Coin Specifications

Category: Seated Liberty Half Dollars (1839-1891)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 744,900
Obverse Designer: Christian Gobrecht
Reverse Designer: Christian Gobrecht
Composition: Silver
Fineness: 0.9000
Weight: 12.4400g
ASW: 0.3599oz
Melt Value: $9.12 (8/11/2020)
Diameter: 30.6mm
Edge: Reeded
Link to this coin

1866 MOTTO 50C MS obverse 1866 MOTTO 50C MS reverse
Images Courtesy of Heritage Auctions (HA.com)
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Description & Analysis

The motto IN GOD WE TRUST debuted on the two-cent piece in 1864 and was embraced by a public distraught over the Civil War. The U. S. Mint added it to all silver and gold coins large enough to accommodate it, and included among these was the half dollar. The motto was inscribed on a banner over the eagle on all 1866(P) half dollars and subsequent issues.

Coined at a time when silver coins were still at a substantial premium over paper money, this issue saw no domestic circulation until 10 years later, when the price of silver had fallen drastically. Most examples were exported as bullion shortly after minting, and 1866(P) half dollars are scarce in all grades. Coins grading XF and higher are highly sought by collectors. A fair number of Mint State pieces have survived, including several gems. Most of these are well struck, though low-relief details may be somewhat diminished through excessive polishing of the dies.

Wiley and Bugert identified eight die marriages as the products of eight obverse and seven reverse dies. An amazing five different collars were used for this issue with reed counts of 145, 150, 152, 153 and 154. As there was no such thing as a "master collar," these variations resulted from slight variances in the degree of turn while the collars were being machined in a lathe. The collecting of these coins by collar counts has never developed much of a following.

Two MPD (misplaced date) varieties are known for the 1866(P) half dollar, (FS-302/WB-102 and WB-103). Minor DDO (doubled-die obverse varieties are also known but have attracted little interest.

GRADE SUMMARY

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Price Guide

Last Updated: 6/25/2019

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

1866 MOTTO 50C MS
  GVGFVFXF505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ 42.00 65.00 100.00 140 265 375 425 460 585 780 950 1370 2400 4000 6700 9500 34000 55000 - -
$ - - - - - - - - - - 7000 11000 - -

NGC Price and Value Guides Disclaimer

Disclaimer: The prices listed in the various NGC Price and Value Guides are compiled from a number of independent, third party sources in the numismatic community which NGC believes to be reliable. Prices provided are averages, not specific prices for individual coins. Further, because these prices are only updated from time to time, they do not reflect short term pricing trends, which are quite common and are often quite dramatic, given the volatile nature of the collectible coin marketplace. This is especially true for rare coins, where there are fewer sales and greater variations in sale prices. For all of these reasons, the prices in these guides are designed to serve merely as one of many measures and factors that coin buyers and sellers can use in determining coin values. These prices are not intended, and should not be relied upon, to replace the due diligence and — when appropriate — expert consultation that coin buyers and sellers should undertake when entering into a coin transaction. As such, NGC disclaims all warranties, express or implied, with respect to the information contained in the NGC Guides. By using the NGC Guides, the user agrees that neither NGC nor any of its affiliates, shareholders, officers, employees or agents shall have any liability for any loss or damage of any kind, including without limitation any loss arising from reliance on the information contained in the Guides.

Census

 
NGC GRADE SUMMARY

Total Graded: 133
Low Grade: PrAg
Average Grade: 55
High Grade: 68

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, 67 series, 68 series.
NGC CENSUS DETAIL Last Updated: 8/11/2020 1866 MOTTO 50C MS
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970Total
Base13331981153111617137610411--133
------------------1---1
---------------11-----2
-----------------------
Total13331981153111617137711421--136
 1%2%2%2%14%6%8%4%2%8%12%1%5%10%5%5%8%3%1%1%-- 

NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1866 MOTTO 50C MS
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base11352012623817057458479081028117313631583188626853564443157478515132332093325473
461572213024897187798679481076123614361684215229783853487066701008815800224460
000000779867948107612361436168421522978385348706670100881580000
000000813888988112513001510178524193271414253087592116601836600
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: MS 62
Points: 1886
Owner: 123cents
 
Grade: AU 50
Points: 847
Owner: TerryZman
 
View the Registry Image Gallery

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NGC Auction Central Disclaimer

NGC Auction Central Disclaimer

Disclaimer: The auction prices realized listed in the NGC Auction Central are compiled from a number of independent, third party sources in the numismatic community which NGC believes to be reliable. The auction data listed by NGC may occasionally contain typographical or input errors that can result in incorrect prices realized appearing on the NGC website. Therefore, the prices realized listed in NGC Auction Central are designed to serve merely as one of many measures and facts that coin buyers and sellers can use in determining coin values. These prices are not intended, and should not be relied upon, to replace the due diligence and – when appropriate – expert consultation that coin buyers and sellers should undertake when entering into a coin transaction. As such, NGC disclaims all warranties, express or implied, with respect to the information contained in the NGC Auction Central. By using the NGC Auction Central, the user agrees that neither NGC nor any of its affiliates, shareholders, officers, employees or agents shall have any liability for any loss or damage of any kind, including without limitation any loss arising from reliance on the information contained in the NGC Auction Central.