SOLD – $5.00 – 1869-S PCGS AU58 CAC

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SOLD – $5.00 – 1869-S PCGS AU58 CAC


Serial Number 8318.58/80612720

PCGS Lookup Number 8318

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The early With Motto half eagles from San Francisco are not as rare as their No Motto counterparts but the pre-1877 dates still offer the collector a challenge, especially in higher grades. Of the 31,000 1869-S half eagle made, there are an estimated 100-125 with many in the EF40 to AU50 range. This date is very rare in properly graded AU58 and it is extremely rare in Uncirculated with just two or three known to me. The finest is a PCGS MS62 which sold for $24,150 as Bowers and Merena 11/09: 3713.

This choice, fresh-to-the-market example is the best 1869-S half eagle I have ever owned and it is one of the fewer higher grade pieces which appears to be entirely unmolested. There is no real wear to speak of but the obverse high spots show some friction from a sojourn in a bag. There are numerous small ticks in the fields and one is noted at the center of the reverse on the shield. The color is absolutely proper for the issue with rose highlights contrasting an even medium orange-gold.

The only PCGS AU58 which has sold at auction since 2002 is ex Superior 5/06: 1135 at $9,200. This was back when almost no one collected rare date gold from San Francisco; a situation which has clearly changed in the ensuing decade.

Unless you “have to” own one of the small number of Uncirculated 1869-S half eagles, I doubt that you will find a more pleasing example of this date.

CAC has approved one in this grade with just one finer.