1831 50C PR (PCGS# 6210)

2013 April 24 - 28 CSNS US Coin Signature Auction - Chicago #1184

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    Heritage Auctions
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Lot Description
1831 50C PR65 PCGS. O-103, R.1 as a business strike, R.8 as a proof. When Walter Breen published his revised Proof Encyclopedia in 1988 he listed only the O-103 die variety for three examples of the proof 1831 half dollar, including the Hawn-Robison brilliant proof, number 4 below (and in reality an O-108), and the Paramount example, number 2 below, but omitting the Allenburger-Mehl-Pittman example, number 3. The present Gem proof O-103 graded by PCGS simply leaves no doubt as to its proof status. In fact, it greatly resembles in its overall fabric the Pittman coin, but it is not. We would be unsurprised, however, if the time machine revealed that the present coin and the Pittman coin were struck at the same time, probably the same day. For that reason, we quote David Akers' description at some length in the roster that follows. Die polishing marks appear on the bust and neck of Liberty, some exactly matching the Pittman piece, for example under the lowest curl above the clasp. But the "few light parallel lines" on Liberty's cheek that the Pittman coin shows are absent here, and there are three curious little scoop-shaped marks on the bust that appear on the Pittman coin -- in slightly different places. The patina is also considerably different. This Gem PCGS coin is a beautiful commingling of iridescent colors including gold, mint, saffron, and pinkish-blue. The fields are highly reflective and quite well-mirrored, and the coin is perfectly centered with even dentilation all the way around. The strike is remarkably sharp on all star centrils, the hair, and all areas of the reverse, save for the lowest portion on the stem, claws, and denomination. Even though we can find no earlier evidence of the provenance of this coin, it must now be considered a tied-for-finest-known proof O-103 half dollar, and the sole finest at PCGS (3/13). Roster of 1831 Proof Half Dollars 1. PR65 PCGS. O-103. The present specimen. 2. PR64 PCGS.
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