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    Pleasing Seven-Piece 1874 Proof Set

    1874 Seven-Piece Proof Set NGC. Most 1874 proof coins were struck early in the year. Of the 700 Trade dollars struck, 500 proofs were produced in the first four months, another 100 were minted in June, and the last 100 were split evenly between September and December. It is likely that 500 proof sets produced in the first few months were sold to collectors, with additional pieces minted on an as-needed basis. The 1874 proof set, at just seven pieces, is considerably smaller than that of 1873, with denominations such as the two cent piece, three cent silver, half dime, and Seated dollar left by the wayside.
    Proof mintages of the smaller denominations included 700 dimes, 850 quarters, and 750 half dollars. An unknown additional quantity of minor proofs (cent, three cent nickel, and nickel five cent) was produced for three coin sets; this figure is given as 700+ pieces traditionally, to allow for the possibility of single coins or non-silver proof sets.
    The temporary With Arrows design of 1873 continued throughout 1874 on the Seated Liberty silver coins, creating a two-year type coin. The 1874 With Arrows proof silver coins are relatively common and usually available at some moderate price level. Demand for these proof coins comes from a broad numismatic base that includes date collectors, proof set collectors, and type collectors.

    1874 Cent PR65 Red and Brown. With its warm copper-orange and reddish-peach patina, this sharply struck cent is decidedly more Red than Brown. Excellent surface preservation with only a handful of minor flaws visible under magnification, none of them materially affecting the eye appeal.

    1874 Three Cent Nickel PR66 Cameo.
    Each side has gleaming nickel-white surfaces with only a suggestion of champagne or coral-pink. Strongly struck with far richer frost on the portrait of Liberty than usually seen. An excellent Premium Gem. Census: 23 in 66 Cameo, 5 finer (10/09).

    1874 Nickel PR65.
    The obverse is strikingly contrasted beneath a thin layer of nickel-gray toning, but the reverse contrast falls short of Cameo standards. Nonetheless, this is a thoroughly appealing Gem that offers strong eye appeal for the grade. Definition is bold overall, though the lower right stars in the circle on the reverse are a trifle soft.

    1874 Dime PR64.
    The light gold-orange toning that graces a good deal of the obverse deepens considerably on the reverse. Boldly defined with potent mirrors that pierce the patina, though minor, scattered hairlines on each side preclude a finer designation.

    1874 Quarter PR63.
    Pale gold and silver-white color prevails in the centers, but the margins have sky-blue, orange, rose-violet, and umber shadings, with the deepest colors visible on the reverse. Sharply struck with considerable contrast on the reverse.

    1874 Half PR64.
    The most beautifully toned specimen in the set, this Choice proof has dazzling electric-blue borders on the obverse that have a short fade into violet before giving way to luminous gold-gray color at the centers. The latter two colors figure prominently on the reverse. Though not designated as a Cameo, each side has appreciable contrast.

    1874 Dollar PR64.
    Liquid blue, green, and gold peripheral colors yield to light silver-gray at the centers of this near-Gem. This exquisitely detailed example shows only a handful of modest flaws to the unaided eye, though these few hairlines are sufficient to account for the grade.
    From The Boca Collection, Part One.


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

    View all of [The Boca Collection, Part I ]

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    January, 2010
    6th-10th Wednesday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 9
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,066

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