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    Description

    1792 Judd-7 Half Disme, XF40
    Attractive, Lightly Colored Surfaces

    1792 H10C Half Disme, Judd-7, Pollock-7, R.4 XF40 PCGS Secure. More than 200 years of legend and myth surround the striking of the 1792 half dismes. A great deal of embellishment and outright fabrication seem to have been attached to these coins in the 1850s and 1860s. More than likely the greatest perpetuator of these legends and myths was Mint Director James Ross Snowden. Two of the more fanciful and widely held beliefs are that Martha Washington was the model for Liberty and the coins were struck from George and Martha Washington's silver tableware.

    In 2003, Joel Orosz and Carl Herkowitz separated much of the fact from fantasy regarding these coins in a well-researched article in the ANS' American Journal of Numismatics. Much of what we know today was based on an obscure tipped-in note found in a European coin book in 1943. The signature was faded, but the authors identified the author as John McAllister, Jr. McAllister was a close friend of Adam Eckfeldt, a primary source for the half dismes, as he was present at their striking. The note read:

    "In conversation with Mr. Adam Eckfeldt (Apr 9, 1844) at the Mint, he informed me that the Half Dismes above described, were struck, expressly for Gen. Washington, to the extent of One Hundred Dollars, which sum he deposited in Bullion or Coin, for the purpose. Mr. E. thinks that Gen. W. distributed them as presents. Some were sent to Europe, but the greater number, he believes, were given to friends of Gen. W. in Virginia. No more of them were ever coined. They were never designed as Currency. The Mint was not, at the time, fully ready for being put into operation. The Coining Machinery was in the cellar of Mr. Harper, saw maker, at the corner of Cherry and 6th Sts, at which place these pieces were struck."



    While half dismes were struck for "friends of Gen. W. in Virginia" many of them were used as currency at the time. This is obviously one of them. The surfaces show even wear over the high points and attractive light rose-lilac patina. A few shallow field marks are obvious when closely examined, but not apparent when viewed at arm's length. None of the usually encountered planchet flaws interrupt the surfaces of this attractive XF example.
    From The Palos Verdes Collection, Part I.(Registry values: P9) (NGC ID# D93T, PCGS# 11020)


    Learn more at the Newman Numismatic Portal at Washington University in St. Louis.

    View all of [The Palos Verdes Collection, Part II ]

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    Auction Dates
    August, 2016
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    Numismatic Background and Census of 1802 Half Dimes: A Classic American Rarity
    This 64-page book cites mintage and rarity estimates by prominent numismatists and documents the currently known 1802 half dime appearances. Each of the 32 documented examples includes an enlarged obverse/reverse photograph, the author's assigned grade, the provenance of each coin, auction prices realized or dealer fixed asking price, and a unique serial number for each specimen that will facilitate retrieval for research, cataloging, or price-information purposes. Reserve your copy of this remarkable volume for just $29.95 today.
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