Goldberg Coins and Collectibles

Sale 44

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Lot 2177

1839-O. Capped Bust Half Dollar. NGC graded Proof 65. Georgeous irridescent hues of violet and blue. Exceedingly rare branch mint Proof. Not listed by PCGS. Rarity-7. One of five or fewer known. A fantastic example of this extraordinarily rare branch mint Proof. The surfaces are toned iridescent blue and dark champagne color with traces of rich green and purple-laden russet blended together. Not a thing to report that would tend to limit the technical grade, and, as the photographs clearly show, the coin's overall appeal its tops in its class. For identification, there is a minute nick below Liberty's chin on the upper throat. The coin is encased in NGC holder with certification number 1720540-001. The piece is struck with the one die pairing found on the other Proofs as well as most of the circulation 1839-O mint half dollars. On this early Proof state the obverse shows no indications of a later die crack that developed through the stars. The Mintmark is bold, as well as being double-punched along the lower curve. Although apparently both dies cracked very early in the production run of the Branch Mint Proofs, with the 1838-O coins being struck from this same reverse die (prior to the striking of the 1839-O Proofs), this example shows no signs of die deterioration. It may have been one of the first 1839-O Proofs minted.

The Breen Encyclopedia (1988) lists "5 known Proofs." Stack's which offered a "Choice Brilliant Proof" 1839-O in its October 2006 sale, kindly provides the following up-to-date provenance listing of the 4 known specimens as derived from Breen's earlier Proof Encyclopedia (1977):

1) Ex Stack's Sale, September 1992, lot 358; Krouner Collection (Lester Merkin, February 1971, lot 736); Stack's Sale, October 2006.

2) Proof, deeply toned. Planchet defect over eagle's head. F.C.C. Boyd ''World's Greatest Collection'' (Numismatic Gallery, May 1945, lot 411; Allenburger Collection (B. Max Mehl, March 1948); R. E. Cox Collection (Stack's, April 1962, lot 1875).

3) Reported by Breen in Philip G. Straus Collection (1951). Not later sold in New Netherlands #53, June 1959 or Stack's, May 1959. Not seen. Medal turn die alignment.

4) This Specimen. Private collection, possibly #1 or #3 above or another specimen--Robison Collection (Stack's, February 1982, lot 1607).

Pop 1; none finer @ NGC.
Estimated Value $300,000 - 350,000.
Ex: Robison Collection.

Realized $373,750

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