Coin Specifications

Category: Three Dollar Gold (1854-1889)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 50,555
Catalog: KM-84
Obverse Designer: James B. Longacre
Reverse Designer: James B. Longacre
Composition: Gold
Fineness: 0.9000
Weight: 5.0150g
AGW: 0.1451oz
Melt Value: $167.82 (10/9/2015)
Diameter: 20.5mm
Edge: Reeded
Numismatic specification data provided by Krause Publications NumisMaster.
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1855 $3 MS obverse 1855 $3 MS reverse

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There are no NGC varieties for this coin.

Description & Analysis

As with other odd denominations of the 19th century, the three dollar gold piece saw its production fall dramatically from the first year to the second. In an article for the August 29, 2006 edition of Numismatic News, R.W. Julian describes the contrast between the mintages of 1854 and 1855: 'Because of [the denomination's] novelty, there was a reasonable coinage of the new pieces at Philadelphia in 1854, nearly 139,000 pieces, but the demand and mintage would start to slip in 1855 and continue to do so.'

Julian continues by noting that 'While there was never any great demand for the $3 gold piece, there was still enough gold deposited at the Philadelphia Mint in 1855' for another substantial issue, its mintage most often listed as 50,555 business strikes. While that figure is enough to qualify the 1855 as a higher-mintage issue in the context of the denomination, the 1855 was not saved in quantity the way the 1854 was. As a result, while the 1855 three dollar gold piece is an accepted type issue in circulated and the lowest Mint State grades, by the Select level, it is distinctly scarcer than the 1854, 1874, or 1878, the most common type issues.

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


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Price Guide

Last Updated: 10/1/2015

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

1855 $3 MS
Base $ 470 540 690 910 1150 1400 1525 1650 2400 3600 4350 7300 12650 39850 51980 - - - -
$ 1200 - 1600 1800 2600 4000 4700 8250 14500 43000 56000 - -

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.

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Total Graded: 1232
Low Grade: G
Average Grade: 55
High Grade: 66

Upcoming Auctions

A random selection of NGC coins is shown below.

Auction House
Sale / Lot
11/1/2015 AU 58   Heritage Auctions 2015 October 29 - November 1 US Coins Signature Auction - New York Session(3), 1225/Lot# 5076
11/1/2015 AU 53   Heritage Auctions 2015 October 29 - November 1 US Coins Signature Auction - New York Session(4), 1225/Lot# 7890

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Auction House
Sale / Lot
2/20/2005 NGC AU 53   Goldberg February 20-23, 2005 Pre-Long Beach Coin Auction, 28/Lot# 2199 $1,323.00
12/31/2005 NGC AU 55   Heritage Auctions Continuous Internet Auction #66012, 66012/Lot# 24272 $1,495.00
10/16/2006 NGC AU 58   David Lawrence Rare Coins Internet Auction # 109, 114/Lot# 1560 $2,875.00
2/23/2009 PCGS AU 50   Teletrade Auction 2657, 2657/Lot# 2589 $1,552.50
8/7/2010 NGC XF 45   Stack's Bowers The August 2010 Boston Rarities Sale, 34/Lot# 1625 $9,775.00
11/6/2011 NGC XF 45   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(1), 131146/Lot# 24570 $1,063.75
5/27/2012 NGC XF 45   Bonhams Coins and Medals, 19995/Lot# 1255 $877.00
8/2/2012 NGC XF 40   Heritage Auctions 2012 August 2-5 US Coins Signature Auction- Philadelphia Session(3), 1173/Lot# 4535 $822.50
2/3/2014 PCGS AU 55   Heritage Auctions 2014 February 3 - 5 US Coins Signature Auction - New York Session(3), 1202/Lot# 4628 $1,292.50
10/12/2014 PCGS   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 10/12/2014, 190/Lot# 173666 $870.00

NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1855 $3 MS
1855 $3 MS Prooflike
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: AU 55
Points: 1936
Owner: Whidbey Island Collection
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