Important 1794 Dollar, XF401794 $1 XF40 NGC. B-1, BB-1. Die State I. The 1794 Dollar has always been in strong demand from numismatists and collectors alike. This has perhaps never been more evident than over the last three to five years. With an estimate of surviving examples somewhere between 120 and 140 specimens (per the late Jack Collins), demand usually exceeds supply for this prized first Silver Dollar from the U.S. Mint.
The 1794 is the first regular issue Dollar to be struck with the early Mint's new Flowing Hair design. The late Walter Breen believed that the 1794 Dollars were most likely struck on October 15, 1794, from deposits of silver bullion made by David Rittenhouse, who had been appointed Director of the Mint in 1792. Most numismatists agree that only 1,758 Dollars were struck in 1794. These Dollars were struck on a press intended for striking smaller denomination coins; therefore, most impressions show varying degrees of weakness of strike. It is also believed that at some point the dies became misaligned, resulting in weakness of strike being evident at UNITED STATES, the left stars, and the date. Striking problems are seen on almost all specimens of the 1794 Dollar. Additionally, most of the Dollars of 1794 suffer from surface problems, such as scratches, dents, rim bumps, having been holed and plugged, initials or counterstamps removed, and other miscellaneous problems or repairs. Plus, a majority of known 1794 Dollars come with adjustment marks.
The specimen offered here is graded XF40 NGC, and is an above average example of the issue. This specimen is toned a pleasing medium gray on both sides. The strike is above average, with the stars on the left side of the obverse all showing (although weak). The date and star 1 are particularly well struck for a 1794 Dollar. Adjustment marks are present, primarily on the left side of the obverse, and are heaviest through stars 2, 3, and 4. There is a tiny planchet disturbance in the field in front of Liberty's nose. There is also a slight rim disturbance at 8 o'clock on the obverse, between stars 1 and 2 and closer to star 2. The surfaces are nice for the grade and well above average for the issue. The left side of the obverse is toned slightly darker than the rest of the coin, from star 3 down through the date area and to last two stars on the right.
The reverse shows the weakness of strike on the left side through UNITED STAT that is usually seen. There appear to be a few minor rim disturbances. The reverse surfaces are very nice for the grade, with strong details showing on the eagle's wings and tail feathers. A small scratch is located below the ribbon, well hidden by the toning, and a small planchet disturbance is seen at the top left of the second S in STATES.
From the Michael Hering Collection. (NGC ID# 24WY, PCGS# 6851)
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