Sorry, I can't resist starting an offer for advice that way, it's usually the other way around, right? So here is what you need to know: The overwhelming odds are that your blue Whitman-style books have no "key-date" (rare) coins. We buy coins at the following rates, and mark them up 10-30% for retail sales at shows:
Cents: We pay 1.5 to 2.0 times face value for those old "wheat" cents; so a penny is worth two--yes, two--cents. We can go higher on some of the older ones in the books.
Nickels: We pay 10-25 cents per piece for old liberty and buffalo nickels if the date is legible. Also, wartime Jefferson nickels 1942-1945 are made from silver worth about fifty cents apiece if you can read the mint mark (P, D, or S) over the dome of Monticello on the reverse. Other Jefferson nickels are just nickels, even though they go back to 1938.
Dimes and higher: Dimes, quarters, half dollars, and dollars are silver 1964 and earlier. For these we pay 6-7 times face value; so a quarter from 1950, for instance, becomes $1.50. To put it differently, anything 1965 and newer, spend or deposit in good health (the exception being half dollars, as described in next line).
Half dollars only are 40% silver 1965-1970. For these we pay a dollar, it's a funny alloy the refineries don't like, but worth more than face value.
U.S. Proof and Mint sets, in original government packaging ("OGP"), are worth more than face value--but in many cases, not much more. The copper-nickel proof and mint sets from the 1970s forward are close to being just money. Silver and gold sets are obviously worth more. All sets before 1971 have some silver in them.
Many Kennedy half dollars and Susan B. Anthony/Sacagawea/Presidential dollars are in beautiful packages but bring very little premium.
So those old books may just be about the amount of money that's in them, and the silver. But if they are nearly complete, or composed of well-selected specimens, we will adjust our offer accordingly. The "Lincoln I" album and flying eagle/indian cents might be worth more, depending upon date and condition.
I don't know that you have enough to warrant a drive all the way down here. If you find a local dealer and use this appraisal as leverage, you'll probably get a fair payout. Don't get me wrong, I want the coins, but I don't want to mislead you into burning more gasoline than they are worth getting here. Alternatively, you can bring them to me next time you are heading into the big City; or I can visit you when I'm in your area; or you can mail them to me with tracking and I'll send you a check, I actually do business this way all over the country all the time. I have my fans and we do business on the honor system; my niche is families in need.
Give a call at 914-649-3317 with any questions!