Flowing Hair Half Dime
Q. David Bowers (edited and updated by Mike Sherman): The obverse of the 1794-1795 half dime style portrays Miss Liberty with flowing hair, facing right, with LIBERTY above and the date below. Eight stars are behind her head and seven are in front. The reverse illustrates a delicate or “small” eagle perched within an open wreath, with UNITED STATES OF AMERICA surrounding. Denticles are around the border, as on all half dimes from this design forward. Curiously, neither this half dime design nor the following two motifs bear a designation of denomination or value.
Of the two dates in the Flowing Hair half dime series, the 1795 is more often seen than the 1794. Specimens of either date are typically encountered in grades from Good through Fine to Very Fine. Extremely Fine examples are elusive, and AU coins are fairly rare. Uncirculated pieces are apt to be encountered only when great collections come on the market. Many pieces are found with a series of parallel lines or adjustment marks, produced at the Mint during the planchet preparation process. In keeping with other pieces of the era, the striking is apt to be inconsistent, and often one area or another will show some normal weakness.
-- Reprinted with permission from "United States Coins by Design Types - An Action Guide for the Collector and Investor" by Q. David Bowers