Coin Specifications

Category: Early Halves (1794-1839)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 3,918
Obverse Designer: Robert Scot
Reverse Designer: Robert Scot
Composition: Silver
Fineness: 0.8920
Weight: 13.4800g
ASW: 0.3866oz
Melt Value: $6.67 (10/16/2017)
Diameter: 32.5mm
Edge: Lettered
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1796 16 STARS 50C MS obverse 1796 16 STARS 50C MS reverse


  
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Description & Analysis

It is presumed that this obverse die bearing 16 stars was prepared following the admission of Tennessee as the 16th state in June, 1796. The other possibility is that it was retrofitted with an additional star when finally needed for use the following year. In the absence of documentation, the truth may never be known. In any case, this obverse was paired with the same reverse die used for Overton-101 and, later, for 1797 O-101.

The 16-star variety is slightly more scarce than the 15-star coins. This is of little consequence, however, since the majority of buyers are seeking a single type coin. Collectors of these coins by date and variety are a small group, though perhaps larger than for any of the other silver denominations. Whatever their motivation, buyers will find that both varieties are scarce and expensive across all grades. The majority of surviving pieces, which number somewhere around 4-5 dozen, are well circulated. As with O-101, however, their value was recognized early enough for more to be saved than the small production would suggest. Typical grades are in the VG-VF range. Most pieces were well struck, though many have suffered damage of one sort or another, and/or improper cleaning.

GRADE SUMMARY

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Price Guide

Last Updated: 5/27/2015

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

1796 16 STARS 50C MS
  GVGFVFXF505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ 45000 59500 74000 92500 135000 185000 200000 225000 275000 315000 340000 440000 485000 545000 - 1075000 - - - -
$ - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

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Census

 
NGC GRADE SUMMARY

Total Graded: 14
Low Grade: VG
Average Grade: 50
High Grade: 65


Upcoming Auctions


Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Images
Date
Service
Grade
Auction House
Sale / Lot
Price
8/6/2001 NGC VG 10   Heritage Auctions 2001 Atlanta, GA Signature Sale #267, 267/Lot# 6091 $20,700.00
5/28/2006 PCGS MS 64   Goldberg May 28-31, 2006 Pre-Long Beach Coin and Currency Auction, 36/Lot# 2908 $414,000.00
1/30/2011 PCGS MS 64   Goldberg January 30 - February 3, 2011 The Pre-Long Beach Coin and Currency Auction, 62/Lot# 1413 $345,000.00
4/27/2011 PCGS FA 2   Heritage Auctions 2011 April Rosemont CSNS Signature & Platinum Night US Coin Auction Session(3), 1154/Lot# 5138 $27,600.00
7/27/2013 PCGS F 12   Stack's Bowers The August 2013 Chicago ANA World's Fair of Money , 192/Lot# 4104 $88,125.00
5/19/2015 PCGS MS 66   Stack's Bowers May 2015 Pogue Collection, 6071/Lot# 1102 $822,500.00
1/4/2017 PCGS F 12   Heritage Auctions 2017 January 4 - 9 FUN US Coins Signature Auction - Session(4), 1251/Lot# 5642 $51,700.00


NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1796 50C MS 16 STARS Prooflike
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base597369387210803887271038410780111471166011977124181269412973134201386918405216412586331445111
629570297486826892791051610902113181176612124125101278713122135701538119484230482772431445110
00000010902113181176612124125101278713122135701538119484230482772431445100
00000011025114891187112271126021288013271137191689320562244562958431445100
1796 50C MS 16 STARS
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base574766856951775684281004310430107881128911598120291229912571130081344617884210532519230664111
606067747219798089661017210549109551139211742121191239012717131541492518940224332701630664110
00000010549109551139211742121191239012717131541492518940224332701630664100
00000010669111221149511885122091248012862133001640519997238122884030664100
Registry Image Gallery

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