Laibstain. Troy Wiseman Collection. The most abundant coin to survive in the whole series in mint state at all grades. Something close to 10% of each and every grade of PCGS certified Barber Halves are the 1892 Philadelphia issue, and this holds through circulated and most all mint state grades. This issue is usually well struck, as is typical of most Philadelphia-struck coins of the era, and the 1892 was saved as first year of issue due to it being the new type. This example is superb with multiple colors over intense luster, a very striking example; it stands out with its vibrant and swirling look. The date is popular for type collectors as it is the first date of the series and is available in all grades with relative ease, although nice F to EF coins are the most challenging grades. Harry's great eye for quality helped us choose this specimen for our set. Only the Duckor coin in MS 67+ and a lone MS 68 are graded higher. This is an especially important coin as it classically starts the set, and in this case does so with great style. A study of the population report of Barber Halves from PCGS shows that the seven or eight most plentiful issues like the 92, 15-D, 12-D, 09, 07-D, 07 etc, account for a large percentage of all certified mint state examples. That means there are a lot of issues that make up the rest of the population, so quite a number of specific issues have few available. As you read below you will note how often it will be stated that few coins exist for a given date and mint mark in mint state. There is a triple die reverse variety for this coin, with the finest known the MS 67 example formerly in the Dale Friend set, but it was not attributed until 2013 when it appeared in the Owen Collection Auction, sold at the pre-ANA sale in August 2013 in Rosemont, Il.
David Akers: Despite its relatively low mintage of just 935,245 pieces, including Proofs, the 1892 Barber Half Dollar is by far the most common of the 74 issues in this series. Obviously, many were saved as souvenirs of the first year of issue of the design.
John C. Hugon - Heritage 1/2005:4198, $34,500 - Heritage 2/2006:1326, $32,200 - Heritage 1/2007:992, $31,625
James W. Lull - Bowers & Merena 1/2005:699, $8,338 - Heritage 4/2008:2319, $13,800 - Heritage 1/2010:2556, $13,800