1843 50C PR66 Cameo NGC....
The Finest Known Specimen
Our roster is consistent with estimates of previous researchers. Randy Wiley and Bill Bugert, in their Liberty Seated Half Dollars reference, suggest that less than six 1843 proof half dollars are known. Walter Breen, in his Encyclopedia of United States and Colonial Proof Coins, lists six examples. Likewise, NGC and PCGS have certified a total of six coins.
Our research into auction appearances of the 1843 proof half dollar, along with that of previous catalogers, results in the following roster:
1. PR66 Cameo NGC. The Kaufman coin. Previously from Dr. Christian Allenburger Collection (B. Max Mehl, 3/1948), lot 1103; McPherson Collection (Stack's, 2/1953), lot 924; Charles A. Cass Collection; Empire Sale (Stack's, 11/1957), lot 1361.
2. PR64 NGC. Numismatic Gallery, June 1947; John Jay Pittman Collection (David Akers, 5/1998), lot 1527; Bowers and Merena (7/2002), lot 305; Superior (1/2004), lot 385; George "Buddy" Byers Collection (Stack's, 10/2006), lot 1126; Heritage (5/2007), lot 2137.
3. PR64 NGC. Judge Joseph F. Sawicki (5/1948); John Jay Pittman Collection (David Akers, 10/1997), lot 832 (part of an 1843 Proof Set); Richmond Sale, Part III (David Lawrence Rare Coins, 3/2005), lot 1788.
4. Brilliant Proof. World's Greatest Collection (Numismatic Gallery, 3/1945), lot 261; 1946 ANA Sale (Numismatic Gallery, 8/1946), lot 817; Stack's (3/1965), lot 444.
5. Brilliant Proof. Will W. Neil Collection (B. Max Mehl, 6/1947); Amon G. Carter, Jr. Family Collection (Stack's, 1/1984), lot 630 (part of an 1843 Proof Set).
6. Proof. Smithsonian Institution.
Both sides of this Premium Gem Cameo half dollar are remarkably well matched with beautiful low-intensity toning dominated by soft golden-tan, accented by splashes of lavender and aqua-blue in the border areas. An exacting strike results in crisp delineation on the design features, further enhancing the cameo contrast, which stands out regardless of the angle at which the coin is observed. Added to these exquisite attributes are the immaculately preserved surfaces. All in all, a majestic coin that will delight the new owner.
A die crack, diagnostic of all proof 1843 half dollars, bisects the reverse. The crack runs from the rim between ES of STATES through the eagle's head, upper left part of the shield, left (facing) leg, and tail to the rim between LF of HALF.
From The Phil Kaufman Collection of Early Proof Sets, Part Four. (PCGS# 86387)
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The Draped Bust Half Dollars of 1796-1797 by Jon Amato is the culmination of more than 10 years of research into the Draped Bust Small Eagle half dollar series, one of the most coveted type coins in American numismatics and one about which remarkably little has been written.
This work will be the premier reference for 1796-1797 half dollars for years to come. Institutions having an extensive numismatic library or coin cabinet will find it a valuable complement to their holdings, and catalogers charged with writing up specimens for auction can now have an indispensable source of background and pedigree information. Likewise, coin dealers seeking to purchase one or more '96 or '97 half dollars for a client or for inventory, and collectors who own, have owned, or desire to own one will want this important reference work for their libraries.
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