The Coronet $5 half eagle was in active production from 1839 to 1908. This series is often called the Liberty Head half eagle.
In 1866, the design was revised by adding the motto IN GOD WE TRUST on a flowing ribbon on the reverse above the eagle.
Most of the half eagle “with motto” dates are plentiful and belong to the “generic gold” category. Generally speaking, only in grades MS-66 and higher do they become elusive and challenging.(1)
The 1873-CC Coronet half eagle most definitely is NOT a generic gold coin.
In 1873, the Carson City Mint struck the second lowest mintage of any “CC” half eagle, prioritizing its resources instead to production of silver dimes, quarters, half dollars, and the new trade collar. By year’s end, only 7,416 half eagles were delivered.(2)
Virtually none of the 1873-CC half eagles were set aside for posterity. There are only two specimens surviving to this day in mint state condition. Most entered circulation, saw heavy usage, and eventually had a rendezvous with the melting pot.
In their 2001 book “Gold Coins of the Carson City Mint”, authors Douglas Winter and James L. Halperin had this to say about the 1873-CC: "There are only a handful of Liberty Head half eagles that can compare to the 1873-CC in terms of overall rarity and, in particular, rarity in high grades..."
Indeed, the 1873-CC is a very rare date in any condition, boasting price histories trending far above average going back as far as we can research. As long as coin collecting remains a vibrant endeavor, expect more of the same in the future.
|Estimated survivors in all grades: 70
? The survivor estimate from PCGS represents an average of one or more experts' opinions as to how many examples survive of a particular coin in all grades. Survival estimates include coins that are raw, certified by PCGS, and certified by other grading services.
Learn more at PCGS.
|PCGS Rarity Scale: 8.3
? The 'PCGS CoinFacts Rarity Scale' assesses the relative rarity of all U.S. coins, based on estimated surviving examples. The scale runs from 1.0 to 10.0. The higher the number, the rarer the coin.
Learn more at PCGS.
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