US Coins

Market Analysis: Poor 1 1921 Peace dollar brings $480

While the date is nearly absent on this Poor 1 Peace dollar, the high relief indicates it is from 1921 and it sold for $480 during the online auction. A higher grade example, in Fair 2, realized $100.

Images courtesy of Stack's Bowers Galleries

A favorite in Bill Fivaz’s “World’s Worst Type Set” collection was a 1921 Peace dollar struck in its distinctive high relief that was used only on that first year of issue. The coin, graded Poor 1 by Professional Coin Grading Service, realized $480.

The date is nearly worn off, though a bit of the last four digits remain visible, but it is easily differentiated from later 1922 to 1935 Peace dollars by the obverse’s high relief, which give the fields a sense of being sunken.

Fivaz is well-known as an educator, teaching several generations of collectors at the American Numismatic Association Summer Seminar and displaying these heavily worn coins at his local coin club to show collectors how coins acquire wear.

Stack’s Bowers Galleries points out that Fivaz is in good company regarding his excitement for well-worn coins, writing, “Recent landmark sales such as The D. Brent Pogue Collection Part VII, which saw prices realized into the thousands of dollars for Poor-1 certified ‘common’ coins, have brought considerable attention to this fascinating and under-appreciated area of collecting,” concluding, “The true rarity of these exceedingly low-grade yet problem-free coins is not yet fully recognized by today’s collectors.”

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