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    1870 Seated Liberty Dollar, MS66
    Well-Preserved, Lustrous Surfaces
    Tied for Finest Certified

    1870 $1 MS66 PCGS Secure. The 1870 federal census reported a United States population of 38,558,371 people and Director of the Mint, James Pollock, commented, "Most of our people rarely get the sight of a gold or silver coin." Circulating paper notes and fractional currency were used in commerce and for daily transactions. Copper and bronze cents circulated widely as did other "small change," but silver and gold dollars sat in bank vaults or were exported in payment for trade and foreign debt. With 416,000 silver dollars minted in 1870 (including 1,000 proofs) it seems there should be no shortage of high-grade examples for collectors. Not so, however.

    Most of the 1870 dollars remaining in the U.S. actually saw circulation. Some may have been melted in the mid 1870s and perhaps a few survivors disappeared later during the mass melting of silver dollars in 1918 - 1920 under the Pittman Act. Few were put aside by collectors. Today, it is more likely a high-grade proof can be located than a Gem business strike, as is the case for several earlier dates in the series. Serious collectors of Seated dollars know how seldom Premium Gems show up at auction or by private treaty. Population reports support the rarity: PCGS has certified just two 1870 dollars in MS66 with none finer while NGC reports just four in MS65 and none higher (6/14).

    When a fresh MS66 1870 dollar crosses the block collectors pay strict attention, especially when it is a stunning example such as this coin. The obverse deserves a second (and third) look with a frosted-white central figure of Liberty. This is a coin that puts "silver" into the meaning of silver dollar. Impeccable details are the rule except for localized weakness on stars 9 through 13. The blazing fields reflect brightly and push Liberty forward creating an extra-dimensional effect. The whiter-than-white reverse hides nothing except for a few curving die cracks hugging the tops of UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. We can find no record of any MS66 1870 Seated Liberty dollar being offered at public auction. Since this piece is tied for finest certified, It may be years before a comparable specimen becomes available.(Registry values: N10218)

    Coin Index Numbers: (NGC ID# 24ZD, PCGS# 6963)

    Weight: 26.73 grams

    Metal: 90% Silver, 10% Copper

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

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    August, 2014
    5th-9th Tuesday-Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 12
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,667

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