David Akers wrote accurately when he noted that Gem quality 1890-CC Half Eagles are "rather rare." In fact, any 1890-CC Half Eagle is extremely rare in grades above MS64. The most impressive example of this date is the PCGS MS66 that sold all the way back in 2004 in a Heritage auction for $66,125. That example has not re-appeared on the market since then, and it would easily carry into six figures today.
David Akers (1975/88)
The 1890-CC is scarce, but not rare, in all grades. As a date, the 1890-CC is a bit more scarce than the 1882-CC but it is easier to locate in strictly uncirculated condition than the 1882-CC. It is comparable overall to the 1892-CC and 1893-CC and much more rare than the 1891-CC. Although many known specimens are only VF or EF, AU and even strictly uncirculated specimens can be obtained. However, gem quality mint state pieces are rather rare.