1804 Draped Bust Half Cent

Discussion in 'US Coins Forum' started by kanga, Apr 4, 2020.

  1. kanga

    kanga 65 Year Collector Supporter

    Okay, because of COVID-19 I can't go out and get coins.
    But thanks to CG, Heritage and eBay I can get the coins to come to me.

    A new interest area, Draped Bust Half Cents.
    I'm looking for coins in the VF-XF range.
    That means there's 5 Red Book date/varieties that are out of my "reasonable" price range.
    But if I look for those 5 in Fine I can reduce that number to 3.
    If/When I start looking for Cohen varieties that changes the numbers.

    Anyway, this is only my second Draped Bust Half Cent; the one I already have I got for my type set 10-15 years ago.
    I haven't ID'ed the Cohen Number yet.
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  3. Mainebill

    Mainebill Wild Bill

  4. physics-fan3.14

    physics-fan3.14 You got any more of them.... prooflikes? Supporter

    Slab appears quite scratchy - but that reverse looks quite nice.
  5. kanga

    kanga 65 Year Collector Supporter

    Oops, just to unconfuse my post, "CG" should have been "GC".
  6. johnmilton

    johnmilton Well-Known Member

    The die variety is Cohen - 10. It is the most common Crosslet 4, Stems variety and is rated as an R-1. The diagnostic is the crosslet 4 and the blob of metal that runs from the "R" in "AMERICA" to the rim. That reverse was paired with three other obverses.

    There was a time when I wanted all 12 of the 1804 die varieties. I got down to one vareity, and then I gave up. I had a chance to buy a ground salvage piece for $7,000, and I came to the conclustion that "This is nuts." There were about a dozen examples of the rarest variety, 1804 Cohen 2, at the time. There are more known now.
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2020
    LakeEffect and bradgator2 like this.
  7. kanga

    kanga 65 Year Collector Supporter

    I've got Manley's book.
    Now I can test myself and see if I can use it correctly.

    And I'll take the time to polish the slab and get rid of the scratches.
  8. kanga

    kanga 65 Year Collector Supporter

    Finally got around to ID'ing the Cohen variety.
    And I ended up agreeing with @johnmilton
    C-10 (and Die State 1.0)
  9. CircCam

    CircCam Victory

    Nice coin and interesting year- if I recall correctly 1804 was the year that Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr dueled and Hamilton succumbed to his wounds following it.

    Hard to imagine the sitting Vice President agreeing to that but there it is.
  10. johnmilton

    johnmilton Well-Known Member

    Arron Burr was "a piece of work." Years ago, I read about his activities in what was then the western states (now Tennessee and Kentucky). The allegation was that Burr was looking to conspire with Mexico to break off a portion of the United States and form independent country. One of his chief supporters was General James Wilkinson. It is now known that Wilkinson was on the take from the Mexican Government.

    The author of the book, which now escapes my memory, wrote it with the idea that Burr was innocent or at least there was not enough evidence to convict him. When I finished, I thought that he was guilty and should have been taken out and strung up for treason.
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  11. CircCam

    CircCam Victory

    Indeed! Arrested and acquitted in 1807.. what an interesting court room to sit in for that one.
    johnmilton likes this.
  12. bradgator2

    bradgator2 Supporter! Supporter

    Fun. I have the same exact coin (1804 crosslet 4 with stems) except not nearly as nice. NGC VG details. My only Draped Bust Half Cent B3ED44E2-89C5-4506-9C06-E34C077594D7.jpeg 230D5A3B-EAB5-4815-9324-1C3F4CCA55DC.jpeg
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  13. Jack D. Young

    Jack D. Young Well-Known Member

    Yours is actually a C-6; these are avidly collected for the die state/ reverse die breaks and also hugely counterfeited (not your example.)!
    bradgator2 likes this.
  14. bradgator2

    bradgator2 Supporter! Supporter

    Is the Cohen 6 only found with the “spiked chin” obverse? I dont have the proper reference so I am stuck with what I can find on the intrawebz. The PCGS coin facts has this writeup, but it’s on the spiked chin variety:
  15. Jack D. Young

    Jack D. Young Well-Known Member

    Yes @bradgator2, the C-6 is only found with the spiked chin and "fingerprint"- my example as follows:

    Gene Braig was an EAC member and avid collector of this variety and theorized what the latest (unverified) die state would look like and actually had examples made (his die state "13.0") and I have an example of one:

    The Chinese counterfeit "family" examples use a modified obverse without the fingerprint and modified "spike" and re-stamped dates (1800-1808) with a modified early die state reverse. A documented example:

    Interesting you asked, as I am giving an on-line presentation of this "family" next weekend!
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  16. gronnh20

    gronnh20 Well-Known Member

    Is that an open invitation?
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  17. bradgator2

    bradgator2 Supporter! Supporter

    So cool. Thank you. Now that I know what to look for.... and even though mine is VG details by NGC, I can make out the spike fairly easily and just barely make out some of the fingerprint. I had never noticed either.

    There is no attribution on the NGC label.
    Jack D. Young likes this.
  18. kanga

    kanga 65 Year Collector Supporter

    Yeh, the TPG's won't include an attribution for most coins.
    They rather charge you for that effort.
    I think it's about $12.50 at PCGS.
  19. bradgator2

    bradgator2 Supporter! Supporter

    @Jack D. Young

    I've updated my personal notes on my coin with some of the tidbits on the NGC and PCGS websites. Does this sound accurate?:

    The 1804 Spiked Chin Half Cent is an interesting variety caused when damage occurred to an obverse die, resulting in a sharp, spike-like projection jutting out from Liberty's chin.

    The obverse die used previously for Cohen varieties 1 and 3 became damaged, presumably from heavy contact with some piece of machinery, and it continued to be used for four more die marriages with a jutting projection affectionately called by numismatists the Spiked Chin (C-5 through C-8). The most often seen of these is C-8, though C-6 is a favorite with die state collectors for the progressive failure of its reverse die.

    The Spiked Chin itself is considered a die state, because examples from the same obverse die are known without the damage. However, the Spiked Chin obverse was used in combination with more than one reverse, so it is also known as a die variety. The Spiked Chin Half Cent is fairly common, but it commands a premium because of its listing as a major variety in most (if not all) price catalogs.

    Of the several Spiked Chin varieties, the Cohen 6 is the most interesting because of the numerous die states caused when the reverse dies deteriorated over time. The reverse die started out in a nearly perfect state than began to crack around the legends. Eventually, pieces of the die began to fall off, leaving cuds on the coins. In the latest states, the Cohen 6 presents a massive cud along the reverse rim from 2 o'clock to 7:30. The late Gene Braig was fascinated with this variety, he collected as many different die states as he could find, and he produced the most recent and extensive listing of the die progression, with numbers for each distinct die state.

    All of the Spiked Chin varieties are also Crosslet 4's, but the Spiked Chin designation takes precedence.

    Jack D. Young likes this.
  20. bradgator2

    bradgator2 Supporter! Supporter

    Just out of curiosity, do you think the "crosslet 4, stems" on the PCGS holder in your original post was an additional $12.50 to have on there?
  21. kanga

    kanga 65 Year Collector Supporter

    IMO, no.
    I think this is the sort of thing that PCGS does automatically on certain coins or coin series.
    (But I could be wrong. Maybe I'll ask them.)
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