SOLD – $5.00 – 1861-D PCGS EF45 CAC

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SOLD – $5.00 – 1861-D PCGS EF45 CAC


Serial Number 8290.45/14205712

PCGS Lookup Number 8290

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If you ask most collectors what the most desirable gold coin ever produced at the Dahlonega mint is, my guess is that a sizable percentage will state the 1861-D without hesitation. There were an estimated 1,597 pieces struck of which fewer than 100 are known today. Unlike the other famous issue from this year, the 1861-D gold dollar, the half eagle tends not to be found in higher grades and not as many coins were saved. If you consider the fact that mot 1861-D half eagles are off the market in tightly-held collections this means a situation in which there is strong demand and very limited supply.

This piece has nice natural orange-gold color with some slight tinges of red at the borders. The strike is typical for the date with some weakness on the stars and the obverse denticles from 10:00 to 2:00. The obverse has clean fields and there are just a few small, old marks on the cheek; the reverse show one small cut which runs diagonally below the eagle’s beak towards the top of the shield.

In Heritage’s 9/12 auction, a PCGS EF40 example of this date sold for $41,125 to a knowledgeable dealer. No examples graded EF45 by PCGS have sold at auction sinceBowers and Merena 5/98: 1347 brought $10,450. (Yes, this date has shown excellent price performance over the last decade and a half…)

Everyone with an even passing interest in American history is smitten by the backstory of the rare 1861-D half eagle. An NGC AU55 example of the less rare and much smaller 1861-D gold dollar just sold for close to $50,000 in the recent Heritage CSNS auction. For the money, I’d rather have a nice 1861-D half eagle!

This is the only example of this date in EF45 to have been approved by CAC. Eight finer examples have been approved.