Coin Specifications

Category: Seated Liberty Dollars (1840-1873)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 46,500
Catalog: KM-71
Obverse Designer: Christian Gobrecht
Reverse Designer: Christian Gobrecht
Composition: Silver
Fineness: 0.9000
Weight: 26.73g
ASW: 0.7734oz
Melt Value: $14.93 (9/30/2016)
Diameter: 38.1mm
Edge: Reeded
Numismatic specification data provided by Krause Publications NumisMaster.
Link to this coin

1865 S$1 MS obverse 1865 S$1 MS reverse

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There are no NGC varieties for this coin.

Description & Analysis

The Civil War was not only a human disaster of unparalleled proportions in the history of the United States to that time, it was a numismatic disaster as well. As in other times of uncertainty throughout our nation's history, people turned to hoarding currency for worse times that were anticipated to come. By 'currency' we mean gold and silver, which began disappearing from circulation in December 1861, when New York banks suspended so-called 'specie payments,' or payouts in silver coin for gold or paper currency. By the summer of 1862 all regular-issue U.S. coinage (and any precious-metal foreign coins as well) had disappeared from circulated, even Indian cents. Merchants turned to the production of patriotic Civil War tokens and 'store cards' to try to conduct business, to which hated paper currency and scrip provided a meager supplement.

Silver coin production at the Mint declined drastically during the war years, and whatever silver coin was produced was promptly either tucked away or exported. Bowers' Silver Dollar Encyclopedia maintains that most of the 1865 Seated dollar issue was exported to Central and South America.

Regardless of the precise disposition of the coins nearly 150 years ago, today there is incontrovertible evidence that the issue is quite rare in Mint State grades. Both NGC and PCGS have each certified a couple of dozen Uncirculated pieces, but nearly all of them are MS64 or below.

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


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Price Guide

Last Updated: 9/16/2016

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

1865 S$1 MS
Base $ 465 575 640 925 1875 2450 2800 3100 3600 4600 5000 6150 8750 20000 77500 - - - - -
$ - - - - 3850 - - - 10500 30000 - - - -

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Total Graded: 77
Low Grade: G
Average Grade: 55
High Grade: 65

Upcoming Auctions

A random selection of NGC coins is shown below.

Auction House
Sale / Lot
10/5/2016 AU 58   Heritage Auctions 2016 October 3 - 5 US Coins Signature Auction - Dallas Session(2), 1240/Lot# 3948

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Auction House
Sale / Lot
4/16/2000 PCGS G 6   Teletrade Auction 1296, 1296/Lot# 1785 $174.40
5/31/2004 PCGS MS 64   Goldberg May 31 - June 2, 2004 Pre-Long Beach Coin and Currency Auction, 25/Lot# 820 $13,225.00
4/28/2010 NGC F 12   Heritage Auctions 2010 April-May Milwaukee, WI CSNS US Coin Auction #1139, 1139/Lot# 8994 $460.00
11/29/2012 NGC MS 60   Heritage Auctions 2012 November 29 - December 2 US Coin Signature Auction - Houston Session(1), 1177/Lot# 3843 $3,824.63
4/14/2013 PCGS Genuine AU   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 04/14/2013, 70/Lot# 109366 $1,292.50
12/28/2014 PCGS VF 30   David Lawrence Rare Coins Internet Auction # 836, 845/Lot# 482 $1,250.00
2/26/2015 NGC XF 40   Heritage Auctions 2015 February 26 - March 1 PNG Dallas Invitational US Coins Signature Auction - Dallas Session(3), 1218/Lot# 3920 $1,762.50
8/11/2015 PCGS   Prooflike Stack's Bowers 2015 Chicago ANA, 6104/Lot# 21 $5,875.00

NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1865 S$1 MS
Registry Image Gallery

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