Liberty Seated Half Dime (1837 – 1873)

#1 Liberty Seated Half Dime Buyer Las Vegas & Henderson

HISTORY

Silver was one of the main substance that was used to make coins. The half dimes produced is not an exception as it mainly uses silver and silver holds the largest amount of metal in it. The last half dimes made out of silver was the Liberty Seated Half Dimes. During the year from it has first emerged to the last year of its production, five types were circulated. Christian Gobrecht’s main motif for the obverse’s design featured Lady Liberty sitting on a rock, holding a shield – with the word “LIBERTY” scribbled on it – on her right hand, and on her left hand was her liberty cap hanging by a pole. The date was added under Lady Liberty. For the reverse, the eagle no longer appears. It was replaced with the word “HALF DIME” with an open wreath tied with a ribbon around it. Surrounding it was “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.”

 

TYPES OF LIBERTY SEATED HALF DIME

    • No Stars Obverse was one of the types that circulated in the series. It was the first type of Liberty Seated half dime that was struck within the year 1837 to 1838. Two mintage produced the said type, in Philadelphia with no mint-mark and New Orleans with a mint-mark. There was a total of 1,475,000 of this was produced.

 

    • With the same designer and mintage, the second type sprang into production when stars were added in the obverse. Just like the previous ones, thirteen stars surrounded Lady Liberty to represent the thirteen states in the Union. The Stars Obverse was then produced from the year 1838 to 1853. Within that span, in 1840, they added another drapery behind Liberty’s elbow which was Robert Ball Hughes’s idea. The extra detail made the dime thicker.

 

    • A thought struck the chief engraver, James B. Longacre that caused a minimal weight reduction to the coin. He added arrowheads on the sides of the dates in the 1853 to 1855 production. Philadelphia managed to produce more than thirteen million coins, the rest were from New Orleans. For this reason, the coins produced in New Orleans became more expensive and rare.

 

    • In the year 1860, another type was produced until 1873. James Longacre redesigned the coin which was then recognized as the Legend Obverse. This was also the year that he decided that this was the last time he would modify the coin’s design. In this type, he removed the stars around Lady Liberty and replaced it with “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.” The reverse was enhanced, the wreath was more detailed with branches of corn, oak, wheat, and maple tied in a bow at the end. Inside it is the value of “HALF DIME” inscribed.

 

SAN FRANCISCO’S 1870-S

    • San Francisco mintage then started to follow the trend and produced coins from the year 1863 to 1873. Just like New Orleans, they also added mint-marks on their coins. The symbol “S” was found under the bow. But the coins struck in 1870 to 1872 were quite unusual as the mint-mark appears inside the wreath. The unique marking has made the Seated Liberty Half Dime coins minted by San Francisco rare and very evasive. The coins minted in San Francisco were made to commemorate the second mint building in 1870. The coins were placed inside the cornerstones.

 

    • The year 1978 proved its existence when a coin collector shocked the community with a Seated Liberty Half Dime year 1870 that was minted in San Francisco. It was believed to be discovered in a dealer’s box at a coin show. Later that year, another dime of the same identification was auctioned and sold for $425, 000. In the year 2004, the coin was sold in a Stack’s-Bowers auction for $661, 250. Collectors suspect that more examples managed to be in existence together with other coins minted by San Francisco that year that were buried inside the cornerstones of the old building. Yet, there were rumors saying that those obtained were reckoned to be duplicates considering that the building is still intact until now.

 

COINAGE ACT OF 1873 ENDED HALF DIMES

    • However, the production of all half dimes was put to an end when the Coinage Act of 1873 was put into effect on April 1st. The new act sought to modify the weights of the dime, a quarter dollar, and a half dollar to follow a specific standard. The act not only stopped half dime’s production but also several varieties that were no longer mentioned in the new list of authorized issues. The silver in the five-cent coins was already replaced in some minted coins in 1866, but the act only intensified it. 1866 only used copper-nickel to fill in their coins and that is being practiced until present days.

 

 

Since the Seated Liberty Half Dime was in circulation for quite some time, a collector will not really find it hard to start his collection and they might collect mostly the same dates. The matter of difference would be the mint that struck the coin. As it was mentioned earlier, the San Francisco produced Seated Liberty Half Dimes are rare in this variety. The coin’s grade may range from Good to Uncirculated. Only the Superb Uncirculated pieces might need more effort in exploring to be acquired.

 

A number of coins are rare varieties in this series, distributed in different dates. The Philadephia produced coins from 1863 to 1867 are included in the rare finds. Saying all of this, the Seated Liberty Half Dime’s value may continue to go higher in the future compared to those of previous years. Moreover, it is a piece of common knowledge to all collectors that the age of the artifact also holds value, given the fact that they were preserved very well. This edition is not only rare, but it was also the last half dime to be minted and circulated.

 

For a beginner in the coil collection, this edition could be a great initial point. There are lots of it that are only affordable and have potential money counterpart increase in the future. As of today, the price would always depend on the quality, the state, the date, and the mint of the coin. The coins are graded in four states: Good, Fine, Extremely Fine, and Uncirculated. Superb Uncirculated pieces are almost impossible to acquire. The value of the coins starts from $16 to $4,500 after evaluating the said factors. The good thing is that the value keeps on increasing, making it popular with coin collectors.

 

 

https://www.jmbullion.com/coin-info/half-dimes/seated-half-dimes/#

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https://www.ngccoin.com/coin-explorer/seated-liberty-half-dimes-1837-1873-pscid-27

https://www.pcgs.com/coinfacts/category/liberty-seated-half-dime-1837-1873/93

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Half_dime#Seated_Liberty_(1837%E2%80%931873)