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Impressive Choice AU 1795 Liberty Cap Half Cent to be Featured in our November 2015 Baltimore Auction

Impressive Choice AU 1795 Liberty Cap Half Cent to be Featured in our November 2015 Baltimore Auction

By James McCartney, Numismatist & Cataloger, U.S. Coins

The first two decades of United States half cent production saw numerous design alterations, both purposeful and unintentional. Though several contemporary denominations exhibit similar diversity, half cents are intriguing in that these changes sometimes involved the often-overlooked third side of a coin, the edge. These distinct variations are both exciting and challenging for specialists of the series, and the 1795 half cent is certainly no exception. 

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Impressive Norweb-O'Neal-Harbor View 1908-D Indian Half Eagle to be Offered in our October 2015 Rarities Auction

Impressive Norweb-O'Neal-Harbor View 1908-D Indian Half Eagle to be Offered in our October 2015 Rarities Auction

By James McCartney, Numismatist & Cataloger. Based on the lot description by Jeff Ambio, Vice President of Numismatics & Auction Catalog Production.

The Denver Mint's initial contribution to the Indian half eagle series amounted to 148,000 pieces during the series' inaugural year. While 1908 half eagles from the Philadelphia Mint wer saved in significant numbers as a first year issue, the 1908-D was largely overlooked by the public, and many fewer Mint State examples survive today. 

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Mint State 1811 Tall 5 Capped Bust Left Half Eagle to be offered as part of The Griggs Collection in our October 2015 Rarities Auction

Mint State 1811 Tall 5 Capped Bust Left Half Eagle to be offered as part of The Griggs Collection in our October 2015 Rarities Auction

By James McCartney, Numismatist & Cataloger

First introduced in 1795, the half eagle was the first gold coin struck by the United States for circulation. As the second largest gold denomination issued by the U.S. Mint (until the appearance of the double eagle in 1850), the $5 coin represented a more moderate sum of money and was more practical for everyday commerce than the $10 eagle.
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Majestic 1834 Classic Head Quarter Eagle to be offered as part of The Griggs Collection in our October 2015 Rarities Auction.

Majestic 1834 Classic Head Quarter Eagle to be offered as part of The Griggs Collection in our October 2015 Rarities Auction.

By James McCartney, Numismatist & Cataloger, U.S. Coins

The U.S. quarter eagle denomination was authorized by the Mint Act of 1792, but was not put into production until 1796 due to a substantial surety bond required of Mint employees that was intended to discourage pilfering. Once the bond had been reduced and secured, half eagles and eagles were struck in 1795, with the $2.50 denomination making its debut the following year. 

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Condition Census Gem 1815 Capped Bust Quarter to be featured in our October 2015 Rarities Auction

Condition Census Gem 1815 Capped Bust Quarter to be featured in our October 2015 Rarities Auction

By James McCartney, Numismatist & Cataloger

Prompted by the desire to reduce dependence on the Spanish silver coins, the Mint Act of April 2, 1792, authorized the production of coins in gold, silver and copper spanning the denominations from half disme through the $10 eagle. While select patterns and federally issued coins were struck shortly after this authorization, it wasn’t until 1796 that the dime, quarter and quarter eagle were minted. 

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Finest Known 1807/6 Draped Bust Cent from the Legendary Cardinal Collection to be Featured in Rarities Night of our 2015 Chicago ANA World’s Fair of Money Auction.

Finest Known 1807/6 Draped Bust Cent from the Legendary Cardinal Collection to be Featured in Rarities Night of our 2015 Chicago ANA World’s Fair of Money Auction.

By James McCartney, Numismatist & Cataloger

It has been a great pleasure for all of us at Stack’s Bowers Galleries to offer for auction an incredible CAC-Approved, Gem Red 1807/6 Draped Bust cent from the Cardinal Collection. This coin was alluded to in our Did You Know? blog article earlier this month and as Rarities Night of our 2015 Chicago ANA World’s Fair of Money Auction approaches, bidders will soon be able to share in the excitement!

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Gorgeous 1889-CC Morgan Silver Dollar to be featured in Rarities Night of our Upcoming 2015 Chicago ANA World’s Fair of Money Auction

Gorgeous 1889-CC Morgan Silver Dollar to be featured in Rarities Night of our Upcoming 2015 Chicago ANA World’s Fair of Money Auction

By James McCartney, Numismatist & Cataloger

Proceeds to benefit scholarships at Kansas State University

By 1885, the Carson City Mint had been striking coins for 15 years. The success of the nearby Comstock Lode prompted government officials to push for a federal mint in the area, hoping it would guarantee a steady supply of bullion, increased production figures and sustained profitability. These expectations proved to be misguided. 

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Gorgeous Gem Judd-67 Pattern Gold Dollar to be Featured in Rarities Night at our 2015 Chicago ANA World’s Fair of Money Auction.

Gorgeous Gem Judd-67 Pattern Gold Dollar to be Featured in Rarities Night at our 2015 Chicago ANA World’s Fair of Money Auction.

By James McCartney, Numismatist & Cataloger

While the U.S. Mint in Philadelphia had been striking gold coins since 1795, these quarter eagle, half eagle, and eagle denominations represented a large sum of money and were mostly used in large business transactions. Many were also sent abroad and melted to take advantage of the favorable silver–to-gold ratio. After four decades of this monetary hemorage, the Coinage Act of 1834, passed by Congress on June 27th and signed by President Andrew Jackson on the following day, raised coinage ratios from the antiquated 15:1 to a more relevant 16:1 silver-to-gold composition, effectively eliminating the advantages of exporting U.S. gold coins. 

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