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Rare 1855 Arrows Half Dime, PR66
Among the Finest Known
Ex: Kaufman

1855 H10C Arrows PR66 NGC. Ex: P. Kaufman. There is no official recorded mintage for the 1855 Arrows proof half dime. Indeed, Al Blythe (1992) says that proofs are "unverified." Most previous auction catalogers, however, believe that about 20 pieces were struck, and that about 15 have survived to the present day. David Akers (1997), on the other hand, estimates 50 to 60 were struck for inclusion in 1855 proof sets, with perhaps 25 to 30 coins known today. Based on the approximately 40 proof 1855 Arrows half dime appearances over the past 15 or so years that we are aware of (several of which are "reappearances"), along with the 27 pieces certified by NGC and PCGS (likely inflated by resubmissions), we believe that about 15-20 examples are extant.
Regardless of which figures may be correct, the present 1855 Arrows proof half dime is one of the four or five finest known. Current NGC/PCGS population figures show eight PR66 coins, and none finer, some likely resubmissions.
The following roster is based on the auction appearances with plates clear enough to match:

1. PR66 NGC. The present coin.
Ex: Phillip Kaufman; Platinum Night (Heritage, 4/2008), lot 2394. According to Kaufman's notes, this may be the Eliasberg coin (Bowers and Merena, 5/1996), lot 995, but a plate match is uncertain.
2. PR66 PCGS. Floyd T. Starr Collection (Stack's, 10/1992), lot 334; Baltimore '93 Auction (Superior, 7/1993), lot 155; Long Beach Sale (Heritage, 2/2005), lot 6157; Rarities Sale (Bowers and Merena, 7/2005), lot 369; Ira and Larry Goldberg (9/2005), lot 1609.
3. PR65 NGC. New York ANA (Superior, 8/2002), lot 715.
4. PR64 PCGS. Pre-Long Beach Sale (Ira and Larry Goldberg, 6/2002), lot 2079.
5. PR64 PCGS. Thomas Sebring Collection (American Numismatic Rarities, 1/2004), lot 1357.
6. PR64 NGC. Richmond Sale III (David Lawrence Rare Coins, 3/2005), lot 1092.
7. PR63 Numistrust. Pre-Long Beach (Superior, 9/2004), lot 1936. Catalogers say: "It is difficult to know 100% (if a proof) but the possibility exists in this case."
8. PR62 PCGS. Heritage (6/2005), lot 5340.
9. PR62 PCGS. Stack's (11/2006), lot 30.

Additional Citations:
A. PR66 NGC. Rarities Sale (Bowers and Merena, 7/2005), lot 370.
B. PR66 NGC. Pre-Long Beach (Superior, 2/2006), lot 459.
C. PR65 NGC. Pre-Long Beach (Superior, 10/2001), lot 1743.

Beautiful toning is seen in mixtures of cobalt-blue and reddish-gold splashed with whispers of lilac over both sides of this wonderful example from the Kaufman Collection. Crisply defined on the design features, leaving no elements with the slightest hint of weakness. The only pedigree identifier we can locate on the impeccably preserved surfaces is a faint linear mark from the left diagonal of the M in DIME that extends above the right upright of the same letter.
From The Joseph C. Thomas Collection.(Registry values: P3) (NGC ID# 235T, PCGS# 4433)

View all of [The Joseph C. Thomas Collection, Part One ]

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Auction Dates
Apr-May, 2009
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 5
Members Tracking: N/A
Page Views: 782

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