Press Release - February 26, 2004

Heritage to Auction Superb and Rare 1856 Flying Eagle Snow 5

Dallas, TX - Heritage's March 24, 2004 ANA Signature Auction in Portland, Oregon contains an exquisite 1856 PR66 PCGS. Snow-5. According to Heritage Co-Chairman James Halperin, "The coin is very possibly the finest of the variety, which is saying something considering that Snow 5 examples, when encountered, often show up in gem grade. It's also unusually frosty and looks more like a business strike than a proof. The fact that Snow-5s are only known in proof is the sole way to tell that this coin is not mint state."

The coin is described as follows:

PR66 PCGS. Snow-5. Although Snow-5 shares the same reverse as the more available Snow-9 variety, the obverse die is different, and it features a mint-made point from the base of U in UNITED. The 1 in the date is centered between denticles, unlike Snow-9 which has the 1 centered above a denticle. Rick Snow in his Flying Eagle & Indian Cent Attribution Guide, 2nd Edition, Volume 1, 1856-1858 (2001) states that he believes the entire production of Snow-5 "traces its source to a hoard of up to 35 pieces that was kept intact since their striking." He also opines "it is now believed that coins from this die pair are some of the first examples of the 1856 Flying Eagle struck." Snow-2, 4, 7, 8, and 9 all share either the obverse and reverse die, and are believed to be struck later. The Gem status of this razor-sharp coin is irrefutable, and the luminous lemon, orange, and ruby-red surfaces are virtually as made, though to us the coin's frosty, cartwheel luster makes it look more like a circulation strike than a proof. Traces of a fingerprint fragment above the date prevent an even higher grade.

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