Coin Specifications

Category: Seated Liberty Half Dollars (1839-1891)
Mint: New Orleans
Mintage: 2,658,000
Obverse Designer: Christian Gobrecht
Reverse Designer: Christian Gobrecht
Composition: Silver
Fineness: 0.9000
Weight: 12.4400g
ASW: 0.3599oz
Melt Value: $6.32 (10/17/2019)
Diameter: 30.6mm
Edge: Reeded
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1856 O 50C MS obverse 1856 O 50C MS reverse
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Description & Analysis

The New Orleans Mint once again out-produced its Philadelphia cousin in half dollar coinage. The Crescent City was America's principal port of entry for silver bullion coming from Latin America, and much of this left the local mint in the form of coins or ingots.This issue is common across all grades through Extremely Fine, and even Mint State coins are not particularly scarce. Quite a number of gems have been certified by NGC.

Mint records indicate that 18 obverse dies and eight reverses were shipped to the New Orleans Mint for 1856's half dollar coinage, though Bugert notes that these records are incomplete. Of course, undated reverse dies of previous years that remained serviceable were likely used as needed. A total of 19 die marriages are known from the combining of 12 obverses and 10 reverses. An amazing four different collars have been cataloged, with reed counts of 140, 141, 143 and 148, respectively.

The most desirable varieties for 1856-O are the repunched dates (FS-301, WB-102 and VP-001, WB-103). Both are recognized by NGC under its VarietyPlus service.

GRADE SUMMARY

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Price Guide

Last Updated: 6/21/2019

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

1856 O 50C MS
  GVGFVFXF505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ 52.00 70.00 85.00 100.00 190 310 340 455 515 570 715 910 1550 2850 5825 12000 - - - -
$ - - - - - - - 1050 2000 4400 - - - -

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Census

 
NGC GRADE SUMMARY

Total Graded: 317
Low Grade: PrAg
Average Grade: 55
High Grade: 66

The chart showing PrAg series, G series, VG series, F series, VF series, 40 series, 45 series, 50 series, 53 series, 55 series, 58 series, 60 series, 61 series, 62 series, 63 series, 64 series, 65 series, 66 series.
NGC CENSUS DETAIL Last Updated: 10/8/2019 1856 O 50C MS
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970Total
Base258330232516223241215262820172----317
-----------------------
-------------1--------1
-----------------------
Total258330232516223241215272820172----318
 1 %2 %3 %1 %9 %7 %8 %5 %7 %10 %13 %1 %5 %8 %9 %6 %5 %1 %---- 

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Images
Date
Service
Grade
Auction House
Sale / Lot
Price
5/30/2005 PCGS MS 64   Goldberg May 30 - June 16, 2005 Pre-Long Beach Coin Auction, 31/Lot# 236 $2,645.00
1/23/2006 NGC AU 58   Heritage Auctions 2006 January Dallas, TX The Jules Reiver Collection Signature Auction #390, 390/Lot# 21329 $546.25
7/4/2011 PCGS VF 35   Teletrade Auction 3095, 3095/Lot# 1308 $86.25
1/1/2013 PCGS MS 63   Stack's Bowers The January 2013 Americana Sale, 180/Lot# 12417 $1,880.00
7/28/2013 PCGS MS 64   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 07/28/2013, 85/Lot# 130412 $2,695.00
6/1/2014 PCGS AU 55   David Lawrence Rare Coins Internet Auction # 806, 815/Lot# 410 $450.00
6/9/2014 PCGS MS 64   Stack's Bowers iAuction 3485, 6034/Lot# 20373 $2,585.00
5/31/2015 NGC AU 53   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(1), 131523/Lot# 23494 $211.50
6/21/2015 NGC AU 55   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(1), 131526/Lot# 29122 $329.00
6/4/2017 PCGS Genuine UNC   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(2), 131724/Lot# 23554 $329.00


NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1856 50C MS O
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base11352012553205635977838561044115212521375163420092807463060079178145212318228068
461572192774015746598079191080118512931461175922753415508970641095917408248110
000000659807919108011851293146117592275341550897064109591740800
000000721832981111612191334154818842541402255488121127402029500
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: MS 66
Points: 6007
Owner: Malibu Collector
 
Grade: MS 65
Points: 4630
Owner: Hugh Stiel Rare Coins
 
View the Registry Image Gallery

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