Goldberg Coins and Collectibles



Sale 39


 
 
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Lot 1267

1838-O Liberty Seated Half Dime. No stars. . Valentine-2. NGC graded MS-64. Well struck and fully lustrous with some tone starting to form. V-2. This is the scarcer of the two known die marriages of the 1838-O half dime. The present example is a late die state from a heavily rusted, worn obverse die. Nevertheless, all features on that side are clearly demarcated save for the lower right portion of Liberty's legs and the rock upon which she sits. The reverse, from a crisply delineated die, has sharp detail, while both sides possess full, satiny mint luster. Lightly toned in mottled golden tinting, with no abrasions that would call into question the validity of the near-Gem assessment.

This is a scarce issue in all grades that is downright rare in Mint State. There are two known die marriages, and Al Blythe (The Complete Guide to Liberty Seated Half Dimes, 1992) rates V-1 as a Rarity-7 in Mint State and V-2 as Unknown at the same level of preservation. The visual record shows that this 70,000-coin delivery saw extensive circulation throughout the antebellum South. Since the 1838-O is also the first New Orleans Mint half dime, and also the only O-mint issue in the No Stars Type of the seated Liberty series, one can easily appreciate why survivors are so hard to get hold of from a market availability standpoint.

Among our favorite types in the entire U.S. silver series is the No Stars half dime of 1837-1838. This is one of the few coins that displays Christian Gobrecht's initial seated Liberty design so clearly. The obverse is particularly attractive as the absence of 13 stars around the border creates an open, airy, almost cameo-like design that allows full appreciation of the central theme. Despite the attractiveness of this design, it was destined to be produced for just two years: in 1837 at the Philadelphia Mint and in 1838 at the New Orleans facility. The 1838-O is a scarce-to-rare issue in all grades that represents an important purchasing opportunity for the advanced numismatist whenever an example is available for sale. Pop 3; 1 finer in 65. (PCGS # 4314) .
Estimated Value $14,000 - 16,000.

 
Realized $16,100
 



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