1788 New Jersey Copper, Head left
NGC VG10BN. The 1788 issue with the head facing left
is one of the scarcer red book varieties of New Jersey
coppers. Struck in limited quantities early in the year,
1788 is the last year New Jersey coppers were sold.
The end of the series was already destined on June
1, 1786 when the law passed for the coinage of these
pieces. The law that passed on that date gave authorization
to three English emigrants (Walter Mould, Thomas Goadsby,
and Albion Cox) to mint a total of three million coppers,
weighing 150 grains each before June 1, 1788.
All New Jersey coppers struck before this variety
had the horses head to the right. The exact reasons
for this issue are unclear. These have long been believed
being struck by Goadsby, in Rahway very early in 1788.
However, recent research has proved that there was
no coin press available at Rahway in early 1788 so
that situation can be dismissed. One fact, that is
confirmed, is that this issue only had three different
die varieties minted. All of these pieces are very
scarce in any grade.
The present piece, while only graded VG-10 by NGC
is much finer. This coin last sold in the 1/07 Stack’s
sale, lot 6612, where it was graded as F-15. We totally
agree with the grade assigned to it by Stacks. Problem-free
surfaces show all the design elements very well. Struck
on a choice planchet, this is the perfect coin for
anyone seeking a choice circulated example of this
scarce red book variety.
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