The Rudolf specimen - the finest known. Amazing mint bloom graces near perfect surfaces. A light hint of golden toning is confined to Miss Liberty, otherwise white and flashy.
Q. David Bowers: The following narrative, with minor editing, is from my "Silver Dollars & Trade Dollars of the United States: A Complete Encyclopedia" (Wolfeboro, NH: Bowers and Merena Galleries, Inc., 1993).
Distribution: In 1865, the final year of the Civil War, specie payments remained in suspension, and the Treasury Department placed no 1865 silver coins of any denomination into circulation in the East. On the West Coast business was much as usual, and 1865-S silver and gold coins circulated in commerce.
Most of the mintage of the 1865 silver dollar is believed to have been exported to Central and South America.
Circulated grades: Here we go again: low mintage + many exported = rarity today. Circulated specimens are very scarce, possibly even scarcer than 1864 (although 1864 has a lower mintage).
Mint State grades: The 1865 dollar is a great rarity in Mint State and is a fit partner with others of its era in this regard. Some high-grade pieces show extensive die striae on the obverse, as struck. One reverse die shows breaks through the tops of TES, OF, and MERI, and the bottoms of E DOL; some unfinished areas in vertical shield stripe white spaces 2 and 3.
1. Low Date: Breen-5471. Obverse: Date low in field.
2. Normal Date: Breen-5471. Obverse: Date centered in field.
Dies prepared: Obverse: 3; Reverse: 3
Circulation strike mintage: 46,500; Delivery figures by day: March 3: 3,800; May 31: 14,000; September 8: 9,700; September 13: 7,000; September 27: 12,000.
Estimated quantity melted: Unknown
Characteristics of striking: Many show areas of light striking, often including the eagle's dexter leg.
Known hoards of Mint State coins: None
Most 1865 Liberty Seated dollars were exported.