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Obverse of 1848 Half Eagle     Reverse of 1848 Half Eagle


1848 FIVE DOLLARS
OR HALF EAGLE

PCGS Nos: 8236, 8438

Mintage:

Circulation strikes: 260,775
Proofs: 2 known

Designer: Christian Gobrecht

Diameter: 21.65 millimeters

Metal content:
Gold - 90%
Other - 10%

Weight: 129 grains (8.24 grams)

Edge: Reeded

Mintmark: None (for Philadelphia) below the eagle

Images courtesy of David Akers Numismatics, Inc.

Notes:
David Akers observed that the reverse of this date was also used to strike the Proof Half Eagles of 1844, 1845, 1846 and possibly 1847.  According to Akers, the die shows "die scratches or file marks in the left field at the eagle's leg feathers and the three lower wing feathers closest to the body."

The finest Uncirculated examples graded by PCGS are 5 MS-63's.

The finest Proof example graded by PCGS is a single PR-63.

Significant examples:
PCGS Proof-63 (illustrated above)
- Colonel E.H.R. Green (Akers' attribution to the William Woodin collection is most likely incorrect) - Palace Collection of Egypt sale (King Farouk of Egypt), Lot 251 (along with 12 other coins) - John Jay Pittman - David Akers Numismatics, Inc. "The John Jay Pittman Collection", October 21-23, 1997, Lot 985, illustrated - Bowers and Merena Galleries, "The Harry W. Bass, Jr. Collection, Part IV Sale", November 20-21, 2000, Lot 410, illustrated, sold for $64,400.00

Proof
- National Numismatic Collection at the Smithsonian Institution

NGC MS-65
- Heritage Numismatic Auctions, Inc.'s, "Summer 2001 Long Beach Signature Sale", May 31-June 2, 2001, Lot 8963, plated, unsold - Ira & Larry Goldberg Coins & Collectibles, Inc.'s "The Dr. Jacob Terner Collection", May 26-27, 2003, Lot 902, illustrated, bought back by the consignor for $40,250.00

Recent appearances:
PCGS MS-62
- Bowers and Merena Galleries, "The Harry W. Bass, Jr. Collection, Part IV Sale", November 20-21, 2000, Lot 411, illustrated, sold for $6,325.00  From the Bowers and Merena sale of the Louis E. Eliasberg, Sr. Collection, October 1982, Lot 448

PCGS AU-58
- Heritage Numismatic Auctions, Inc.'s "Philadelphia 2000 Signature Sale", August 6-7, 2000, Lot 7239, not illustrated, sold for $776.25

NGC AU-58
- Ira & Larry Goldberg Coins & Collectibles, Inc.'s "The California Sale", October 2-3, 2000, Lot 902, sold for $575.00

NGC XF-40, Extremely Fine
- Stack's "65th Anniversary Sale", October 17-19, 2000, Lot 1738, not plated, sold for $230.00

Very Fine
- Stack's "The University of Notre Dame Sale", March 20-21, 2001, Lot 1112, not plated, sold for $161.00

Sources and/or recommended reading:
"Walter Breen's Complete Encyclopedia of U.S. and Colonial Coins" by Walter Breen

"The PCGS Population Report, July 2003" by The Professional Coin Grading Service