1856 $1 MS60 NGC. Breen-5454. Although produced in ...
Mint State 1856 Silver Dollar, Overdate (Breen-5454) Variety1856 $1 MS60 NGC. Breen-5454. Although produced in greater numbers, the 1856 (63,500 pieces) is more difficult to locate than the 1855 in circulated grades. In Mint State, both issues are similar in rarity, and both are underappreciated by most collectors in today's hobby. The present example is one of only 20 Uncirculated coins certified by NGC and PCGS (1/02). Both sides are golden tinted with an average strike for a Seated Dollar from this era. Liberty's head and chest, as well as the eagle's left (facing) leg feathers display noteworthy softness of detail. Scattered light to moderate abrasions account for the MS60 designation, there are some interesting die breaks (as struck) around the reverse periphery.
Writing in 1988, Breen acknowledged the existence of an 1856/4 overdate Seated Dollar. This variety, described as "extremely rare" by the author, has the following characteristic: "Plain straight line (crossbar of 4) within 6." In the July 1995 issue of The Gobrecht Journal, Carl Ingraffia published an article entitled "The 1856/4 Seated Dollar: Fact or Myth." Ingraffia pictured the date area of an 1856/4 Seated Dollar and gave some diagnostics of this variety. It would appear that Breen's use of the term "crossbar" is erroneous, and what is really evident is a diagonal segment within the upper loop of the 6. The Silverman specimen offered here displays this segment, and its other diagnostics also match those given by Ingraffia. Certainly an example that is worthy of study by Seated Dollar specialists. (NGC ID# 24YV, PCGS# 6944)
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