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    1795 Flowing Hair Half Dime, Toned MS66
    V-5, LM-8, Semiprooflike Fields
    Superb Type Coin

    1795 H10C V-5, LM-8, R.3, MS66 PCGS. CAC. The 1795 is by far the more available of the two Flowing Hair half dime issues, ideal for type purposes. The recorded mintage figure is 86,416 pieces, although it is believed most if not all of the 7,756 pieces delivered on March 30 were struck from 1794-dated dies; no half dime coinage occurred in 1794, meaning that the entirety of that issue was produced early in 1795. This leaves a net mintage of 78,660 pieces for the 1795-dated issue.

    Mint State survivors of the 1795 half dime are moderately plentiful, per certified population data, although a number of resubmissions are likely reflected. Even so, in Gem or finer condition the issue is rare, and pieces grading finer than MS66 are almost unobtainable. Various sources speak of a small hoard of Mint State 1795 half dimes that turned up in the latter half of the 19th century, although the exact number of coins represented and the exact date when they were discovered varies from writer to writer. Dubbed the "Wadsworth-Rea hoard" by Breen in his Encyclopedia, the group might have contained up to 100 examples or as few as a dozen. Per Bowers, W. Elliot Woodward suggested that the hoard was dispersed in the 1860s or '70s; Breen suggests Woodward himself bought and dispersed the coins circa 1880. Exact details are impossible to pinpoint at this time.

    The present coin is sharply rendered and displays lovely semiprooflike fields, although not quite to the extent as is seen on Breen's "presentation" pieces. Nonetheless, this delicately preserved and deeply toned example is undoubtedly among the finer-known survivors of this early Mint product. Hints of gold and mint-green highlight otherwise ocean-blue surfaces, while a small area of lavender is also seen on the lower obverse. Struck from mildly rotated dies. Whether or not this piece originated in the 1860s hoard is not known, although it was clearly carefully preserved from the day of striking, either out of sentiment or for some special occasion. A truly rare and important acquisition. Population, all varieties included: 11 in 66 (2 in 66+), 2 finer. CAC: 7 in 66, 1 finer (3/18).
    Ex: ANA Signature (Heritage, 8/2015), lot 3978. (NGC ID# 22ZV, Variety PCGS# 38592, Base PCGS# 4251)

    Weight: 1.35 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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    Auction Dates
    April, 2018
    25th-29th Wednesday-Sunday
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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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