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Condition Census 1795 Half Cent in Stack’s Bowers Baltimore Auction

By James McCartney, Numismatist & CatalogerStack’s Bowers ……
The Stack’s Bowers November 2017 Official Auction of the Whitman Coins & Collectibles Baltimore Expo promises to be a truly monumental event in both quality and quantity of offerings. This year’s auction will be highlighted by selections from the Cardinal Collection Educational Foundation, the Alexander and Murray Hill Collections, and other important properties, along with a fantastic selection of Early American coinage presented in conjunction with the Colonial Coin Collectors Club (C4).

Also featured is an exceptional early half cent, traceable back over half a century to Stack’s offering of the Joseph L. Brobston Collection of U.S. Half Cents in January 1963. Struck in 1795 from the Cohen-2a dies, this coin’s appeal is obvious upon first glance, with rich mahogany-bronze patina and steel blue accents atop the highest points. The luster is fully intact and satiny, flooding the fields.

United States 1795 Cohen-2a Half Cent at November 2017 Whitman Baltimore Auction. Images courtesy Stack's Bowers Galleries

In his 1983 Encyclopedia on the denomination, Walter Breen suggests that this specimen might be the same as the John Mills-David Wilson example ranked seventh in his census, though an examination of the plates on the Newman Numismatic Portal has dispelled this notion. Even so, the present example sits in the mid-range of the condition census, approaching Mint State quality in many respects.

An old mark is seen in the right obverse field around the pole and truncation, but the surfaces are otherwise smooth and without notable imperfections. Nicely centered on each side, the denticles are full and the focal elements are sharply defined, especially on the reverse. The eponymous “punctuation” between the first two digits of the date is bold and accompanies similar scattered die chips and cracks in the peripheries. Early American copper specialists will be sure to recognize the significance of the present offering!

This handsome rarity from the early days of the U.S. Mint will be offered in lot 1005 of our November 2017 Official Auction of the Whitman Coin & Collectibles Baltimore Expo, appearing alongside such treasures as a Mint State 1792 Silver Center cent from the Cardinal Collection Educational Foundation and a Choice Mint State 1796 Stars quarter eagle from the Murray Hill Collection. Call us today at 1-800-458-4646 to secure your copy of this exciting catalog.

Also, download our mobile app to participate via your Android or Apple device. Email [email protected] for more information.

Stack's Bowers
Stack's Bowers
Stack's Bowers Galleries conducts live, internet, and specialized auctions of rare U.S. and world coins and currency and ancient coins, as well as direct sales through retail and wholesale channels. The company's 90-year legacy includes the cataloging and sale of many of the most valuable United States coin and currency collections to ever cross an auction block — The D. Brent Pogue Collection, The John J. Ford, Jr. Collection, The Louis E. Eliasberg, Sr. Collection, The Harry W. Bass, Jr. Collection, The Joel R. Anderson Collection, The Norweb Collection, The Cardinal Collection, The Sydney F. Martin Collection, and The Battle Born Collection — to name just a few. World coin and currency collections include The Pinnacle Collection, The Louis E. Eliasberg, Sr. Collection of World Gold Coins, The Kroisos Collection, The Alicia and Sidney Belzberg Collection, The Salton Collection, The Wa She Wong Collection, and The Thos. H. Law Collection. The company is headquartered in Costa Mesa, California with galleries in New York, Boston, and Philadelphia. Offices are also located in New Hampshire, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Virginia, Hong Kong, Paris, and Vancouver.

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