Coin Specifications

Category: Braided Hair Half Cents (1840-1857)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 40,430
Obverse Designer: Christian Gobrecht
Reverse Designer: Christian Gobrecht
Composition: Copper
Weight: 5.4400g
Diameter: 23mm
Edge: Plain
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1856 C-1 1/2C MS obverse 1856 C-1 1/2C MS reverse
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Description & Analysis

Though Walter Breen described two different reverse dies for 1856 currency half cents, this finding is largely accepted to have been in error. It appears that his distinguishing mark simply appears or doesn't depending on how well each coin is struck.

Another low-mintage issue, the 1856 half cent saw very little circulation and remains common. Many failed to circulate at all and survive today in Mint State, some with considerable red color.

GRADE SUMMARY

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Use the scroll bar at the bottom of this box to view a summary of the NGC Price Guide, NGC Census, Auction Prices Realized and NGC Registry Scores for each grade.

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Price Guide

Last Updated: 10/14/2019

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

1856 1/2C C-1 MS BN
  GVGFVFXF505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ 60.00 75.00 80.00 90.00 125 175 190 200 250 265 285 380 515 700 1500 - - - - -
$ - - - - - - - - 600 850 - - - -
1856 1/2C C-1 MS RB
  GVGFVFXF505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ - - - - - - - - - - 310 475 675 1600 10000 - - - - -
1856 1/2C C-1 MS RD
  GVGFVFXF505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ - - - - - - - - - - - - 1650 3950 12100 - - - - -
$ - - - - - - - - - 5000 - - - -

NGC Price and Value Guides Disclaimer

Census

 
NGC GRADE SUMMARY

Total Graded: 424
Low Grade: VG
Average Grade: 61
High Grade: 65

The chart showing VG series, F series, VF series, 40 series, 45 series, 50 series, 53 series, 55 series, 58 series, 60 series, 61 series, 62 series, 63 series, 64 series, 65 series.
NGC CENSUS DETAIL Last Updated: 12/3/2019 1856 1/2C C-1 MS BN
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970Total
Base--126513720255045278545213-----382
----------------1-----1
--------------1-1-----2
-----------------------
Total--126513720255045278555215-----385
 --0 %1 %2 %1 %3 %2 %5 %6 %13 %1 %14 %20 %14 %14 %4 %----- 
1856 1/2C C-1 MS RB
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970Total
Base-----------11-13203-----38
-----------------------
-----------------------
-----------------------
Total-----------11-13203-----38
 -----------3 %3 %-34 %53 %8 %----- 
1856 1/2C C-1 MS RD
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970Total
Base---------------22-----4
-----------------------
-----------------------
-----------------------
Total---------------22-----4
 ---------------50 %50 %----- 

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Images
Date
Service
Grade
Auction House
Sale / Lot
Price
11/29/1999 NGC AU 55   Brown Teletrade Auction 1241, 1241/Lot# 1016 $152.60
8/11/2011 PCGS MS 62   Red Brown Heritage Auctions 2011 August Chicago Signature US Coin & Platinum Night Auction Session(6), 1158/Lot# 9049 $385.25
4/21/2013 PCGS Genuine AU   Brown GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 04/21/2013, 71/Lot# 111232 $84.70
1/26/2014 PCGS MS 65   Red Brown Goldberg January 26, 2014 The Missouri Cabinet, 77/Lot# 221 $7,763.00
6/9/2014 NGC VF 30   Brown Stack's Bowers iAuction 3485, 6034/Lot# 20009 $74.03
7/13/2014 PCGS AU 58   Brown David Lawrence Rare Coins Internet Auction # 812, 821/Lot# 3 $225.00
6/14/2015 NGC MS 62   Brown Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(1), 131525/Lot# 27020 $305.50
11/9/2015 NGC AU 58   Brown Stack's Bowers November 2015 Baltimore, 6110/Lot# 24507 $235.00
9/25/2016 NGC AU 55   Brown Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(1), 131640/Lot# 21007 $129.25


NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1856 1/2C C-1 MS BN
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base22023728830433643750256359763172575479395811591393212423152519273530483386
226254293315370459522574608662735767848102512371637218823832591283931610
000000522574608662735767848102512371637218823832591283900
000000543586620694744780903109213151880225124512663294400
1856 1/2C C-1 MS RB
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base237258311336366477539609642674774811847110313632197515855245909631468917506
244276319346403498562620653707786823932119016413184528056526044650670960
000000562620653707786823932119016413184528056526044650600
0000005866316637417998351018127619194171540257816179669900
1856 1/2C C-1 MS RD
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base20324159123190339463537584648690920115922333427536757476140655617921933
243547801452403804885536056627671000151726314074549458786279655618390
0000003804885536056627671000151726314074549458786279655600
0000004225125686276768431079187530294720562060096417655600
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: MS 63 BN
Points: 1159
Owner: johnpill23
 
Grade: MS 62 BN
Points: 958
Owner: Yevrah1
 
View the Registry Image Gallery

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