1839 1C Booby Head, BN MS65BN Certification #21510223, PCGS #1751
The so-called "Booby Head" of 1839 is a modification of the bust of Liberty that shows one of her hair strands curling around the truncation of the bust. In real life, this is anatomically impossible and it is doubtful that a sculptor would add such an unusual feature to a physical bust. The nickname was first applied by Dr. Montroville Dickeson in 1859, then standardized in 1868 by Ebenezer Locke Mason, Jr. It has been in use ever since and is one of the more distinctive varieties in the Matron Head series of Large Cents.
The "Booby Head" appears on ten different, distinct die varieties and, according to Breen, they comprise "...more than half the total mintage of 1839 cents..." This conclusion is confirmed by the PCGS Population Report, which shows the relative populations of "Booby Head" and non-"Booby Head" Large Cents.
High grade examples above MS66 are extremely rare. Red-Brown examples are very rare, and full Red examples are exceedingly rare (in any grade).