1803 Dime, Colorful AU58
1803 10C JR-4, R.5, AU58 NGC. Colorfully toned in blushes of
orange, blue, rose, violet, and yellow, this nearly Uncirculated
1803 dime features strongly struck design motifs with a touch of
softness on the left obverse stars and the olive leaves. E PLURIBUS
UNUM is fully legible, and the breast and wing feathers are
complete. There are numerous clash marks and die cracks throughout,
suggesting a later die state.
JR-4, Virtually Unobtainable Any Finer
Variety: JR-4, R.5. A rare variety. The 0 and 3 in the date are widely spaced, and the upright of the E in STATES is far left of the space between the clouds.
Population Data (9/15): Regardless of variety, this dime is tied with one other AU58 submission at NGC. Finer examples at that service include two MS61 coins, one MS63, and one MS64. PCGS reports five in AU58 (one AU58+) and one MS64 finer, again disregarding varieties.
Heritage Commentary: The 1803 may fly under the radar of many collectors, but it is one of the most challenging issues to acquire in XF condition or better. While the reported mintage amounts to 33,040 coins, the Early United States Dimes reference (1984) states that the actual mintage is probably closer to 10,000 or 12,000 pieces. To that point, American Numismatic Rarities noted when this example last appeared for sale 10 years ago: "If, as a date, AU-58 1803 dimes are rarer than similarly graded 1794 dollars, 1796 quarter eagles, 1793 Chain cents, or other expensive rarities, this coin seems grossly undervalued and certain to be more prized by future generations of collectors." While those are undeniably among the most historically significant federal coinage issues, the 1803 dime certainly holds its own in terms of rarity and numismatic importance.
Provenance: William H. LaBelle, Sr. Collection (American Numismatic Rarities, 7/2005), lot 984. (NGC ID# 236L, Variety PCGS# 38765, Base PCGS# 4473)
Weight: 2.70 grams
Metal: 89.24% Silver, 10.76% Copper
Learn more at the Newman Numismatic Portal at Washington University in St. Louis.
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