Ron Guth: The 1808/7 Half Cent, Cohen 1 is one of the rarest of all the Half Cent varieties AND is one of the most difficult varieties to find in decent condition. Most of the known examples have been discovered over the past two decades, many through offerings on eBay.
The extreme rarity of this variety stems from the destruction of the reverse die, caused when the die was placed into the press at a tilt. Because the plane of the face of the reverse die was not in perfect parallel alignment with the obverse die, the top left of the reverse die hit the planchet with higher pressure than did the lower right. This cracked the die and eventually led to its failure. Apparently, the cracking began early in the die's life, as all known examples of the 1808 C-1 (except one) show die cracks connecting the D and S of STATES and the tops of STAT.
Most of the surviving examples are low grade, ranging from Poor to Very Good, often with porous or defective surfaces. One of the nicest examples is a F-12, discovered in 2012, on a nice, brown planchet.
© 1999 - 2013 Collectors Universe NASDAQ: CLCT