Almost identical in size to the American dime and patterned after the currency, the Canadian ten cent coin is a common form of currency still used today. The ten cent piece, or dime, is the smallest coin produced by the Royal Canadian Mint and has been since 1922, even smaller than the penny coin. Since being introduced into circulation in 1858, the dime has changed its look and composition over the years in relation to the reigning monarch as well as what was happening in Canada at the time. In the early 1900s, the dime would change due to the Royal Canadian Mint being created and a new ruler having taken the throne.
Below, we take a look at the ten cent coins produced from 1900 to 1909, seeing highlights of the coin type as well as what changes took place. The coins of this era would feature a new monarch image as well as changes to the composition.
1902 10 Cent Coins
Beginning in 1902, the ten cent coin would no longer feature the image of Queen Victoria and instead show King Edward VII. King Edward’s image would remain on the dime from 1902 until 1910. The King’s right facing profile image is on the obverse side while the two maple boughs design is placed on the reverse side.
Royal Canadian Mint
Before Canada was an independent nation, the coinage created for the Province of Canada were struck by the Royal Mint of London. It was not until January of 1908 that the Royal Canadian Mint would open its doors after a short ceremony led by Lord Grey and his wife Lady Grey. The Royal Canadian Mint was located in Ottawa and would have just 61 employees when it first opened.
Authorization was actually provided for the Royal Mint to be created in 1901 with the idea first proposed in 1890. It would take some time before the Royal Canadian Mint would be ready for operation in 1908.
It was after the 1908 opening that most all currency was minted in Canada. The design of the coins, including the dime, would remain the same. However, the die axis was changed from coinage to medal except for the 1 cent coins that have always been struck with a medal axis.
1909 10 Cent Coins
In 1909, the ten cent coins struck earlier in the year have slightly smaller leaves with subdued veining similar to the coins struck in previous years. These coins are known as the Victorian Leaf variety. Coins that were produced later in the year will have a slightly broader look to the leaves with veining that is more pronounced. This coin type is known as the Broad Leaf variety. The Victorian Leaf variety can be quite valuable.
From 1908 to 1910, the composition of the ten cent coin would change. The coin would weigh 2.32 grams and have a diameter of 18.034 mm. The coin would be struck with 92.5% silver and 7.5% copper.