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Description

1842 Small Date, Small Letters Half, VF20
Extremely Rare, Discovery Coin
Perhaps Four Known

1842 50C Small Date, Small Letters VF20 PCGS. Discovery coin for the variety. Also known as the Reverse of 1839, and is certified as such on the PCGS insert. Christian Gobrecht's original obverse design for the Seated Liberty half dollar featured small digits in the date, a design that was used from 1839 through early 1842; later in 1842, the Medium Date die came into use.
The original reverse design of the Seated Liberty half dollar featured small letters in UNITED STATES OF AMERICA and HALF DOL. Prior to the discovery of the present variety, this reverse design had been identified on all 1839 Seated Liberty, 1840 (P), 1840-O, 1841, and 1841-O half dollars, as well as on some 1842-O examples. At the time of the discovery of this coin, it was the only 1842-dated example with the Small Letters Reverse of 1839 known from the Philadelphia Mint. A few other pieces have been discovered since, including one MS64 PCGS example, but it remains quite rare; PCGS CoinFacts shows a Condition Census of only four coins ranging from MS64 to Good 6, including the present piece. Heritage issued a press release on April 4, 2001, announcing the discovery.
The coin itself is a problem-free VF that has light gray patina over each side. The only mark of note that might be used for pedigree purposes is a milling mark between the eagle's beak and the A in STATES. (PCGS# 6241)


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Auction Info

Auction Dates
January, 2013
9th-14th Wednesday-Monday
Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 6
Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
Page Views: 423

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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.

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