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    1856 Nine-Piece Proof Set, PR64-67
    All PCGS Secure and CAC-Endorsed

    1856 1/2 C Nine-Piece Proof Set, PR64-67. All PCGS Secure, All CAC-Endorsed. This significant early proof set is wonderfully preserved and well-matched. Previous NGC inserts also accompany the set. Included are:

    Half Cent PR66 Red and Brown Secure. CAC. B-3, R.4. Characterized by doubling on the T in CENT and doubling on the wreath. The fields are deeply mirrored and the rims are wide and squared off, as only seen on proofs. The surfaces display variegated cherry-red and blue color. The strike details are pinpoint-sharp throughout. A lovely, problem-free proof half cent. This is the finest proof 1856 certified at PCGS, regardless of color designation (1/16).

    Large Cent Slanted 5 PR66 Red and Brown Secure. CAC. N-5, Low R.5. While as many as 60 proofs exist of this late-date Braided Hair cent, relatively few are known in high grades and with significant portions of original red luster remaining. This piece ranks within the top 10 examples known. More red remains than brown, with only slight mellowing seen on the reverse and almost none evident on the obverse. Fully struck with deeply reflective fields and problem-free surfaces. Population: 3 Slanted 5 proofs in Red and Brown, none finer (1/16).

    Flying Eagle Cent PR64+ Secure. CAC. Snow-9. By far the most frequently encountered 1856 FEC variety, the Snow-9 coins are also among the most attractive. The original surfaces show the presence of 160 years of age with slight reddish-brown patina that partially subdues the mirrored reflectivity in the fields (more so on the obverse, however). The strike is crisp on each side and the only observable (barely) contact marks are two tiny ones seen in the field below the eagle.

    Three Cent Silver PR66 Secure. CAC. With no official records kept for proofs from the pre-1858 era, it is difficult to know how many pieces were actually minted. But the best estimate of survivors seems to be in the range of 30-40 pieces. This is unquestionably among the finest known. The fields are deeply mirrored with streaks of light reddish-russet patina in the center of each side and the margins surrounded by bright blue toning. PCGS has only certified one other piece at this level with none finer (1/16).

    Half Dime PR66 Cameo Secure. Gold CAC. Like the three cent silver, probably 30-40 proofs remain from whatever the original mintage may have been. Also, like the three cent silver above, this example is among the finest known. This is the finest Cameo of this date, and there are two PCGS-certified non-Cameo proofs. Such brightness is seen on this proof that at first glance it appears brilliant. But there are numerous light reddish-russet streaks of color seen across each side. The devices are heavily frosted, as expected, and they display stark contrast against the deep mirroring in the fields.

    Dime, Small Date, PR66 Cameo Secure. CAC. Fortin-101, High R.6. Doubled Obverse Die, Medium Level Date. This reverse die was used again in 1857, as seen by the die line through the R in AMERICA on both dates. PCGS has estimated that as many as 30-40 proofs may exist of the 1856 dime. The fields on this piece are exceptionally deep and reflective, making cameo contrast even more evident against the frosted devices. The centers are nearly brilliant, but the margins display rich reddish patina around each side. This is the finest of only three Cameo 1856 dimes certified by PCGS (1/16).

    Quarter PR67 Cameo Secure. CAC. Upright 5. Briggs 10-H. There may have been as many as 100 proof quarters struck in 1856. A surprisingly high percentage of proofs have survived with an estimated 75+ pieces believed known today. This is a radiant Cameo example with extraordinarily deep, mirrored fields and sharply contrasting frosted devices. The interior of each side is brilliant and surrounded by blue-golden color around the margins. A number of interesting die polishing marks are seen in the fields on both sides, the most interesting located above the eagle's right (facing) wing. This piece is far and away the finest Cameo certified as well as non-Cameo of this date by PCGS.

    Half Dollar PR66 Cameo Secure. CAC. The 1856 proof half dollar is a remarkably rare coin. There are no reliable estimates of the number struck, but perhaps as many as 20-25 pieces exist today in all grades. This example is tied for finest certified at PCGS (1/16). The fields are glassy-smooth and moderate mint frost over the devices provides the contrast necessary for the Cameo designation. As with the Flying Eagle cent, three cent silver, and half dime in this set, this piece also has faint streaks of golden-rose across the interior of each side. The margins display light golden and blue patina. Like the other coins in this remarkable proof set, problem-free.

    Seated Dollar PR66+ Cameo Secure. Gold CAC. What a remarkable coin. Pre-1858 proof coins are seldom encountered in any grade. This is the largest silver coin struck, in the highest grade obtainable at PCGS, and with a gold CAC sticker. For many, that is all they need to know. But there is more. Of the estimated 50-75 proofs believed known of this date, this is the finest certified by PCGS. The flashy proof fields set up a "black" background for the obviously frosted devices. Each side is golden-toned, more speckled in the centers and more solidly colored at the margins. Of special interest, though, is a long, perfectly straight graver's line that runs from the obverse rim under star 6 through the field, and into the opposite rim (faintly). We have never seen this previously and cannot imagine why the Coiner would trace a perfectly straight line across the obverse die. So, we not only have a coin of unparalleled quality at PCGS, but a proof worthy of study by an advanced numismatist.
    Selections from The Bob R. Simpson Collection.


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

    View all of [Selections from The Bob R. Simpson Collection ]

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    February, 2016
    4th-7th Thursday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 28
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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