Market Analysis: Electrotype 1804 dollar
- Published: Sep 26, 2023, 12 PM
Undoubtedly one of the most interesting “coins” in the sale was an electrotype 1804 Draped Bust dollar that was formed by joining two copper shells that were then silvered.
It was produced at the Philadelphia Mint around 1860 from the unique Class II 1804 dollar that was struck around 1858 over a Swiss shooting taler, and traces of the seam joining the two halves is seen in several areas on the subject offering.
Stack’s Bowers graded it choice Extremely Fine in its Aug. 16 offering of the Legacy Collection, explaining, “It is therefore an official product, to a degree, though certainly not intended as circulating coin or even within the normal boundaries of expected official Mint business.”
While the Professional Coin Grading Service does not certify these electrotypes, they are listed in the “Red Book” and around four are known. Given that genuine examples of an 1804 dollar — called the “King of American Coins” — are seven-figure offerings, this offered an opportunity, and it sold for $11,400, a discount from the $21,600 it realized last year at a Heritage auction.
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