Coin Specifications

Category: Seated Liberty Half Dimes (1837-1873)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 340,000
Catalog: KM-A62.2
Obverse Designer: Anthony C. Paquet
Reverse Designer: Christian Gobrecht
Composition: Silver
Fineness: 0.9000
Weight: 1.24 Grams
ASW: 0.0359oz
Melt Value: $0.51 (11/30/2015)
Diameter: 15.5mm
Edge: Reeded
Numismatic specification data provided by Krause Publications NumisMaster.
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1859 H10C MS obverse 1859 H10C MS reverse

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Description & Analysis

The Philadelphia Mint half dime of 1859 is an anomaly. It bears Assistant Engraver Anthony C. Paquet's interpretation of the Seated Liberty figure, while the New Orleans issue of that year retained the old Hughes figure from 1840.

Paquet created a slimmer Liberty having hair that looks more like a bonnet. The ribbon inscribed LIBERTY is more curved and the letters are taller. Finally, the obverse stars have hollow centers. This Liberty hub was ultimately rejected in favor of yet another new one for 1860 that lasted through the end of the series in 1873, making the 1859(P) half dime desirable as a one-year-only type coin.

Despite its modest mintage, this issue is not rare in Mint State. Only at the MS 65 level does it become challenging to locate. In addition, most pieces are quite well struck.

The Valentine and Breen references list several obverse dies having repunched dates, yet it appears that at least a couple of these may be different states of the same die. NGC will attribute the most complete and prominent RPD under its VarietyPlus Service.


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Price Guide

Last Updated: 9/3/2015

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

1859 H10C MS
Base $ 17.00 20.00 28.00 40.00 78.00 140 155 175 185 240 325 435 650 1500 2200 4850 15000 - -
$ 85.00 - 165 180 195 - - 475 750 1750 2500 6000 25000

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Total Graded: 242
Low Grade: F
Average Grade: 63
High Grade: 68

Upcoming Auctions

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Auction House
Sale / Lot
10/8/1994 NGC MS 63   Heritage Auctions 1994 October Long Beach Signature Sale #124, 124/Lot# 5202 $330.00
10/22/1997 PCGS MS 63   Teletrade Auction 0991, 991/Lot# 1293 $272.50
9/4/2011 NGC AU 58   Goldberg September 4-6, 2011 The Pre-Long Beach Auction, 65/Lot# 919 $144.00
12/19/2011 PCGS MS 64   David Lawrence Rare Coins Monday - Internet Auction # 646, 653/Lot# 2100 $540.50
4/24/2013 NGC MS 63   Heritage Auctions 2013 April 24 - 28 CSNS US Coin Signature Auction - Chicago Session(8), 1184/Lot# 7784 $411.25
8/31/2014 NGC MS 63   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 08/31/2014, 189/Lot# 216550 $234.00
3/10/2015 NGC MS 64   Stack's Bowers March 2015 Portland ANA, 6103/Lot# 1143 $458.25
10/28/2015 PCGS MS 63   Heritage Auctions 2015 October 28 Gardner Collection IV US Coins Signature Auction - New York Session(2), 1229/Lot# 99148 $517.00

NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1859 H10C MS
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: MS 67
Points: 4516
Owner: Electric Peak Collection
Grade: MS 63
Points: 1044
Owner: pulver set
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