Written by Rafa Sánchez
Sacagawea dollar coins, and in particular the Cheerios variant, are one of the most sought-after U.S. commemorative coins by coin collectors.
Do you have 5 minutes? Here you’ll learn how to identify this type of coin and discover its real value.
- 1 What are Sacagawea coins 2000 P?
- 2 Sacagawea coins: a tribute in the form of a commemorative coin
- 3 How do you know if you have a valuable Sacawagea coin?
- 4 What are Sacagawea Cheerios coins?
- 5 How do you know if you have a Sacagawea 2000 P Cheerios coin?
- 6 What is the value of Sacagawea Cheerios dollars?
- 7 Sacagawea Cheerios coin value: trend and historical prices
- 8 How to sell Sacagawea dollar coins
- 9 Final thoughts
What are Sacagawea coins 2000 P?
In 1803, President Thomas Jefferson commissioned an expedition from the Great Plains to the coast of the Pacific Ocean with the aim of mapping, exploring, populating and establishing trade relations along its route.
This dangerous mission was led by Captain Meriwether Lewis and Second Lieutenant William Clark, taking place from 1804 to 1806.
Toussaint Charbonneau and his wife Sacagawea traveled as members of the expedition , the latter as a translator from her native language (shoshone) to hidatsa. In February 1805, in the middle of the expedition, their son, Jean Baptiste Charbonneau, was born.
Sacagawea was a very valuable member of the expedition both for her knowledge of topography and for several actions she carried out. When her son was born, who she always carried on his back, they both became a sign of peace for the Indian tribes they came into contact with, since until that moment, it was not normal for an Indian woman and her baby to travel on an American expedition.
Sacagawea coins: a tribute in the form of a commemorative coin
In 1998, the Dollar Coin Design Advisory Committee (DCDAC), after receiving several public proposals for new designs, recommended that the new coin show the image of the native Sacagawea, in her honor and memory.
After receiving and evaluating the numerous obverse and reverse designs on May 4, 1999, the committee selected the obverse design by sculptor Glenna Goodrace. For the reverse side, the design by Thomas D. Rogers Sr. was chosen.
How do you know if you have a valuable Sacawagea coin?
On the obverse of the Sacagawea one-dollar coin appears the face of a native Shoshone woman named Randy’L He-dow Teton, representing Sacagawea (since no true image of Sacagawea existed).
She carries her son Jean Baptiste tied to her back. Above them the word “Liberty” is embossed, in the field on the left is the phrase “In God We Trust” and on the right is the year and the mint mark (P: Philadelphia; D: Denver).
On the reverse side is a bald eagle in flight surrounded by 17 stars representing the 17 states in the year of Lewis and Clark’s expedition. Above is the legend “United States Of America”, bottom left “E Pluribus Unum” and below, the value in letters “One Dollar“.
The One Dollar coin weighs 8.1 grams, is 26.5 mm in diameter and 2 mm thick, consisting of a pure copper core lined with outer layers of magnesium brass (77% copper, 12% zinc, 7% manganese and 4% nickel).
Gold Sacagawea coins
Because of its color it was called “gold dollar“, although, as we have seen, it does not contain this precious metal. The Sacagawea dollar was minted between 2000 and 2008.
What are Sacagawea Cheerios coins?
To promote this new $1 Sacagawea coin and the new millennium, the U.S. Mint, in addition to press, radio and television announcements, reached an agreement with Walmart and General Mills that 5,500 boxes of Cheerios cereal would be hidden with a free $2 Sacagawea 2000 P.
In 2005, Tom Delroy, a collector, detected that of the 5,500 specimens that were part of the “Cheerios” promotion, dozens of them had the particularity of having different eagle’s tail feathers on the back, a more detailed design of the grooves in the feathers.
How do you know if you have a Sacagawea 2000 P Cheerios coin?
For a Sacagawea dollar to be considered a Cheerios type or variant, it must have certain characteristics. All Cheerios Sacagawea dollars were manufactured in Philadelphia – Mint Brand P – in the year 2000, and have a special detail in the feathers as shown in the above photograph.
It is thought that this difference in the tail feathers is because the coins were manufactured using different master matrices than the rest of the series. So far, only a few hundred Cheerios coins have been found of the 5,500 Sacagawea dollars in the promotion.
So far, in 2020, the two largest graduation companies (PCGS and NGC) have found and graduated a total of 126 specimens between them, 123 by PCGS and 3 by NGC, in the qualities shown below:
What is the value of Sacagawea Cheerios dollars?
The majority of the Sacagawea 2000 P Cheerios are in the qualities MS67 and MS68 (totaling 108 of the total 126). However, this is not a closed list as there is no record of specimens minted with the different matrices, and we do not believe that all the Sacagawea Cheerios dollars that were made have been found.
That is to say, we do not know the number of units produced with the matrices with the detailed design of the bald eagle’s tail feathers, but we do know that a few years ago, after the discovery of this variant in 2005, the units of Sacagawea 2000 P Cheerios dollars that were counted were between 60 and 70 pieces.
These numbers have risen to the current 126 specimens, and that is why we do not rule out the existence of other specimens in circulation – in coin jars, flea markets, antique shops, etc. In order to detect them, it is important that you take a good look at the eagle’s tail feathers, with the year 2000 and mint mark P, since circulated copies not certified by any certification company can be sold on eBay for $1,990.
While the value of most Sacagawea one-dollar coins is their face value or a few more dollars in high uncirculated graduations ($4 to $8), the Sacagawea 2000 P Cheerios coin reaches thousands of dollars in the market as it is very scarce and so highly sought-after by collectors.
Other than this coin, there are certain variants like the “wounded eagle” or the Sacagawea dollars that were part of the payment prize for designer Glenna Goodrace, and were possibly the first units produced.
Sacagawea Cheerios coin value: trend and historical prices
Let’s see below some examples and the price evolution of this scarce and valuable variant during the last few years:
This information has been elaborated with auction prices exclusively for graduated copies and encapsulated by the PCGS company as it is the one with the highest number of these copies registered and the one with the highest value. Therefore, we have ignored copies certified by other companies of different graduation (NGC, ANACS, etc).
The highest value reached by a Sacagawea 2000 P Cheerios dollar was registered this very year (2020), reaching $10,200 for a PCGS graduated copy in MS68.
According to the values in the table, over the last 4 years (2017-2020) the value of the Sacagawea 2000 P Cheerios dollar in MS68 quality has been progressively increasing. If we look at the lower sale/allocation prices in each interval we see that in 2017, the lowest price reached $4,583, in 2018 $5,520, in 2019 $5,569 and finally $6,469 in 2020.
The MS67 graduation value has followed a similar evolution to that of the specimens in MS68, from maximum values of $4,230 in 2017 to prices of $8,400 in 2020. This represents a doubling of their value in 2017, in just three years.
In MS66 or lower quality copies, we don’t have as much information. This is logical since the largest number of Sacagawea 2000 P Cheerios listed correspond to MS67 and MS68 qualities.
How to sell Sacagawea dollar coins
One way to get the best price when selling the scarce variant of the Sacagawea 2000 P Cheerios dollar is to be able to offer it in the market in lots with the Lincoln 2000 P penny, which together with the Cheerios dollar, was part of the promotion and was also included in the cereal boxes.
As we have said, you will always get an extra in the selling price of your Sacagawea 2000 P Cheerios dollar without being able to sell it:
- In the same original packaging as the Cheerios package, and/or
- Next to the other coin that was part of the 1 cent Lincoln 2000 P promotion, and/or
- With the “Certificate of Authenticity” signed by Philip N. Diehl, Director of the United States Mint, which was attached to the bag containing the coin.
Finally, in order to make it easier for you to find this variant of the Sacagawea 2000 P dollar and its valuation for sale, we show you a series of conclusions by way of summary:
- First, you should note that its date is 2000 and its mint is P from Philadelphia. If this is the case, look at the eagle’s tail feathers in case the feathers are defined. If this is the case, congratulations!
- The value of Cheerios Sacagawea 2000 P coins in high qualities such as MS67 and MS68 has evolved upwards in recent years, despite the fact that the number of specimens counted has increased since this type of variant was discovered. This indicates that although the supply has increased, the demand is higher, so it will always represent a good investment.
- Whenever possible, look for the Lincoln 2000 P penny belonging to the promotion, the original bag and/or the Certificate of Authenticity. The value of your coin will go up exponentially regardless of the degree of conservation.
I have a degree in Business Administration and Management and numismatics studies at the University of Murcia (Spain).