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    Description

    1794 C-9, B-9 Half Cent, MS64 Red and Brown
    High Condition Census
    Continuous Provenance from 1794 or 1795

    1794 High Relief Head, C-9, B-9, R.2, MS64 Red and Brown NGC. CAC. Our EAC grade MS64. Breen Die State IV. Manley Die State 3.0. This lovely Choice Mint State piece ranks high among those known today, perhaps second or third finest. The Breen-Hanson Condition Census, now nearly three decades old, includes 11 examples from this die pair that grade Uncirculated. However, six of those have a recorded provenance that ends 60 years ago or more, pointing to the need for an up-to-date published Condition Census for all half cents. Substantial mint red remains on the flawless light brown surfaces of this lovely example that does not appear in the Breen-Hanson Census as it was not known at the time of that publication.

    New research gives this coin a continuous provenance back to the time that it was made. William Strickland acquired two 1794 half cents, both the same variety, during his visit to the United States for several months in 1794 and 1795. This piece and others were acquired between September 20, 1794, when he arrived in New York, and July 29, 1795, when he departed for England. The present coin and the other 1794 C-9 half cent share honors for the oldest pedigreed half cents known.

    Confusion about the interesting Lord St. Oswald provenance began with an October 1964 sale of pristine U.S. coins conducted by Christie's of London. The consignor was identified as Sir Rowland Winn, also known as Major the Lord St. Oswald. The coins were said to be obtained at the time of issue directly from the Philadelphia Mint by his ancestor, also identified as Major the Lord St. Oswald, M.C. However, three decades later, research determined that the St. Oswald title didn't exist prior to 1885, and the Military Cross (M.C.) decoration didn't exist until 1914. Additional groups of coins from the same collection appeared in 1981 and in 1992.

    Fast forward to 2015, when numismatic researcher David Tripp offered the now accepted theory that the coins originated with Sir William Strickland, 6th Baronet of Boynton. In his article that appeared in the Stack's Bowers September 2015 catalog of the D. Brent Pogue Collection, Tripp writes:

    "New Research, archival, numismatic, and genealogical, has produced a compelling body of circumstantial evidence that the St. Oswald coins were originally acquired by William Strickland (1753-1834), later 6th Baronet of Boynton. He paid a lengthy visit to the United States in 1794-1795, and was a member of the Winn family through which the coins descended until their sale."



    The story of Lord St. Oswald and his collection of coins was widely discounted, but is now proven to be rather accurate, even if titles were uncertain when the first group of coins appeared for sale in 1964.
    Ex: William Strickland Collection (acquired before July 29, 1795); Charles Winn (son-in-law and first cousin, once removed, of William Strickland); Rowland Winn (1st Baron St Oswald of Nostell); Rowland Winn (2nd Baron St Oswald of Nostell); Rowland George Winn (3rd Baron St Oswald of Nostell); Rowland Denys Guy Winn (Major the Lord St Oswald, M.C.); Derek Edward Anthony Winn (5th Baron St. Oswald); Coins and Medals (Christie, Manson & Woods, Ltd., London, 2/1992); R.E. Naftzger, Jr. Collection; Eric Streiner (4/3/1992); Donald G. Partrick.

    Note: The new information creates a little additional confusion, as a different individual named William Strickland, a Philadelphia native, was an architect who designed the second Philadelphia Mint building as well as the New Orleans Mint building.

    Coin Index Numbers: (Variety PCGS# 35064, Base PCGS# 35055)

    Weight: 6.74 grams

    Metal: 100% Copper


    View all of [The Donald G. Partrick Collection ]

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