1859 P50C Half Dollar, Judd-243, Pollock-299, High R.7, PR63 NGC....
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Judd-243, High R.7
Design. Referred to as Longacre's "French Liberty Head" design. A Romanesque bust of Liberty faces right, with a crown of intertwined oak and vine leaves. Around her neck is a scroll inscribed with the word LIBERTY. UNITED STATES OF AMERICA fills the peripheral fields with the date below. A regular Type Two reverse die--with LF of HALF spaced apart at their tops--was used to strike Judd-243 and Judd-244 patterns. Struck in silver with a reeded edge.
Commentary. Pollock (1994) lists three confirmed specimens, including the current offering, as well as two other possible Judd-243 patterns. A review of auction appearances from 1990 through 2005, as documented in the Dannreuther-Garrett Red Book of Auction Records, identifies only two examples having crossed the auction block during that 16-year timeframe. Thus, the generally accepted rarity rating of High R.7 seems to be accurate. In fact USPatterns.com, which is the most current source of pattern rarity ratings, suggests that "about half a dozen [pieces are] known." Without question, this is a rare issue.
Physical Description. Richly patinated on both sides and featuring crisply defined details. Pollock documented this piece at 192.1 grains, 1.198 inches in diameter, with a die alignment of 180 degrees. NGC Census: This is the only specimen of Judd-243 graded by NGC. PCGS Population: 2 in PR63, 1 finer (12/08).
Provenance. Ex: Massachusetts Historical Society (Stack's, 3/1973), lot 342.
From The Lemus Collection, Queller Family Collection Part Two. (PCGS# 11984)
Service and Handling Description: Coins & Currency (view shipping information)