US Coins

Market Analysis: Rare half cent in About Good 3 still appealing

The Cohen-1 1802/0 Draped Bust, Reverse of 1800 half cent is a key to the series, and this one, graded About Good 3 by PCGS, is one of around 25 known of the variety. It sold for $11,100.

Images courtesy of Heritage Auctions

The 1802/0 Draped Bust, Reverse of 1800 half cent is rare in all grades.

Heritage writes that the issue is “by a country mile, the key to a complete Guide Book of United States Coins variety collection of Draped Bust half cents.” This offered example, graded About Good 3 by Professional Coin Grading Service, is one of perhaps 25 that exist today, nearly all in very low grades. It realized $11,100.

It has more details than one might expect in this grade, with nearly full legends, a nicely outlined portrait on the obverse, and a bold wreath on the reverse. Heritage also praises “deep walnut brown surfaces” that show a touch of red patina at certain points that it characterizes as “evenly microgranular.” A tick on Liberty’s forehead and cheekbone can serve to identify this example in future auction offerings.

The reverse die used to strike this example of the Cohen 1 variety, as listed in Roger Cohen’s book American Half Cents: The “Little Half Sisters,” also struck 1800 half cents.

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