1880 5C MS (PCGS# 3810)

2013 January 9-14 US Coin FUN Signature Auction - Orlando #1181

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    Heritage Auctions
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Lot Description
1880 5C MS65 PCGS. In the mid-1870s, a series of events contributed to low mintages for the minor coinage of the United States in specific years. Over-coining of the base-metal minors led to notable key and nonexistent dates such as the 1877 Indian cent and the proof-only three cent and five cent nickel issues in 1877 and 1878. The passage of a silver purchase act in 1878, which mandated government acquisition of silver and the coining thereof into dollars (the famous Morgan dollars), made work for the various Mints and took time away from other efforts, though this is seen most prominently in the minor silver denominations such as dimes and quarter dollars. The 1880 Shield nickel is the middle date of three struck in the years immediately following two proof-only dates for five cent coinage. From 1879 to 1881, five-figure mintages were the rule, and the 1880 at 16,000 pieces coined is the no-questions key to the series. An important issue in any grade, it emerges as a commanding condition rarity in the better Mint State levels, as there was no particular reason for the issue to be saved and high-grade survivors came through largely by chance. This Gem is an essential for the high-end collector of the series, Registry or private. Broadly luminous surfaces are semireflective but too frosted for a proof, and the strike, while excellent, is not full. Reddish-orange patina is noted at the right margins, while the remainder of the coin is light nickel-gray with an occasional golden cast. Population: 6 in 65 (1 in 65+), 1 finer (11/12).
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