Coin Specifications

Category: Seated Liberty Half Dimes (1837-1873)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 7,280,000
Obverse Designer: Christian Gobrecht and Robert B. Hughes
Reverse Designer: Christian Gobrecht
Composition: Silver
Fineness: 0.9000
Weight: 1.2400g
ASW: 0.0359oz
Melt Value: $0.61 (5/24/2017)
Diameter: 15.5mm
Edge: Reeded
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1857 H10C MS obverse 1857 H10C MS reverse

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There are no NGC varieties for this coin.

Description & Analysis

This is another of the high mintage issues typical of the 1853-58 period. The Mint Act of 1853 which lowered the weights of the half dime through half dollar specified that these coins were to paid out by the Treasury only in exchange for gold, and this was intended to prevent them from becoming a redundant nuisance. Instead, Mint Director James R. Snowden paid them out in exchange for deposits of either gold or silver, and mintages thus exploded from this trade that was so profitable to holders of silver. His misguided attempt at ending the silver coin shortage of 1850-53 was finally brought to an end by his superior in 1858.

1857 half dimes are common in all grades through MS 65. Most, like the example illustrated, are poorly struck. This flaw is almost always present in the coins' borders, but Liberty's head and foot are also found less than fully formed. Attempts to correct these problems by retouching the master hub were not successful, and an entirely new one was created in 1859.


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Price Guide

Last Updated: 11/4/2016

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

1857 H10C MS
Base $ 17.00 20.00 24.00 32.00 60.00 120 130 140 155 165 185 230 330 500 850 1350 3850 15750 - -
$ - - - - - - - 240 - 675 975 3250 5500 -

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Total Graded: 854
Low Grade: PrAg
Average Grade: 61
High Grade: 68

Upcoming Auctions

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Auction House
Sale / Lot
9/8/1997 NGC MS 66   Teletrade Auction 0978, 978/Lot# 1183 $1,242.00
2/11/2007 PCGS MS 65   Goldberg February 11-14, 2007 Pre-Long Beach Coin and Currency Auction, 39/Lot# 1274 $891.25
6/30/2013 PCGS VF 35   David Lawrence Rare Coins Internet Auction # 758, 767/Lot# 126 $60.00
2/16/2014 NGC XF 45   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 02/16/2014, 174/Lot# 172010 $50.00
8/10/2014 PCGS XF 40   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(1), 131433/Lot# 25039 $47.00
10/3/2014 PCGS   Stack's Bowers iAuction 3502, 6056/Lot# 22029 $99.88
10/4/2015 NGC MS 61   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(2), 131541/Lot# 23440 $129.25
12/18/2016 NGC MS 63   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(2), 131652/Lot# 27956 $211.50

NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1857 H10C MS
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: MS 66
Points: 2161
Owner: Electric Peak
Grade: MS 65
Points: 1678
Owner: kathy&barry
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