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The copper-nickel three-cent piece, often called a three-cent nickel piece or three-cent nickel, was struck by the United States Bureau of the Mint from 1865 to 1889.

The initial design of the Shield nickel was struck from 1866 until 1883, then was replaced by the Liberty Head nickel. The Buffalo nickel was introduced in 1913 as part of a drive to increase the beauty of American coinage; in 1938, the Jefferson nickel followed.  As of the end of FY 2013, it cost more than nine cents to produce a nickel;the Mint is exploring the possibility of reducing cost by using less expensive metals.

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