1859-S $1 MS (PCGS# 6948)
The August 2010 Boston Rarities Sale
Auctioneer: Bowers & Merena
Lot Number: 1083
View the Original Auction
One of the most appealing '59-S Dollars that this cataloger has seen in quite some time, this near-Mint survivor reveals flashes of original luster on both sides as the coin rotates under a light. The dominant appearance is one of moderate toning that reveals highlights of pale-lilac color to an otherwise light-gold sheen. Scattered abrasions are insignificant for a lightly circulated No Motto Seated Dollar, and a pair of thin planchet streaks over the left portion of the obverse portrait are as made and hardly distracting to the eye. Well struck for the issue, we call particular attention in this regard to emerging-to-bold definition over the eagle's left (facing) leg and talon on the reverse of the coin.<br /> An historically significant issue as the first San Francisco Mint Silver Dollar, the 1859-S was created at the request of West Coast merchants who needed a large-size silver coin for use in trade with the Orient. In this regard the 1859-S is the direct predecessor to the specialized Trade Dollar that was produced in greater numbers from 1873 through 1878 expressly for use in international commerce. With only 20,000 pieces struck and a poor rate of survival due to exportation and subsequent melting, the 1859-S is a scarce issue in an absolute sense that is rare-to-very rare in AU and Mint State.