Description

    Pleasing 1878 Half Eagle Pattern in Copper
    Judd-1571, PR62 Brown

    1878 $5 Five Dollar, Judd-1571, Pollock-1765, Low R.7, PR62 Brown NGC.
    Design.
    The central figure of the obverse die is a head of Liberty facing left, with her hair tied in a bun. A band confining the hair is inscribed LIBERTY. The motto E PLURIBUS UNUM, punctuated by pellets, extends around the periphery, with the date below. The reverse features an upright eagle holding an olive branch and three arrows. The peripheral inscriptions are UNITED STATES OF AMERICA and FIVE DOL. IN GOD WE TRUST is inscribed in the field between the eagle and the motto. Struck in copper with a reeded edge.

    Commentary.
    The issue was coined on a larger diameter planchet than the regular-issue coinage (25.5 mm compared to 21.6 mm). This experimental large, thin planchet was probably an attempt to reduce metal shaving around the rim. The thin planchet may have caused striking problems, or the diameter may have been too close to the 27-mm eagle, causing confusion with that coin. For whatever reason, this measure was never adopted for regular-issue coinage. Judd-1571 is a rare issue today, with perhaps a half dozen examples extant.

    Physical Description.
    The present specimen is well struck, with the slightest bit of softness on the eagle's breast that is often seen on this issue. Muted red and blue-gray toning create outstanding eye appeal. There are a minimum of handling marks for the grade. Altogether, a pleasing example of this rare and popular pattern. NGC Census: Two coins total -- this piece and a PR67 Brown Cameo. PCGS Population: Three coins ranging from PR63 Red and Brown to PR65 Brown (12/08).

    Provenance.
    Unknown.
    From The Lemus Collection, Queller Family Collection Part Two.
    (NGC ID# 2AFT, PCGS# 61934)


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

    View all of [The Lemus Collection, Queller Family Collection Part Two ]

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    Auction Dates
    January, 2009
    7th-11th Wednesday-Sunday
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