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SERIES: Flowing Hair Half Dollars 1794-1795
LEVEL: Year, MintMark, & Major Variety

1795 50C Small Head (Regular Strike)

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PCGS MS62

HEAD COMPARISON

PCGS VF35
PCGS #:
6054
Diameter:
32.50 millimeters
Designer:
Robert Scot
Weight:
13.48 grams
Edge:
Lettered: FIFTY CENTS OR HALF A DOLLAR
Mintage:
299,680
Metal Content:
90% Silver, 10% Copper
Auction Record:
$199,750 • PCGS MS62 • 5-19-2015 • Stack's/Bowers
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Rarity and Survival Estimates (Explain)
Grades Survival
Estimate 
Numismatic
Rarity 
Relative Rarity
By Type 
Relative Rarity
By Series 
All Grades 400 R-6.2 2 / 6 TIE 2 / 6 TIE
60 or Better 1 R-10.0 1 / 6 1 / 6
65 or Better 0 R-10.1 1 / 6 1 / 6
Condition Census (Explain) Show more rows
Pos Grade Thumbnail Pedigree and History
1 MS62 PCGS grade

Lord St. Oswald Collection - Christie’s 10/1964:144 - Reed Hawn Collection - Stack’s 8/1973:3 - Dr. George F. Oviedo Collection - Stack’s 9/1983:722 - William R. Orwen Collection - Stack’s 10/1999:341, $89,125 - D. Brent Pogue Collection - Stack’s/Bowers & Sotheby’s 5/2015:1099, $199,750

2 AU58 PCGS grade  
3 AU55 PCGS grade  
3 AU55 PCGS grade  
5 AU50 estimated grade  
Condition Census (Explain) Show fewer rows
Pos Grade Thumbnail Pedigree and History
1 MS62 PCGS grade

Lord St. Oswald Collection - Christie’s 10/1964:144 - Reed Hawn Collection - Stack’s 8/1973:3 - Dr. George F. Oviedo Collection - Stack’s 9/1983:722 - William R. Orwen Collection - Stack’s 10/1999:341, $89,125 - D. Brent Pogue Collection - Stack’s/Bowers & Sotheby’s 5/2015:1099, $199,750

2 AU58 PCGS grade  
3 AU55 PCGS grade  
3 AU55 PCGS grade  
5 AU50 estimated grade  
6 VF35 PCGS grade
7 VF20 PCGS grade
8 F15 PCGS grade  
8 F15 PCGS grade  
10 F12 PCGS grade  

Ron Guth: The 1795 Small Head Half Dollar is a distinctive type with an appearance much different from that of the "normal" 1795 heads.  The length of the curls is shorter than usual, the truncation line is flatter and has an extra loop as if the portrait is a piece of statuary.  Three different 1795-dated obverse dies qualify as Small Heads (Overton, 39-41): Obv. 15, 16, and 17.  All are scarce to rare.  Robert Hilt attributes all the Small Head obverses to John Smith Gardner.

PCGS (as of May 2011) has certified 49 examples of the Small Head 1795 Half Dollar, most of which are in Very Fine or lower grades. The PCGS Condition Census contains no Extremely Fine examples, only three About Uncirculated examples, and a single PCGS MS-62. 

Sources and/or recommended reading:
Hilt II, Robert P. Die Varieties of EarlyUnited States Coins. Omaha: RTS Publishing Company, 1980.

Overton, Al. C. Early Half Dollar Die Varietes: 1794-1836. Edited by Don Parlsey. Escondido: D.L. Parsley, 1990.