The NGC Universal ID is a four digit alphanumeric that groups coins based on a unique combination of date, mintmark, denomination and striking process (MS, PF, or SP). These IDs are a simple organization of all coins prior to variety attribution and grading.
While it is far less elusive than the 1854-S half eagle, which is one of the legendary rarities of U.S. numismatics, the 1855-S is nonetheless extremely rare in Mint State. Since so few half eagles were made in 1854--268, to be precise--the 1855 San Francisco issue was effectively the first circulating issue of the most popular denomination in the Old West. Despite the 61,000 coins produced, most circulated extensively, in the best hard-money tradition of the region.
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