1857-C $5 (Regular Strike)

Series: Liberty Head $5 1839-1908

PCGS MS63

PCGS MS63

View More Images

PCGS MS63

PCGS MS63

PCGS MS62+

PCGS MS62+

PCGS #:
8272
Designer:
Christian Gobrecht
Edge:
Reeded
Diameter:
21.65 millimeters
Weight:
8.36 grams
Mintage:
31,360
Mint:
Charlotte
Metal:
90% Gold, 10% Copper
Major Varieties

Current Auctions - PCGS Graded
Current Auctions - NGC Graded
For Sale Now at Collectors Corner - PCGS Graded
For Sale Now at Collectors Corner - NGC Graded

Rarity and Survival Estimates Learn More

Grades Survival
Estimate
Numismatic
Rarity
Relative Rarity
By Type
Relative Rarity
By Series
All Grades 500 R-6.0 96 / 112 TIE 136 / 218 TIE
60 or Better 17 R-9.2 84 / 112 TIE 113 / 218 TIE
65 or Better 0 R-10.1 1 / 112 1 / 218
Survival Estimate
All Grades 500
60 or Better 17
65 or Better
Numismatic Rarity
All Grades R-6.0
60 or Better R-9.2
65 or Better R-10.1
Relative Rarity By Type All Specs in this Type
All Grades 96 / 112 TIE
60 or Better 84 / 112 TIE
65 or Better 1 / 112
Relative Rarity By Series All Specs in this Series
All Grades 136 / 218 TIE
60 or Better 113 / 218 TIE
65 or Better 1 / 218

Condition Census What Is This?

Pos Grade Image Pedigree and History
1 MS64 estimated grade

Elrod Collection - Stack's 5/1986 - William Miller Collection - Heritage 2/1999:6290 - Heritage 1//2000:7759, $28,750 - Ashland City Collection - Heritage 1/2003:4797, $33,350 - American Numismatic Rarities 8/2006:1432, not sold

2 MS63 PCGS grade
2 MS63 PCGS grade

Donald E. Bently Collection - Heritage 1/2014:5452, $22,325

4 MS62 PCGS grade PCGS #8272 (MS)     62
4 MS62 PCGS grade
4 MS62 PCGS grade
4 MS62 PCGS grade
4 MS62 PCGS grade
4 MS62 estimated grade
10 MS61 PCGS grade

American Numismatic Rarities 8/2006:1433, not sold

#1 MS64 estimated grade

Elrod Collection - Stack's 5/1986 - William Miller Collection - Heritage 2/1999:6290 - Heritage 1//2000:7759, $28,750 - Ashland City Collection - Heritage 1/2003:4797, $33,350 - American Numismatic Rarities 8/2006:1432, not sold

#2 MS63 PCGS grade
#2 MS63 PCGS grade

Donald E. Bently Collection - Heritage 1/2014:5452, $22,325

PCGS #8272 (MS)     62 #4 MS62 PCGS grade
#4 MS62 PCGS grade
#4 MS62 PCGS grade
#4 MS62 PCGS grade
#4 MS62 PCGS grade
#4 MS62 estimated grade
#10 MS61 PCGS grade

American Numismatic Rarities 8/2006:1433, not sold

David Akers (1975/88): The 1857-C is roughly comparable in overall rarity to the 1855-C and 1856-C and is generally available only in VF or EF condition. At most two or three strictly uncirculated specimens are known and even Almost Uncirculated examples are very rare.
Doug Winter: The 1857-C is one of the more available Charlotte half eagles. It is relatively available in higher grades. I think it is possible that a small hoard of comparatively choice pieces may have existed at on time.

The 1857-C is one of the more available Charlotte half eagles both in terms of overall and high grade rarity. It is reasonably easy to locate in Very Fine and Extremely Fine grades and only slightly scarce in the lowest About Uncirculated grades. It becomes scarce in properly graded AU55 to AU58 and rare in Uncirculated.

STRIKE: This issue shows a reasonably good strike in comparison to other Charlotte half eagles produced during the 1850s. The obverse has a good overall strike but always has some weakness on the curls below BERT in LIBERTY and on the curl beneath the ear. The rest of the hair detail is very strong. The stars are mostly sharp with many having full radial lines. The denticles are sharp as well. The reverse is usually weak on the eagle’s neck and the horizontal lines in the shield tend not to show full definition. The rest of the reverse is generally sharp with strong feathers and claws. On a few coins, I have seen weakness on the eagle’s right leg and claw.

SURFACES: There are only a few 1857-C half eagles that do not show very heavily abraded fields. This appears to be an issue that was treated roughly; the typical 1857-C has deep, detracting marks on both the obverse and the reverse. Any piece that has clean, unmarked surfaces is very rare and should command a strong premium.

LUSTER: The luster on this issue tends to be above average. Higher grade pieces are usually frosty but many show breaks in the fields due to pronounced mint-made striations. The small number of 1857-C half eagles that are slightly prooflike tend to be very abraded and, as a result, have poor eye appeal.

COLORATION: Original, uncleaned 1857-C half eagles have deeper color than other Charlotte half eagles of this era. Many are deep green-gold with rich yellow-gold undertones. I have also seen a few nice natural orange-gold and reddish hues. At one time this date was relatively available with original color, but as more are dipped or processed original color has become hard to find.

EYE APPEAL: The level of eye appeal for the 1857-C half eagle is average to slightly above average. Most show a decent overall strike with the majority of the weakness confined to the centers. The surfaces are nearly always abraded and/or striated. The luster and color on some of the better survivors is very pleasing. These factors make the 1857-C a good potential type coin for the collector seeking a single higher grade eagle from the Charlotte Mint.

DIE CHARACTERISTICS: A small, thin die scratch can be seen on the obverse just past star eleven that extends out into the field. There are also occasional extensions of some of the denticles noted at the border on the obverse.

DIE VARIETIES: A single variety is known.

Variety 1 (formerly 25-J): The 1 in the date is very close to the bust and to the denticles. The 7 is centered in the field between the bust and the denticles. The reverse is the same for those produced in 1855 and 1856.