The Survival Estimate represents an average of one or more experts' opinions as to how many examples survive of a particular coin in three categories: 1) all grades, 2) 60 or better, and 3) 65 or better. These estimates are based on a variety of sources, including population reports, auction appearances, and personal knowledge. Survival estimates include coins that are raw, certified by PCGS, and certified by other grading services.
Numismatic Rarity converts the Survival Estimate for a particular coin into a number from 1 to 10 (with decimal increments) based on the PCGS Rarity Scale. The higher the number, the more rare the coin.
Relative Rarity By Type
Relative Rarity By Type ranks the rarity of this coin with all other coins of this Type. Lower numbers indicate rarer coins.
Relative Rarity By Series
Relative Rarity By Series ranks the rarity of this coin with all other coins of this Series. Lower numbers indicate rarer coins.
David Akers (1975/88):
The 1876-S has the second lowest mintage of any of the very rare S Mint Half Eagles from 1858-1876 and it had the third fewest number of auction appearances in my survey after the 1864-S and 1862-S, ranking in the top 10% of the entire $5 series in that respect. Most known specimens are well worn, grading VF or less, and I consider this to be one of the rarest and most underrated Half Eagles in any condition. There is one gem uncirculated example in the John Hopkins University Collection (PCGS CoinFacts editor's note: sold in the 1979 Garrett sale.) All 1876-S Half Eagles have a "punchmark" in the earlobe and the tiny mintmark is always very weak.
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