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Lot
2139

1776 $1 Continental Dollar, CURRENCY, Pewter MS62 PCGS....

2008 May Long Beach, CA Signature Auction #1108

 
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Auction Ended On: May 29, 2008
Item Activity: 7 Internet/mail/phone bidders
10,736 page views
Location:

Long Beach Convention Center
100 S. Pine Avenue
Long Beach, CA 90802

Lot Viewing:
Room 103B,C (Tuesday Only)
Booth 400 (Wednesday - Saturday)

Auction Room:
Room 103B,C

Description:
Important MS62 Pewter Continental Dollar
CURRENCY, Newman 2-C
1776 $1 Continental Dollar, CURRENCY, Pewter MS62 PCGS. Crosby Pl. VIII, 16, Newman 2-C, Breen-1092, R.3. Struck from perfect dies, without the rust often seen for this die marriage within the rings for Pennsylvania, Maryland, and New Hampshire. The second obverse die for the series, which corrects the CURENCY misspelling. The reverse die is the same used to strike the earlier die pairings, although the beaded rings seen on the extremely rare Newman 1-A and 1-B were reshaped by the mint engraver into the unbeaded links present on Newman 1-C.
Researchers now believe that the Continental dollars were struck as patterns, intended to replace lower denominations of Continental Currency. Evidence for this comes from the designs themselves, which are similar to those on the February 17, 1776 notes. Eric Newman also noted that the dollar denomination was absent from issues of Continental Currency between July 1776 and September 1778. Although most Continental dollars are struck in pewter or tin, some are struck in silver, which is presumably the intended alloy had the series lasted beyond the pattern stage. Of course, the shortage of specie was the root cause of the issuance of Continental Currency to begin with. Had Continental dollars been issued in silver in quantity, they would have soon traded at a significant premium to their equivalent in unbacked Continental Currency.
The present piece is a magnificent example of this important Continental Currency pattern. Generally pearl-gray, with slightly deeper dove-gray noted on the left reverse. Satin luster shimmers across both sides, and spots are minimal, limited to minor specks near the first R in CURRENCY, the O in CONTINENTAL, and on the reverse border near the Rhode Island ring.
The reverse is beautifully smooth, and on its own merits a higher grade. The obverse is also undisturbed, aside from two pinscratches within the inner ring that show occasional evidence of faint smoothing. Continental dollars are often encountered circulated, corroded, repaired, or damaged, and the present lustrous and bold example is certain to be the centerpiece of an important Early American holding. Encapsulated in a green label holder, and listed on page 81 of the 2009 Guide Book. (PCGS# 794)

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