Coin Specifications

Category: Morgan Dollars (1878-1921)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 880
Catalog: KM-110
Obverse Designer: George T. Morgan
Reverse Designer: George T. Morgan
Composition: Silver
Fineness: 0.9000
Weight: 26.7300g
ASW: 0.7734oz
Melt Value: $12.88 (2/28/2015)
Diameter: 38.1mm
Edge: Reeded
Numismatic specification data provided by Krause Publications NumisMaster.
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1895 S$1 PF obverse 1895 S$1 PF reverse

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There are no varieties for this coin.

Description & Analysis

Among proof Morgan dollars, the 1895 is the date with the most cachet, and more than a century of numismatic scholarship has justified its position as the "King of the Morgan Dollars." Ownership of an example, even a worn or impaired piece, is a sign of numismatic connoisseurship, and it is hardly a surprise that so outstanding a set as the Morgan dollars of the Jackson Hole Collection would have an example. The exquisite preservation and contrast of this specimen practically assure that it will become the cornerstone of another great set.

Several 19th century proof issues in American numismatics benefit from their association with key-date business strikes from Philadelphia. Coins such as the 1877 cent and 1885 and 1886 nickels command a dramatic premium in proof format, even though their rarity as proofs may be equal to that of specimens from nearby years. By contrast, certain proof-only issues attract the attention of fewer buyers, and they may trade for comparatively less. In fact, a number of proof-only dates in less popular series, coins such as the 1886 three cent nickel, exhibit only a modest spike in price.

The 1895 Morgan dollar intersects with these two classes in fascinating ways, and certain collectors choose not to obtain an example, since they consider it a proof-only issue. Mint records report 880 proofs, and many authorities believe the coins have a high rate of survival, with typical estimates between 600 and 700 specimens. The 12,000 regular-issue pieces listed for the year, however, are considerably more controversial. Among the sweeping retrospectives of Walter Breen's essential Complete Encyclopedia is his assessment of the 1895 dollars: "No business strikes known, though they were struck from at least one of the 5 obvs. and 4 revs. made for this mintage."

Few of Breen's statements have gone unchallenged, however, and in his 1993 work Silver Dollars & Trade Dollars of the United States: A Complete Encyclopedia, Volume Two, Q. David Bowers questioned the existence of circulation-strike examples, not just in the present, but in the past as well: "It is presumed that the entire mintage, if indeed it ever existed, consisting of only 12 mint bags, went to the melting pot under the provisions of the Pittman Act of 1918." He concluded that there was significant evidence that the 12,000 circulation-strike 1895 dollars listed in the Mint's ledger were something else entirely. Roger W. Burdette (2006) has re-established the idea that the 12,000 pieces were struck but never left government vaults.

Yet generations of numismatists have held out hope for 1895 business strikes, through mass meltings and fruitless searches of bags released by the Treasury, and countless empty holes in as many cardboard folders save space for one. In many ways, what actually happened does not matter so much as what so many collectors have assumed, and even if absolutely conclusive evidence came to light that the 1895 dollar was a proof-only issue all along, enthusiasm for specimens would continue undiminished.

Description and Analysis courtesy of Heritage Auctions and may not be republished without written permission.


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Price Guide

Last Updated: 3/24/2014

Click on a price to see historical prices, comparison charts and trends.

1895 S$1 PF
Base $ 25000 31000 34000 36000 38000 38000 39000 41000 42500 43500 45000 47500 52500 54500 66000 80000 105000 120000 155000 562500
$ - - - - - - 52500 55000 61000 72000 95000 120000 150000 -
1895 S$1 PF Cameo
Base $ - - - - - - - - - - 55000 60000 70000 77500 97000 125000 155000 185000
$ - - - - - 60000 65000 77500 87500 110000 130000 160000 -
1895 S$1 PF Ultra Cameo
Base $ - - - - - - - - - - 80000 95000 115000 145000 180000 235000
$ - - - - - 90000 110000 130000 160000 - -

The World Coin Price Guide is independently compiled by Krause Publications’ NumisMaster. NGC makes this information available to its website visitors as a free service, but in no way does the information provided represent NGC’s official opinion or policy. For example, varieties listed in the World Coin Price Guide may not necessarily be recognized by NGC. Please contact NGC Customer Service with any questions.

NGC Price and Value Guides Disclaimer



Total Graded: 358
Low Grade: G
Average Grade: 63
High Grade: 69

Upcoming Auctions

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Auction House
Sale / Lot
11/27/2000 PCGS PF 62   Teletrade Auction 1381, 1381/Lot# 1624 $19,950.00
7/26/2003 PCGS PF 63   Heritage Auctions 2003 July Baltimore, MD. Signature Sale #328, 328/Lot# 8976 $27,600.00
1/1/2007 NGC PF 65   David Lawrence Rare Coins Internet Auction # 120, 125/Lot# 6337 $60,950.00
4/9/2007 PCGS PF 66   Ultra Cameo Heritage Auctions 2007 Dallas, TX Signature Coin Auction #450, 450/Lot# 120 $126,500.00
9/14/2008 NGC PF 66   Cameo Goldberg September 14-16, 2008 Pre-Long Beach Coin Auction, 48/Lot# 1219 $80,500.00
5/27/2012 PCGS PF 65   Cameo Goldberg May 27-31, 2012 The May Pre-Long Beach Auction, 69/Lot# 1461 $63,250.00
7/21/2013 PCGS PF 63   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 07/21/2013, 84/Lot# 126768 $48,028.20
7/18/2014 PCGS PF 64   Cameo Stack's Bowers IAuction 3491, 6042/Lot# 21310 $58,162.50

NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1895 S$1 PF
1895 S$1 PF Cameo
1895 S$1 PF Ultra Cameo
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: PF 67 UC
Points: 13217
Owner: BChap
Grade: PF 68 CA
Points: 13140
Owner: Benchmark Ventures LP
View the Registry Image Gallery

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