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.
The 1857-C is among the more common half eagles from this mint, making it a good date for type purposes. There may be as many as 200-250 pieces known but many grade below AU. Around four dozen are in the various AU grades and there are as many as a 10 to 12 coins in Uncirculated. Interestingly, nearly all of the Uncirculated pieces grade MS60 to MS61, and this date is exceedingly rare in MS63 or better.
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