Condition Census 1805 Half Dime AU581805 H10C AU58 PCGS. V-1, LM-1, R.4. The only dies for this difficult date. Just 15,600 pieces were struck for the issue, which was the final entry in the Draped Bust, Heraldic Eagle type. Half dime production did not resume until 1829, when the Capped Bust design was employed. The 1805 issue circulated extensively, and PCGS has graded pieces as low as Good 4. None have been certified by PCGS in Mint State, and NGC has encapsulated only one such piece, in the remarkable grade of MS65. Since that piece may remain off the market for generations, even the advanced collector will have to settle for a near-Mint example.
This generally lustrous representative has rich apple-green toning throughout most of the obverse, though the center has a window of light golden-brown. The reverse is even more colorful, and features forest-green borders with the interiors composed of powder-blue, chestnut-tan, and plum iridescence. The strike is impressive for the Draped Bust type, since softness is generally limited to the bust truncation, and the right (facing) wingtip. Thorough evaluation beneath a light and a strong loupe locates only a small spot beneath the right pendant of the second T in STATES, and a pair of minor, hair-thin marks near 7 o'clock on the obverse. These imperfections are no consequence for the Borderline Uncirculated grade, and this piece would merit a place of honor within even the most advanced cabinet of early silver U.S. coinage.
The die state is typical for an 1805, with a small, rising break beneath the date that continues to the right until it reaches the bust. The reverse dies are perfect save for clashes near the eagle's head and the U in UNITED. These clashes actually occurred prior to the 1805 production. The reverse die was first used to strike the 1803 LM-3 variety, and the Logan-McCloskey photographs for this pairing plainly show the clashmarks, although the reference does not mention the clash marks, either under 1803 LM-3 or 1805 LM-1. We were priviledged to sell the Price plate coin (NGC AU58) in our FUN Sale last year. This coin has a signficantly better strike and more luster than that coin. Population: 3 in 58, 0 finer (10/06).(Registry values: P7) (NGC ID# 232A, PCGS# 4272)
Weight: 1.35 grams
Metal: 89.24% Silver, 10.76% Copper
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