Coin Specifications

Category: Seated Liberty Half Dollars (1839-1891)
Mint: New Orleans
Obverse Designer: Christian Gobrecht
Reverse Designer: Christian Gobrecht
Composition: Silver
Fineness: 0.9000
Weight: 12.4400g
ASW: 0.3599oz
Melt Value: $6.35 (10/20/2019)
Diameter: 30.6mm
Edge: Reeded
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1861 O 50C SP obverse 1861 O 50C SP reverse
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Description & Analysis

This issue is more often seen as a Specimen striking than the 1860-O SP half dollar. In the past, such coins were routinely labeled as branch mint proofs, but this term is now considered at odds with the capabilities of the mints outside of Philadelphia. The term "specimen" better captures the extraordinary nature of these pieces without stepping on numismatic facts.

Estimates of the number of survivors are in the four the five range, though Walter Breen reported as many as six. His figure is now considered to include some duplication, which is understandable given the poor or non-existant photographs in catalogs published before the 1970s.

The obverse die is a clear match for Bugert's Number 2, but the reverse is not as easily attributed. He describes the W-04 marriages (Obv 2 and Rev C) as the one which made the specimen coins.

GRADE SUMMARY

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Census

 
NGC GRADE SUMMARY

Total Graded: 3
Low Grade: 62
Average Grade: 62
High Grade: 64

The chart showing 62 series, 63 series, 64 series.
NGC CENSUS DETAIL Last Updated: 10/8/2019 1861 O 50C PF
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970Total
Base-------------2-1------3
-----------------------
-----------------------
-----------------------
Total-------------2-1------3
 -------------67 %-33 %------ 

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Images
Date
Service
Grade
Auction House
Sale / Lot
Price
4/16/2008 NGC SP 64   Heritage Auctions 2008 April Rosemont, IL (CSNS) Signature Coin Auction #1104, 1104/Lot# 2313 $97,750.00


NGC Registry

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