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1879-O SILVER DOLLAR

PCGS Nos: 7090, 7091, 97091, 7345

Mintage:

Circulation strikes: 2,887,000
Proofs: est. 12

Designer: George T. Morgan

Diameter: 38.1 millimeters

Metal Content:
Silver - 90%
Copper - 10%

Weight: 26.73 grams

Edge: Reeded

Mintmark: "O" (for New Orleans) beneath the bow on the reverse

Images courtesy of Heritage Numismatic Auctions

ex - The January 2000 "FUN" Sale, Lot 7031, PCGS MS-64 Deep Mirror Prooflike

Recent appearances:
ANACS MS-65.  Ex - Superior Galleries' "Pre-Long Beach Sale", October 1-3, 2000, Lot 3592, illustrated, sold for $977.50

PCGS MS-65.  Ex - Heritage Numismatic Auctions, Inc.'s "Philadelphia 2000 Signature Sale", August 6-7, 2000, Lot 6234, illustrated, not sold

PCGS MS-65.  Ex - Bowers & Merena Galleries' "The Rarities Sale", January 3, 2001, Lot 289, illustrated, not sold

NGC MS-65.  Ex - Bowers & Merena Galleries' "The Cabinet of Lucien M. LaRiviere, Part III", May 21, 2001, Lot 57, not illustrated, sold for $552.00

NGC MS-65.  Ex - Bowers & Merena Galleries' "The Cabinet of Lucien M. LaRiviere, Part III", May 21, 2001, Lot 59, illustrated, not sold

PCGS MS-65.  Ex - Bowers & Merena Galleries' "The Lake Geneva Sale", June 28-29, 2001, Lot 1035, illustrated, sold for $2,415.00

Gem Brilliant Uncirculated.  Ex- Stack's "The September Sale", September 12-13, 2000, Lot 647, sold for $322.00

ANACS MS-64.  Ex - Superior Galleries' "Pre-Long Beach Sale", October 1-3, 2000, Lot 3593, not illustrated, sold for $258.75

NGC MS-64.  Ex- Heritage Numismatic Auctions, Inc.'s "October 2000 Long Beach Sale" October 5-7, 2000, Lot 8194, not illustrated, sold for $517.50

PCGS MS-64.  Ex - Ira & Larry Goldberg Coins & Collectibles, Inc.'s "Benson Collection, Part I", February 16, 18-20, 2001, Lot 2008, illustrated, sold for $391.00

SEGS MS-63 Deep Mirror Prooflike.  Ex - Superior Galleries' "The ANA 2001 National Money Show Auction", March 8-9, 2001, Lot 362, unsold

NGC MS-63.  Ex - Heritage Numismatic Auctions, Inc.'s "Long Beach Signature Sale", May 31-June 2, 2001, Lot 6363, not illustrated, sold for $103.50

MS-63.  Ex - Ira & Larry Goldberg Coins & Collectibles, Inc.'s "Benson Collection, Part I", February 16, 18-20, 2001, Lot 2009, not illustrated, sold for $75.00

MS-62.  Ex - Ira & Larry Goldberg Coins & Collectibles, Inc.'s "Benson Collection, Part I", February 16, 18-20, 2001, Lot 2010, not illustrated, sold for $34.00

Notes:
The 1879-O Morgan Silver Dollar is readily obtainable except in Gem condition.  The most common Uncirculated grade is MS-63, followed by MS-62, due primarily to the poor striking quality that seems to be typical of this date.  Gem examples can present a real challenge to the collector and are difficult to obtain.  The finest examples certified by PCGS are 9 MS-66's, a single MS-65 Prooflike, and 2 MS-65 Deep Mirror Prooflikes.  

Nicely struck examples which display 85% or better detailing of the hair above Liberty's ear and of the feathers on the eagle's breast should be worth a premium.

Breen wrote that 12 Proofs were struck on February 20, 1879 "on reopening of the New Orleans branch as a coining facility" (the Mint had been closed since 1861, when the Confederacy took it over).  PCGS has certified 5 "Branch Mint" Proofs of this date - 3 PRBM-64s and 2 PRBM-65s.

Sources and/or recommended reading:
"The PCGS Population Report, October 2003" by The Professional Coin Grading Service