Richly colored 1802/1 Capped Bust gold Heritage
- Published: Mar 30, 2018, 5 AM
If you’ve ever had a pocket piece, then you understand how long it takes a coin to acquire the sort of heavy wear that might take it down to a Fine, Very Good, Good or even an About Good, Fair or Poor grade. While many collectors gravitate toward high-end Mint State coins, others are drawn to the history and magic of heavily circulated coins. Finding a problem-free example of an otherwise cost-prohibitive rarity with solid eye appeal can be a real challenge that takes patience, but for many, the result is worth the work. Here is an example of such a coin.
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1802/1 Capped Bust $5 half eagle, PCGS Very Good 10, green CAC sticker
Generally, early U.S. gold coins did not circulate as widely as lower-denomination coins, and heavily circulated examples are rarely seen. When encountered, they often show evidence of being used in jewelry or serving time as a pocket piece, with problems like heavy polishing, scratches, repairs and mounting remnants. A richly colored 1802/1 Capped Bust gold $5 half eagle graded Professional Coin Grading Service Very Good 10 with a green Certified Acceptance Corp. sticker is a rare find. The coin sold for $4,080 at Heritage’s Feb. 22 Premier Session auction in Long Beach, California.
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Two different obverse dies were used to strike $5 half eagles in 1802. Both dies are overdates created from leftover 1801 dies and the 1 is clearly seen under the 2 in the obverse date. It as listed as BD-2 in the Harry Bass-John Dannreuther reference, and a die break over the F in OF on the reverse identifies it as die state c/c.
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