In January, we showcased a special group of $10 Liberties struck during the California Gold Rush....
Mysteriously Rare Mint Type Set
In the late 19th century, the American $5 Half Eagle became one of the world’s most in-demand gold coins. Merchants, banks, and traders preferred coins weighing approximately 1/4 oz. for everyday trade. It’s no surprise that the economic superpowers of the time all made a coin in this general size (such as the British Sovereign and French/Swiss 20 Franc). As the United States became a larger force on the international stage, its $5 Liberty gold coin gained in acceptance
This surge in popularity largely took place in the 1880's and 1890's. As one might expect, some of the most available dates in the entire $5 Liberty series were struck during this time. Dates like the 1881, 1882, 1886-S, and 1899 are the most commonly encountered. However, if one looks just before 1880, $5 Liberty mintages are drastically lower.
Simply put, there’s a massive difference between pre-1880 and post-1880 $5 Liberties. Coins struck before 1880 have substantially lower mintages and survival rates. While we struggle to provide a reason, something dramatic happened when the 1880's began. The Philadelphia and San Francisco mints cranked up production to many multiples of their pre-1880 levels.
To illustrate this phenomenon, consider the huge difference between 1879 and 1881 Half Eagles:
|Mintage||Total NGC Population|
Perhaps just as surprising: 1879-P and 1879-S Half Eagles trade for a modest premium over their generic counterparts. They’re 20x rarer than the most common date but, when they appear on the market, command just a 20-30% premium. Much like why Half Eagle production spiked in 1880, we can’t explain this anomaly. What we do know for sure: this pricing means opportunity for you!
We acquired a cache of 1879 and 1879-S Half Eagles graded PCGS AU58. These coins look like they were plucked from circulation 140 years ago; they show just slight traces of circulation with design details fully intact. In total we have 60 coins of each date, which we’re excited to offer as matched two-coin sets.
Like all of our numismatic coin selections, you’ll find this set of two $5 Liberty Half Eagles graded and slabbed, ready to be added to your collection at a great value to you. We have a limited number available today, so act quickly.
- 1 x 1879 Philadelphia $5 Liberty Half Eagle in AU58
- 1 x 1879-S San Francisco $5 Liberty Half Eagle in AU58
- Just $1,349 per set.
- Buy 3 or more sets for just $1,299 each!
Quantities are limited, so don't delay!