Coin Specifications

Category: Capped Bust $5 (1807-1834)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 263,806
Catalog: KM-43
Obverse Designer: John Reich
Reverse Designer: John Reich
Composition: Gold
Fineness: 0.9160
Weight: 8.75g
AGW: 0.2580oz
Melt Value: $344.84 (9/26/2016)
Diameter: 25mm
Edge: Reeded
Numismatic specification data provided by Krause Publications NumisMaster.
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1820 $5 MS obverse 1820 $5 MS reverse

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There are no NGC varieties for this coin.

Description & Analysis

The 1820 date is among the most curious and interesting of the many fascinating half eagles of the 1820s, if not on a par with the fabulously rare 1822, of which but three examples are known, or the 1825/4, which only has two pieces known. Going by the rarity estimates given in Bass-Dannreuther, from 375 to 476 examples of half eagles from 1820 through 1829 are known, of which the 1820-dated varieties constitute about one-third of the total. (The recorded mintage of 1820 half eagles, at 263,806 coins, was an overlarge one that was never again even approached during the 1820s.) However, since there are nine varieties of 1820 half eagle, all of them individually range from 'rare' (R.5) to 'extremely rare' (R.7). In fact, of the 25 known die pairings of half eagles dated from 1820 through 1829, one only single die pairing, the R.4 1823 (BD-1, the only known marriage for the year) can be considered less than rare, with an estimated 80 to 100 known survivors.

Focusing on only the varieties dated 1820, the 2012 Guide Book lists three varieties for the year: the Curved Base 2, Large Letters, the Curved Base 2, Small Letters, and the Square Base 2 (all of which are Large Letters marriages, there are no known Square Base 2, Small Letters variants). Bass-Dannreuther lists four varieties with Square Base 2, Large Letters: BD-1, R.7, BD-2, High R.5, BD-3, R.5, and BD-4, High R.7. There are two Curved Base 2, Large Letters varieties, BD-5, R.6, and BD-7, High R.7, and there are three Curved Base 2, Small Letters varieties: BD-6, R.7, BD-8, High R.7, and BD-9, High R.7.

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


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Price Guide

Last Updated: 3/16/2016

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1820 $5 MS
Base $ - 2500 5300 7150 10000 11750 12750 15500 19000 22500 28000 34000 42000 67500 145000 325000 - - - -
$ - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

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Total Graded: 42
Low Grade: 45
Average Grade: 62
High Grade: 66

Upcoming Auctions

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Auction House
Sale / Lot
1/10/1998 NGC MS 63   Heritage Auctions 1998 F.U.N. Signature Sale #181, 181/Lot# 7774 $12,075.00
7/20/2004 PCGS MS 63   Heritage Auctions 2004 July New York, NY Signature Sale #320, 320/Lot# 8201 $20,700.00
1/3/2006 PCGS MS 62   Heritage Auctions 2006 January Orlando, FL (FUN) Signature Auction #394, 394/Lot# 3475 $21,850.00
4/26/2006 PCGS MS 63   Heritage Auctions 2006 April (CSNS) Signature Auction #404, 404/Lot# 2634 $29,900.00
1/8/2014 PCGS MS 63   Heritage Auctions 2014 January 8 - 12 FUN US Coin Signature Auction - Orlando Session(3), 1201/Lot# 5426 $31,725.00
1/26/2014 PCGS MS 63   Goldberg January 26-28, 2014 January Pre-Long Beach Sale 17.5% BP, 78/Lot# 1776 $49,350.00

NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1820 $5 MS
1820 $5 MS Prooflike
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