Coin Specifications

Category: Four Dollar Stella (1879-1880)
Mint: West Point
Mintage: 10
Obverse Designer: George T. Morgan
Reverse Designer: Charles E. Barber
Composition: Gold
Fineness: 0.8600
Weight: 7.0000g
AGW: 0.1935oz
Melt Value: $354.13 (1/16/2021)
Diameter: 22mm
Edge: Reeded
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1880 COILED HAIR $4 PF obverse 1880 COILED HAIR $4 PF reverse
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Description & Analysis

The Morgan design. Obverse: Head of Liberty faces left, her hair coiled in a bun atop her head, this coil held in place by a band inscribed LIBERTY. Around, the inscription * 6 * G * .3 * S * .7 * C * 7 * G * R * A * M * S * and below, the date 1880 is from a curved logotype. Evidence of repunching is visible in the upper loop of the second 8 in the date. Reverse: A single large star serves as the central motif, inscribed with incuse lettering ONE STELLA 400 CENTS. Around, in small letters, are the mottoes E PLURIBUS UNUM and DEO EST GLORIA. In large letters, around the border, the legend UNITED STATES OF AMERICA above, and the denomination FOUR DOL. below. Struck in gold with a reeded edge. The D in UNITED is clearly doubled above, as it is on all four dollar gold pieces that we have seen from 1879 and 1880.

George T. Morgan accepted an invitation from Mint Director Henry Linderman to join the staff as assistant engraver in 1876. Earlier he studied at the Birmingham Art School and the South Kensington Art School before taking a position with the Royal Mint in London. At the Philadelphia Mint, he worked under Engraver William Barber and later, his son, Charles Barber. Remaining at the Mint until his death nearly 50 years later in 1925, Morgan remained the assistant engraver until his promotion to engraver after Charles Barber died in 1917. There is little doubt that Morgan was more talented than Charles Barber, and there is also little doubt that Barber was jealous of Morgan's talent.

Today, Morgan is best known for his Liberty silver dollar that now popularly carries his name, the Morgan dollar. He also created numerous pattern designs, such as the heralded 1879 Schoolgirl dollar, and prepared other designs for the medal department. It is unfortunate that Morgan was excluded from the failed design competition of 1891 that ultimately led to the three silver Barber designs of 1892

The 1880 Coiled Hair issue is clearly the rarest of four varieties. In past rosters, we have only been able to account for eight different examples, but have now added a ninth example from the Dallas Bank Collection. For many years it was believed that just 10 pieces were struck, but it is more likely that 20 pieces were originally coined. A general rule for proof gold pieces from the mid- to late 1800s is that approximately half the original mintage survives. Like the 1879 Coiled Hair and 1880 Flowing Hair coins, the 1880 Coiled Hair is a major rarity from an extremely small mintage. Only the 1879 Flowing Hair stella could be called anything close to common, and that is the issue most often chosen by type collectors who want a single example of the stella. Of course, advanced specialists will want all four varieties, and are advised to take advantage of this offering.

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


GRADE SUMMARY

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Price Guide

Last Updated: 8/31/2017

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

1880 COILED HAIR $4 PF
  GVGFVFXF505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ - - - - - - - - - - 475000 675000 800000 950000 1350000 1575000 2375000 - - -
1880 COILED HAIR $4 PF CA
  GVGFVFXF505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1800000 3450000 - - -

NGC Price and Value Guides Disclaimer

Disclaimer: The prices listed in the various NGC Price and Value Guides are compiled from a number of independent, third party sources in the numismatic community which NGC believes to be reliable. Prices provided are averages, not specific prices for individual coins. Further, because these prices are only updated from time to time, they do not reflect short term pricing trends, which are quite common and are often quite dramatic, given the volatile nature of the collectible coin marketplace. This is especially true for rare coins, where there are fewer sales and greater variations in sale prices. For all of these reasons, the prices in these guides are designed to serve merely as one of many measures and factors that coin buyers and sellers can use in determining coin values. These prices are not intended, and should not be relied upon, to replace the due diligence and — when appropriate — expert consultation that coin buyers and sellers should undertake when entering into a coin transaction. As such, NGC disclaims all warranties, express or implied, with respect to the information contained in the NGC Guides. By using the NGC Guides, the user agrees that neither NGC nor any of its affiliates, shareholders, officers, employees or agents shall have any liability for any loss or damage of any kind, including without limitation any loss arising from reliance on the information contained in the Guides.

Census

 
NGC GRADE SUMMARY

Total Graded: 12
Low Grade: 61
Average Grade: 64
High Grade: 67

The chart showing 61 series, 62 series, 63 series, 64 series, 65 series, 66 series, 67 series.
NGC CENSUS DETAIL Last Updated: 1/12/2021 1880 COILED HAIR $4 PF
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970Total
Base------------211-2-1---7
-----------------------
-----------------------
-----------------------
Total------------211-2-1---7
 ------------29%14%14%-29%-14%--- 
1880 COILED HAIR $4 PF CA
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970Total
Base----------------113---5
-----------------------
---------------1------1
-----------------------
Total---------------1113---6
 ---------------17%17%17%50%--- 

NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1880 COILED HAIR $4 PF CA
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base15552158041605916317165781721917805181341824118346185511884819318218452253424782258422634632099332823449641008
15636158891614516404167911741417914181691827618414186501900420160220742328325135260102826332493336863666643058
000000179141816918276184141865019004201602207423283251352601028263324933368600
000000180241820518311184821874919161210022230424032254882617830181328873409100
1880 COILED HAIR $4 PF UC
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base16185164451670716973172411790218505188441895319061192721957720060226582336625674267822738728439295203063136607
16271165321679517062174611810318618188801898919131193731973820926228942413526043269832773728799298903262338437
000000186181888018989191311937319738209262289424135260432698327737287992989000
000000187311891619025192011947519899217922313024904264122718528088291593026000
1880 COILED HAIR $4 PF
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base15092153381558815840160951672317296176191772317826180261831718777212532192824131251902576826774278082887134597
15174154211567215925163041691417403176531775717892181231847019602214782266224484253822610327118281623077936327
000000174031765317757178921812318470196022147822662244842538226103271182816200
000000175111768817791179591822018623204272170323396248372557526438274632851600
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: PF 61
Points: 18777
Owner: Andy Nguyen
 
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NGC Auction Central Disclaimer

NGC Auction Central Disclaimer

Disclaimer: The auction prices realized listed in the NGC Auction Central are compiled from a number of independent, third party sources in the numismatic community which NGC believes to be reliable. The auction data listed by NGC may occasionally contain typographical or input errors that can result in incorrect prices realized appearing on the NGC website. Therefore, the prices realized listed in NGC Auction Central are designed to serve merely as one of many measures and facts that coin buyers and sellers can use in determining coin values. These prices are not intended, and should not be relied upon, to replace the due diligence and – when appropriate – expert consultation that coin buyers and sellers should undertake when entering into a coin transaction. As such, NGC disclaims all warranties, express or implied, with respect to the information contained in the NGC Auction Central. By using the NGC Auction Central, the user agrees that neither NGC nor any of its affiliates, shareholders, officers, employees or agents shall have any liability for any loss or damage of any kind, including without limitation any loss arising from reliance on the information contained in the NGC Auction Central.