Estimated grade. Ex. Pollard (1955) Sold by David Akers Numismatics Oct '97 Price realized $770
Doug Winter: The 1843-D is the most common Dahlonega half eagle struck in the 1840’s and it is one of the more obtainable issues from this mint in high grades. Its relative availability and its early date of issue make it a popular type coin.
The 1843-D half eagle is relatively common in lower grades and can be obtained in the lower About Uncirculated grades without a great deal of difficulty. This issue becomes rare in choice About Uncirculated and it is very rare in any Mint State grade.
STRIKE: This is one of the best struck Dahlonega half eagles. Many show excellent detail on the hair of Liberty with complete definition on the strands below BERT and on the curl beneath the ear. The stars are often well detailed with full radial lines. The reverse shows a comparable quality of strike with the eagle’s feathers and wing tips often fully formed. There is sometimes weakness on the legs of the eagle but it is possible to find an 1843-D half eagle that is sharp in this area as well.
SURFACES: The majority of 1843-D half eagles are very heavily abraded. It is not uncommon to see otherwise attractive example with clusters of deep, detracting marks in the fields. All 1843-D half eagles have raised die lumps on the obverse (see Die varieties, below) which should not be confused with defects or damage.
LUSTER: 1843-D half eagles generally display good luster. High grade examples have a pleasing frosty appearance.
COLORATION: Uncleaned, original pieces have been seen with a broad range of coloration. This coloration ranges from deep yellow gold to rich coppery-orange. There are more original examples remaining than for most of the dates from the early 1840’s but the number of original coins is becoming fewer each year.
EYE APPEAL: This is one of the best manufactured Dahlonega half eagles. It is possible to locate an example that is well struck, lustrous and attractively toned. Finding one with clean surfaces, however, is quite challenging.
PERSONAL OBSERVATIONS: At one point, the three finest known 1843-D half eagles were all in the Duke’s Creek collection.
Variety 10-H: Medium D. Same obverse as the last but with a line of three tiny die lumps between the first and the second stars, another die lump below the 12th star and other small lumps over the 43 in the date. Medium D mintmark, large letters reverse. The mintmark is centered between the feather tip and the V in FIVE. The left edge of the D is over the left edge of the left serif of the right diagonal of the V. The upright of the mintmark is over the center of the right diagonal of the V. The left edge extends beyond the left edge of the feather tip and the right edge is over the right edge of the upright of the E in FIVE.
This variety is at least four to five times more common than the Small D variety.David Akers (1975/88): Unlike the 1843-C which always has the Small Letters reverse, the 1843-D always has the Large Letters reverse. As a date, it is far more common than the 1843-C and it is actually one of the most often available Half Eagles from the Dahlonega Mint. Uncirculated examples are known but are very rare. The typically available specimen is only VF or EF.
Phineas Adams - William Jenks - Haseltine 6/1883:380 - T. Harrison Garrett Collection - Robert Garrett Collection - John Work Garrett Collection - Johns Hopkins University Collection - Stack’s 3/1976:375 - Harry W. Bass, Jr. Collection - Bowers & Merena 10/1999:923, $48,300 - Stack's/Bowers 8/2012:11700, not sold - Heritage 4/2015:5334, $282,000
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