1877 Pattern Half Dollar, PR67
1877 50C Morgan Half Dollar, Judd-1506, Pollock-1660, High R.7,
PR67 NGC. CAC.
Single Finest Known
Design. The obverse is essentially a miniature of Morgan's famous dollar design, dated 1877. The reverse has an eagle on top of a seven-sided shield, the motto IN GOD WE TRUST to the left, above, and right of the shield. This entire design is enclosed within a wreath with UNITED STATES OF AMERICA around and HALF DOLLAR below. Struck in silver with a reeded edge.
Commentary. Judd-1506 is one of the many beautiful pattern half dollar designs created by George Morgan and William Barber in 1877. At least 44 different half dollar patterns were struck in 1877, and collecting the different issues is one of the most challenging specialties in American numismatics. Judd-1506 is known with two obverse dies, easily distinguished by the length of the leaf under I in PLURIBUS. Andrew Pollock differentiated between the two varieties, designating the variety with the shorter leaf Pollock-1660 and the longer leaf Pollock-1668. This coin represents the slightly more numerous Pollock-1660 issue, with four examples traced by present-day numismatists (see roster below). The Pollock-1668 subtype is known in only two examples, but they have appeared at public auction with greater frequency than Pollock-1660 in recent years. The Newman specimen is the finest known example of Judd-1506 regardless of variety.
Physical Description. This magnificent Superb Gem is spectacularly toned in vivid shades of greenish-gray and champagne-gold, with a ring of cerulean-blue at the peripheries of both sides. As almost always seen on this issue, the central reverse shows some incomplete detail, but the obverse devices are well-struck and frosty. The deeply mirrored fields shine through the patina with exceptional eye appeal. This lot represents an unparalleled opportunity for the advanced pattern collector.
Roster of Pollock-1660.
1. PR67 NGC. Eric P. Newman; the present coin.
2. PR66 PCGS. Gaston DiBello Collection (Stack's, 5/1970), lot 384; Rudy Sieck Collection (Bowers and Ruddy, 1981 ANA), lot 229; Baltimore Auction (Superior, 7/1993), lot 680.
3. PR65 PCGS. Dr. J. Hewitt Judd; Judd Collection (Stack's, 3/1980), lot 714; M. Hagen; Simpson Collection.
4. PR63 PCGS. King Farouk; Palace Collections of Egypt (Sotheby's, 2/1954), lot 1970; Thomas Bergin Collection (Stack's, 6/1984), lot 1243; Numismatic Auction Sales and Consulting (Andy Lustig, 6/1986).
Roster of Pollock-1668.
1. PR65 PCGS. Dr. Edward Maris Collection (H.P. Smith, 6/1886), lot 193; Garrett Collection (Stack's, 3/1976), lot 635; Morris Evans Collection (Bowers and Merena, 8/1998), lot 2075; Elite Coin Auction (Superior,7/2003), lot 459; M. Hagen; R. Kay.
2. PR63 PCGS. Philadelphia ANA (Ira S. Reed, 8/1941), lot 111; Monroe Collection; Armand Champa Collection (Bowers and Ruddy, 5/1972), lot 1060; Harry W. Bass, Jr. Collection (Bowers and Merena, 5/1999), lot 1217; Superior FPL (7/1999); Pre-Long Beach Sale (Superior, 9/1999); New York ANA (Superior, 8/2002), lot 1797 (listed as Pollock-1660 in the catalog, but image is Pollock-1668); FUN Signature (Heritage, 1/2007), lot 1535.
From The Eric P. Newman Collection. (NGC ID# 26X3, PCGS# 61841)
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