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1799 1C

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1799 1C
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1799 1C S-189 (High R-2) PCGS VF-30 CAC. A lovely example of the key date in the large cent series. A favorite among numismatists since the 19th century, only about 1,000 pieces are still in existence from an unknown mintage. Estimates range widely, with some estimates as low as 30,000 pieces and some as high as 225,000 pieces minted.

One of the key diagnostics that comes with the 1799 large cent is the striking of especially the obverse. On the majority of all known examples, either LIBERTY or the date is weak. This was caused by a misalignment of the dies, making only a handful of pieces with both the legend, and date sharp. On the present coin, the date is very sharp and LIBERTY, although slightly weak, is much better struck than on most examples. Finding an example with such a sharp date requires long searching and pure luck, as they are very rare.

The 1799 large cent has been widely publicized, with a result that most, if not all serious coin collectors know about the rarity of this issue. Josheph Mickley, one of the first serious coin collectors in this country, widely publicized his search for a cent of this year. In 1816, he started to search, as this was an issue from his birth year and immediately noticed the rarity of this piece. Eventually he found one, a coin now graded AU and one of the finest pieces of this issue.

When coin collecting became popular with the general public, after the small cent was introduced, the prices of this particular issue strongly increased. When people looked everywhere for large cents gathered together during the previous decades, the 1799 was nowhere to be found. As a result, in the earliest known price guide for US coins, the 1799 was listed as “very rare” with prices 8-10 times as much as other early large cents. Only the 1793 cents, the first year of issue brought stronger prices, on occasion.

The present coin is a true PQ coin, as confirmed by the CAC sticker. Lovely brown surfaces, with a slightly mottled reverse toning. As previously noted, the obverse is strong, a diagnostic rare for this issue. Whenever a piece finer than Fine turns up, serious collectors have to consider every example, as choice pieces, such as this coin are very scarce. This is a rare opportunity to obtain one of the finer pieces of this popular early large cent.


US Rare Coin Investments 2003 - 2014 U.S. Rare Coin Investments

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