Goldberg Coins and Collectibles

Sale 13

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Lot 1139

1794 Flowing Hair Dollar. PCGS graded EF-40. An excellent example of this rare date that boasts antique silver color and defect free surfaces. There are the usual adjustment marks around the rims of the reverse, with the heaviest left of the first S of STATES, and through the eagle's tail, perch, wreath and rim below. The surfaces show minor circulation hairlines, and both sides have dark toning specks, predominantly on the reverse as illustrated. For a 1794 dollar, this one is well struck, with all the stars visible, and all of the reverse lettering is present, but weak due to the strike and the adjustment marks. Liberty's hair retains good separation on all but the uppermost wave over her ear, which shows the expected wear. We note areas of golden tones around the rims, and there is a small planchet crack through the 1 in the date, starting at the rim left of the digit, up on the left side of the serif, crossing the 1 at the bottom third, into the right field to midway between the 17, then curling back towards the 1. Other identifying features are a small nick between the two upper left points of the sixth star, a spot on the upper inside point of the fourteenth star, and a long adjustment mark down the post of the second T of STATES. PCGS has graded 5 examples as EF-40, one as EF-45, two as AU-55, and six in various mint state grades above.
It is believed that all 1794 dollars were coined on October 15, 1794 from silver bullion deposited by David Rittenhouse, and all 1794 silver dollars coined on this date were delivered to David Rittenhouse (Breen and Collins, in their draft of the 1794 silver dollar manuscript). Thus, all 1794 silver dollars can trace their pedigree to David Rittenhouse, who passed them out to friends, many of whom kept them, others were spent and circulated. The silver bullion deposited by Rittenhouse varied greatly, and there were many gas bubbles in the silver ingots, which later caused laminations and planchets cracks, which plague approximately 30 percent of the 1794 dollar population (as seen here with the faint planchet crack through the 1 in the date).
The 1794 silver dollar is an American classic, it is the first year of issue of our monetary unit, was struck in extremely limited quantities, and the total known population is between 130 and 140 coins in all grades.
Estimated Value $60,000-UP.
After exhaustive searching, this specimen is not recorded in the unpublished Jack Collins and Walter Breen study on 1794 silver dollars, and it is not the specimen offered in July 1997 at the Heritage ANA, which is also PCGS graded EF-40. Apparently, this coin that has traded privately and is not recorded in any auction appearance that we could locate.

Realized $97,750

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