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    Description

    1853 Seated Liberty Half, PR65
    Very Rare Arrows and Rays Proof
    Ex: Eliasberg

    1853 50C Arrows and Rays PR65 NGC. WB-101. Ex: Eliasberg. This magnificent Gem proof exhibits sharp definition on all design elements except for slight softness on the left (facing) eagle's claw. The deeply reflective surfaces are blanketed in attractive shades of champagne-gold toning and show only a few minor hairlines. A coin with top-notch eye appeal.

    Variety: WB-101, the only variety listed.

    Population Data (7/14): NGC reports three proof coins: the Norweb piece in PR66, this specimen in PR65, and another in PR63. PCGS shows five proofs, one in PR65 and two each in PR64 and PR63.

    Heritage Commentary: This coin is a rarity of the highest magnitude, pedigreed to the Eliasberg Collection, one of the most prestigious assemblages of U.S. coins ever formed. The description from that landmark sale reads in part:

    "A spectacular specimen. Champagne and light golden toning over deeply mirrored surfaces. Exceedingly rare, incredibly so. This is one of just two or three we have seen over a period spanning many years. Here, indeed, is one of the most awesome, one of the greatest Proof rarities in the half dollar series. In his Proof Encyclopedia, Walter Breen offers very little in the way of information concerning characteristics of Proof specimens, mentioning in passing five examples, some of which may be duplicate listings ... .

    "In 1853 there were very few Proof coins struck of any denomination. Apparently, no original Proof sets were produced. Later, circa 1860, pioneer collector George Jones commented that there were no Proof 1853 Liberty Seated silver dollars known to exist, and, accordingly, around this time the Mint obligingly restruck 12 Proofs ... ."



    Proof quarters and half dollars are extremely rare, so much so that at one point some 20 years ago they were only rumored, but very few advanced collectors or dealers had actually seen one. At that time also, there was some confusion between real proofs and prooflike first strikes. There is no doubt about this coin, though. The depth of mirrored reflectivity is complete on each side and covers all the recessed areas in the fields. A very rare opportunity to acquire this extremely rare proof striking

    Roster of Proof 1853 Arrows and Rays Half Dollars
    1. PR66 NGC. Norweb Collection (Bowers and Merena, 11/1988), lot 3159; Kaufman Collection; Milwaukee ANA (Heritage, 8/2007), lot 1786; FUN Signature (Heritage, 1/2013), lot 5667.
    2. PR65 NGC. Eliasberg Collection (Bowers and Merena, 4/1997), lot 1956; Rarities Sale ( Bowers and Merena, 8/1999), lot 206; Goldberg Coins (2/2002), lot 1002; Long Beach Signature (Heritage, 5/2003), lot 6212; Baltimore Signature (Heritage, 7/2003), lot 7646; Long Beach Signature (Heritage, 9/2003), lot 7098; Long Beach Signature (Heritage, 2/2005), lot 7098. The present coin.
    3. PR65 PCGS. Lorin G. Parmelee Collection (New York Coin & Stamp, 6/1890), lot 1234; Charles Steigerwalt; William Woodin; Waldo Newcomer; Col. E.H.R. Green; Major Lenox Lohr Collection (Stack's, 10/1956), lot 753; FUN Signature (Heritage, 1/2012), lot 3252.
    4. PR63 NGC. J. Hewitt Judd Collection; Illustrated History of United States Coins (Abe Kosoff, 1962), lot 172; 55th Anniversary Sale (Stack's, 10/1990), lot 1651; Richmond Collection (David Lawrence, 3/2005), lot 1795.
    5. Proof. Reed Hawn Collection (Stack's, 8/1973), lot 178.
    6. Proof. Smithsonian Institution.

    Additional Appearance
    A. Proof. 64th Sale (John W. Haseltine, 1/1883), lot 258. (NGC ID# 27TU, PCGS# 6405)

    Weight: 12.44 grams

    Metal: 90% Silver, 10% Copper


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

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2014
    27th Monday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 16
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 824

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    17.5% of the successful bid (minimum $14) per lot.

    The Draped Bust Half Dollars of 1796-1797 by Jon Amato

    The Draped Bust Half Dollars of 1796-1797 by Jon Amato is the culmination of more than 10 years of research into the Draped Bust Small Eagle half dollar series, one of the most coveted type coins in American numismatics and one about which remarkably little has been written.

    This work will be the premier reference for 1796-1797 half dollars for years to come. Institutions having an extensive numismatic library or coin cabinet will find it a valuable complement to their holdings, and catalogers charged with writing up specimens for auction can now have an indispensable source of background and pedigree information. Likewise, coin dealers seeking to purchase one or more '96 or '97 half dollars for a client or for inventory, and collectors who own, have owned, or desire to own one will want this important reference work for their libraries.

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