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.
Under the provisions of the Bland-Allison Act of 1878, the government was obligated to purchase between two and four million ounces of newly mined silver each month. This was the basis for the heavily produced Morgan dollar, which was primarily minted to turn all this silver into coin form. As a result, the focus of the mints turned to producing Morgan dollars, and it stayed there for the next 10+ years. In 1878, two major rarities were created in the half dollar series because of the diversion away from subsidiary coinage to the new dollars: the 1878-CC and the 1878-S. Both were low mintage issues, the Carson City coin only had 62,000 pieces struck, while the S-mint had even fewer with a mere 12,000 halves produced.
Description and Analysis courtesy of Heritage Auctions and may not be republished without written permission.
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