SOLD – $5.00 – 1838-C PCGS AU55 CAC

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SOLD – $5.00 – 1838-C PCGS AU55 CAC


Serial Number 8177.55/28468368

PCGS Lookup Number 8177

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Variety 2. This is the rarer of the two varieties known for this issue.

The 1838-C has a higher level of demand than nearly any other half eagle from this mint. It is a first-year-of-issue and a one-year type. It is fairly easy to find in VF and even EF grades but it is rare in AU50 and very rare in properly graded AU55, especially with original color and surfaces.

This is the nicest 1838-C half eagle that I have handled in at least five years. It is a very early die state with amazingly good detail for an issue which is typically seen with the details weakened from die lapping; note the hair and feathers which show detail that you almost never see on this issue. My favorite feature about this remarkable coin, though, is its vivid rich natural reddish-orange and green-gold color. I can count on one hand the number of 1838-C half eagles in AU50 or better that I have seen with natural color and this is one of the most cosmetically appealing pieces that I have seen or know of.

No PCGS AU55 examples of this date have sold at auction since B+M 3/01: 126 (ex Eliasberg) brought $18,100. Bass II: 868, also graded AU55 by PCGS, sold for $19,550 in October 1999 and I bought both of these coins. In Heritage’s 2008 FUN sale, I bought a PCGS AU58 and an NGC AU58 example of the 1838-C for $25,300 and $25,185, respectively, and these have been off the market since then.

I believe that this is the single nicest 1838-C half eagle that has been available for at least 5+ years and now that this is a coin with strong multiple levels of demand, its significance is more fully understood.

CAC has approved this one coin in AU55 with none finer.