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    Description

    Rare and Highly Desirable 1880 Stella
    Judd-1658, Copper Striking, Gilt

    1880 $4 Flowing Hair Four Dollar, Judd-1658, Pollock-1858, Low R.7--Copper, Gilt--Genuine PCGS. Struck in copper with a reeded edge. Although not graded by PCGS and simply labeled as Genuine, we believe this piece to be PR60 with altered surfaces. The gilt overlay is nicely done, with no apparent flakes or prominent blemishes. Many collectors are familiar with the design of the stella, which features a flowing haired Liberty facing left on the obverse and a five-pointed star surrounded by text on the reverse. It is interesting that the denomination is written in three different ways on the reverse: ONE STELLA, 400 CENTS, and FOUR DOL.
    The incomparable Flowing Hair stella, designed by Charles Barber, was proposed to serve as an alternative for several foreign coins of the same size. One of several Congressional proposals for an international trade coin, the stella was never adopted for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is its odd-denomination that is so popular among collectors today. The 1880 stellas are often overshadowed by their 1879-dated counterpart, which is significantly more available in gold. Copper examples are extremely rare, with a population of only 10 examples of the present variety known according to the ninth edition of United States Pattern Coins. In nearly 15 years of record-keeping, this is only the eighth time a Judd-1658 has been offered at auction by Heritage.
    This desirable piece still has lovely eye appeal despite altered surfaces. Pleasing lemon-yellow patina encircles the perimeter and contrasts against the streaks of milky-gold across the centers. Liberty's hair is a trifle soft, but the rest of the details are powerfully impressed. Strong, watery reflectivity shimmers throughout the surfaces. Nearly any collector can speak to the desirability of a stella, and most can only dream of owning one. Serious consideration should be given before the opportunity to acquire this seldom-offered rarity is missed.

    Coin Index Numbers: (NGC ID# 2AJF, PCGS# 62043)


    View Certification Details from PCGS

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    September, 2008
    17th-21st Wednesday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 24
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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