Coin Specifications

Category: Early Dollars (1794-1804)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 327,536
Obverse Designer: Robert Scot
Reverse Designer: Robert Scot
Composition: Silver
Fineness: 0.8920
Weight: 26.9600g
ASW: 0.7731oz
Melt Value: $13.34 (5/25/2017)
Diameter: 39-40mm
Edge: Lettered
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1798 SMALL EAGLE S$1 MS obverse 1798 SMALL EAGLE S$1 MS reverse

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Description & Analysis

A transitional year for silver dollars, with two distinct design types produced. Only two die varieties of the Small Eagle dollars have been identified, and each of these is a major variety, distinguished by either 13 stars or 15 stars on the obverse.

The 15 Star obverse has eight stars along the left border and seven stars at the right border, and is considered the first 1798 silver dollar variety produced. The reasoning is sound: the Small Eagle design was discontinued with the new Heraldic Eagle reverse taking its place. This means that the Small Eagle coins were produced at the beginning of the year. Since the obverse of the Small Eagle type with just 13 stars was also used with a Heraldic Eagle reverse, it must have been coined after those with 15 stars.

Just as interesting is the knowledge that this 1798-dated obverse die was actually created a couple years earlier. Since Kentucky became the 15th state in 1792 and Tennessee became the 16th state in June 1796, the die must have been created before that date. In fact, all 1795 and 1796 silver dollars have 15 stars on the obverse, and all 1797 dollars have 16 stars. Finally, in 1798 the decision was made to reduce the star count to 13 stars for the original 13 states. Stylistically, the obverse is similar to some 1796 obverse dies, and was probably made at about the same time, with only the 179 of the date punched in the die.

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


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Price Guide

Last Updated: 10/24/2016

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

Base $ 1900 2350 4050 5750 12750 29500 35500 43750 85000 155000 - - 335000 - - - - - - -
$ - - - - 120000 - - - - - - - - -

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Total Graded: 155
Low Grade: G
Average Grade: 40
High Grade: 63

Upcoming Auctions

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Auction House
Sale / Lot
10/22/1997 NGC XF 45   Teletrade Auction 0991, 991/Lot# 1756 $2,889.00
9/26/2002 PCGS AU 50   Heritage Auctions 2002 September Long Beach Signature Sale #300, 300/Lot# 7770 $10,350.00
6/12/2006 NGC VF 30   David Lawrence Rare Coins Internet Auction # 91, 96/Lot# 891 $4,485.00
5/30/2010 PCGS VF 30   Bonhams Coins, Medals, and Banknotes, 18301/Lot# 1497 $6,435.00
9/4/2011 PCGS AU 55   Goldberg September 4-6, 2011 The Pre-Long Beach Auction, 65/Lot# 5054 $8,912.50
10/17/2012 PCGS VF 35   Stack's Bowers The November 2012 Baltimore Auction - US and World Lots - Live and Internet Only Sessions, 144/Lot# 2032 $7,475.00
6/16/2013 NGC Details XF Details  GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 06/16/2013, 79/Lot# 101766 $2,915.00
7/27/2013 NGC G 6   Stack's Bowers The August 2013 Chicago ANA World's Fair of Money , 192/Lot# 2360 $2,585.00
10/8/2014 NGC VF 25   Heritage Auctions 2014 October 8 - 13 PNG New York Invitational US Coins Signature Auction - New York Session(4), 1210/Lot# 4808 $4,171.25

NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1798 SMALL EAGLE S$1 MS
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: MS 63
Points: 17886
Owner: Tradedollarnut
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