In the 20-year span from 1858 to 1877, only the 1861 and 1873 Philadelphia Mint half eagle issues saw mintages over 20,000 coins. The 1858 half eagle emission was a low 15,136 coins. In 1979 Akers said, 'The 1858 half eagle is not often seen in any condition but when one is available, VF or EF is the likely grade.' A quarter-century later, Garrett and Guth pegged the average grade for certified examples at 'AU52,' but the noncertified examples likely would grade lower.
Description and Analysis courtesy of Heritage Auctions and may not be republished without written permission.