Coin Specifications

Category: Seated Liberty Dollars (1840-1873)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 46,500
Catalog: KM-71
Obverse Designer: Christian Gobrecht
Reverse Designer: Christian Gobrecht
Composition: Silver
Fineness: 0.9000
Weight: 26.7300g
ASW: 0.7734oz
Melt Value: $10.96 (11/27/2015)
Diameter: 38.1mm
Edge: Reeded
Numismatic specification data provided by Krause Publications NumisMaster.
Link to this coin

1865 S$1 MS obverse 1865 S$1 MS reverse

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There are no NGC varieties for this coin.

Description & Analysis

The Civil War was not only a human disaster of unparalleled proportions in the history of the United States to that time, it was a numismatic disaster as well. As in other times of uncertainty throughout our nation's history, people turned to hoarding currency for worse times that were anticipated to come. By 'currency' we mean gold and silver, which began disappearing from circulation in December 1861, when New York banks suspended so-called 'specie payments,' or payouts in silver coin for gold or paper currency. By the summer of 1862 all regular-issue U.S. coinage (and any precious-metal foreign coins as well) had disappeared from circulated, even Indian cents. Merchants turned to the production of patriotic Civil War tokens and 'store cards' to try to conduct business, to which hated paper currency and scrip provided a meager supplement.

Silver coin production at the Mint declined drastically during the war years, and whatever silver coin was produced was promptly either tucked away or exported. Bowers' Silver Dollar Encyclopedia maintains that most of the 1865 Seated dollar issue was exported to Central and South America.

Regardless of the precise disposition of the coins nearly 150 years ago, today there is incontrovertible evidence that the issue is quite rare in Mint State grades. Both NGC and PCGS have each certified a couple of dozen Uncirculated pieces, but nearly all of them are MS64 or below.

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


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Price Guide

Last Updated: 9/22/2015

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

1865 S$1 MS
Base $ 465 575 640 925 1875 2450 2800 3100 3600 5000 6150 8750 20000 77500 - - - - -
$ - - - - 3850 - - 10500 30000 - - - -

NGC Price and Value Guides Disclaimer



Total Graded: 74
Low Grade: G
Average Grade: 55
High Grade: 65

Upcoming Auctions

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Auction House
Sale / Lot
9/6/1999 NGC AU 50   Teletrade Auction 1207, 1207/Lot# 1572 $763.00
2/20/2005 PCGS MS 60   Goldberg February 20-23, 2005 Pre-Long Beach Coin Auction, 28/Lot# 1724 $3,680.00
2/23/2005 NGC AU 55   Heritage Auctions 2005 February Long Beach Signature Sale #366, 366/Lot# 7382 $2,300.00
4/16/2008 NGC MS 64   Heritage Auctions 2008 April Rosemont, IL (CSNS) Signature Coin Auction #1104, 1104/Lot# 2122 $10,350.00
2/3/2014 PCGS AU 55   Heritage Auctions 2014 February 3 - 5 US Coins Signature Auction - New York Session(2), 1202/Lot# 4024 $3,055.00
3/16/2014 NGC Details AU Details  GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 03/16/2014, 172/Lot# 158948 $1,430.00
10/24/2014 NGC Details AU Details  Stack's Bowers iAuction 3505, 6059/Lot# 23302 $887.13
12/28/2014 PCGS VF 30   David Lawrence Rare Coins Internet Auction # 836, 845/Lot# 482 $1,250.00

NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1865 S$1 MS
Registry Image Gallery

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