US Coins

Market Analysis: AU Details on 1792 half disme

Certified by PCGS as Genuine without a grade, this 1792 Flowing Hair half dime features AU details with repaired and smoothed fields, according to Heritage. It sold for $69,000 on May 3.

All images courtesy of Heritage Auctions.

The B&D Sanders Collection of pre-1800 U.S. Type Coins, sold by Heritage in a May auction, included an always-popular coin long considered a pattern that is collected alongside regular issues: the 1792 Flowing Hair half disme.

Modern research including the book 1792: Birth of a Nation’s Coinage confirms that they were the first official U.S. coinage struck after the passage of the Mint Act of April 2, 1792. A total of 1,500 half dimes were produced in July 1792 and a more were produced later that year, possibly for presentation purposes.

PCGS certified the coin in the auction as Genuine, with the label noting damage as a reason that it was not gradable. 

Heritage wrote, “in our opinion, this coin has the details of a About Uncirculated specimen that has been repaired and smoothed,” before citing a more extensive description of the coin’s peculiarities in the 1792 book where the authors said, “This coin has an unusual appearance.” Despite the repairs, it provided an opportunity for a collector of not-unlimited means to acquire a well-detailed example of this important issue.

It sold for $69,000.

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