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1796 Dime, Iridescent-Toned Gem JR-1
Vibrant, Satiny Mint Luster

1796 10C MS65 PCGS Secure. JR-1, R.3. The U.S. Mint struck its first silver half dimes of the Flowing Hair style in 1794-95 (the 1792 "Martha Washington" style half dismes were struck on Mint presses but not in the Mint facility, which had not yet been built), but it would be 1796 before the Mint finally issued a full suite of coinage, including every then-authorized denomination from the lowly half cent to the majestic gold eagle. That suite also included the first silver dimes, of the Draped Bust style that had superseded the Flowing Hair motif by that time. The Small Eagle reverse remained, however, on dimes of the 1796 and 1797 issues, before ceding to the Heraldic Eagle reverse on the 1798- and later-dated dimes.
The JR-1 die pairing is here represented by an incredible Gem example. The seven known die marriages comprise six obverse dies and five reverse dies, of which the JR-1 is the most frequently seen. On the obverse LIBERTY is unevenly spaced, IB nearly touching at their bottoms and widely separated at their tops. The tops of TY nearly touch. Virtually all examples show a die cud break at star 1 -- here in about the same state as that shown in the JR dime book. On the reverse, two leaf points appear under the A in STATES. This piece displays vibrant satiny mint luster complementing iridescent champagne-gold and violet toning with an added touch of amber on the reverse. Extensive die cracks appear on both sides as noted in the book, most noticeably the crack from the E in STATES through the leaf, eagle's head, right wing, and field. The strike is sharply detailed in most areas, although the coin shows some slight softness in the centers, like most late impressions from these dies. Only minor signs of contact appear, and no adjustment marks occur on either side. Population: 5 in 65, 8 finer (9/12).(Registry values: P7) (NGC ID# 236B, PCGS# 4461)

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Auction Dates
October, 2012
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 10
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