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Obverse of 1841 Half Cent     Reverse of 1841 Half Cent


PCGS Nos: 1254, 1255, 1256


Circulation strikes: 0
Proofs: estimated 100

Designer: Christian Gobrecht

Diameter: 23 millimeters

Metal content:
Copper - 100%

Weight: 84 grains (5.44 grams)

Edge: Plain

Mintmarks: None (all 1841 Half Cents were struck at the Philadelphia Mint)

Rick Coleman claims to know of at least 68 different 1841 Original Half Cents and at least 14 different 1841 Second Restrikes.

Half Cents of this date were struck only as Proofs.

The finest Proof "Original" Brown example graded by PCGS is a single PR-66BN.

The finest Proof "Original" Red-Brown examples graded by PCGS are 3 PR-64RB's.

The finest Proof "Original" Red example graded by PCGS is a single PR-65RD's.

The finest Proof "Restrike" Brown example graded by PCGS is a single PR-65BN.

The finest Proof "Restrike" Red-Brown example graded by PCGS is a single PR-65RB.

Images courtesy of Ira & Larry Goldberg Coins & Collectibles, Inc.

Original - Large Berries
First Restrike - Small Berries
Second Restrike - Small Berries

Significant examples:
NGC Proof-65 Red & Brown (illustrated above).  Ex - Superior Stamp and Coin's "Pre-Long Beach" Sale, February 7-8, 2000, Lot 1552, "1841 Breen 1-A Proof Original...NGC graded Proof-65 Red & Brown...There are a few small marks in the field off the tip of the nose...These look like contact marks at first glance, but they are shallow chips or voids in the planchet, as struck.  EAC graded Proof-64", unsold - Ira & Larry Goldberg Coins & Collectibles, Inc.'s "The Benson Collection" Sale - Part 1, February 18-20, 2001 - Ira & Larry Goldberg Coin & Collectibles' "The Fairchild Family Trust Collection Sale", May 28-30, 2001, Lot 127, "Original", B-1a", illustrated, sold for $5,865.00 - Ira & Larry Goldberg Coins & Collectibles, Inc.'s "Benson II" sale, February 18-19, 2002, Lot 36, sold for $5,520.00

Recent appearances:
Gem Brilliant Proof 65.  Ex - Stack's "65th Anniversary Sale", October 17-19, 2000, Lot 46, "Br. 3, Small Berries, die file lines over 'RICA' identify this great rarity.  Obverse  shows the curving die crack linking stars 3-6.  Breen reports about 9 proofs known.  Rick Coleman lists 14 examples in his 'Monograph of Second Restrike Proof Half Cents.'", illustrated, sold for $6,900.00

NGC Proof-65 Red and Brown.  Ex - Ira & Larry Goldberg Coins & Collectibles, Inc.'s "The Benson Collection - Part I", February 16, 18-20, 2001, Lot 227, "Del Bland graded PR-63, Original", illustrated, sold for $5,520.00

PCGS Proof-65 Brown.  Akers "Pittman" - Jim McGuigan

PCGS Proof-64 Red and Brown.  Ex - Superior Galleries "Pre-Long Beach" Elite Coin Auction, May 25-27, 2003, Lot 325, "Proof Original", sold for $5,462.50 Ex Dr. Thomas Addis Emmet circa 1895-New York Public Library-Bowers & Ruddy 10/82:2141-unknown- Auction '83 (RARCOA), lot 1007-Larry Hanks- Auction '84 (Superior), lot 13-Jim McGuigan-Dr. Wallace Lee.

Proof-62 (illustrated below).  Ex - Heritage Numismatic Auctions, Inc.'s 1999 ANA Signature Sale, August 11-13, 1999, Lot 5096, "PR-62, Original" (the white lines on the right rims are photographic flaws)

Proof-60.  Ex - Abner Kreisberg's sale, April 6, 1967, Lot 1786 - Stack's "The Marvin Taichert Collection of U.S. Type Coins", May 9, 2001, Lot 71, "Breen-3", illustrated, sold for $3,450.00

Sources and/or recommended reading:
"American Half Cents - The 'Little Half Sisters' (Second Edition)" by Roger S. Cohen, Jr.

"Walter Breen's Encyclopedia of United States Half Cents 1793-1857" by Walter Breen

"The PCGS Population Report, October 2003" by The Professional Coin Grading Service

Relevant collector organizations:
Early American Coppers Club

Obverse of 1841 Half Cent - Original    Reverse of 1841 Half Cent - Original

Images courtesy of Heritage Numismatic Auctions