The NGC Universal ID is a four digit alphanumeric that groups coins based on a unique combination of date, mintmark, denomination and striking process (MS, PF, or SP). These IDs are a simple organization of all coins prior to variety attribution and grading.
February 21, 1853, was an important date in the history of American numismatics. Congress enacted legislation to reduce the weight of minor silver coinage, also authorizing the issuance of three dollar gold pieces. Section 7 of the Mint Act of that date read: 'And be it further enacted, that from time to time there shall be struck and coined at the Mint of the United States, and the branches thereof, conformably in all respects to law, and conformably in all respects to the standard of gold coins now established by law, a coin of gold of the value of three dollars, or units, and all the provisions of an act entitled 'An act to authorize the coinage of gold dollars and double eagles,' approved March third, eighteen hundred and forty nine, shall be applied to the coin herein authorized, so far as the same may be applicable, but the devices and shape of the three dollar piece shall be fixed by Secretary of the Treasury.'
The obverse features an Indian princess facing left, wearing a feathered headdress with a beaded band inscribed LIBERTY. Around is the statutory legend UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. The reverse has an agricultural or cereal wreath enclosing the date and denomination. The letters in the denomination DOLLARS are smaller and shorter than the date digits, the only year where that occurred (and technically making this a one-year design subtype). James B. Longacre duplicated the design for this coinage issue, with the appropriate denomination change, for the new type of gold dollar.
Description and Analysis courtesy of Heritage Auctions and may not be republished without written permission.
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