the word Helvetia on one side with the Swiss cross inside some sort of a shield. On the opposite side, is the number one surrounded by the ol’ wheat rap. There is a small mint mark (?) that is the letter “B”. The date on the first side is 1868. I am wondering the value of this coin. I think, other than the dark “old” color, the coin is at least 95-97% (almost unused as it appears). Thanks!! neat site!!
The coin you described above is a One Rappen from Switzerland. The “B” represents that the coin was minted at the Bern Mint. It is the lowest denomination that was issued during this era and was similar to a U.S. cent. (100 Rappen=1 Franc). It has a high mintage, 2 million, with a good survival rate. Prices range from less than US$1 to more than US$60 depending on grade.