A set of Type II One Dollar Gold Pieces

Discussion in 'US Coins Forum' started by johnmilton, Aug 16, 2022.

  1. johnmilton

    johnmilton Well-Known Member

    Over on the "Coin Chat" area there was an 1854 Type II gold dollar with a nasty hole in it. During the discussion, I pointed out the Type II gold dollar is a key coin in the 12 piece U.S. Gold Type set. One collector stated he didn't know that.

    That got me to thinking that it might be fun to show you a complete Type II gold dollar set. Don't get too excited. There are only six coins in the set.

    The Type II gold dollar was introduced mid way through 1854. There are Type I and Type II 1854 gold dollars. I'll show the Type Is in another post if there is interest. The idea behind the Type II dollars was to give the coin a larger diameter with the same weight. The Type Is were 15 mm in diameter; the Type IIs were 17 mm.

    1854 Type I Gold Dollar

    This coin was only issued at the Philadelphia Mint in 1854. The mintage was 783,943. Almost immediately the mint personnel noted that the design was hard to strike well. This one is PCGS graded MS-64.

    1854 Ty 2 Gold Dol All.jpg


    In 1855 four U.S. mints struck the Type II Gold Dollar.


    Mintage 758,269. The 1855 is about as common as the 1854. This example shows heavy die clashing, which is an indicator of the problems the mint had striking these pieces.

    I really like this one. It's well struck, and has bright luster. PCGS graded it MS-63.

    1855 Gold Dol All.jpg


    Mintage 9,803. The 1855-C almost always comes poorly struck. The Charlotte Mint never got the hang of how to strike the larger, 17 mm dollar coins. This one is graded EF-45. You pay a lot more for a higher grade and not get much more coin.

    1855-C Gold Dollar All.jpg


    1855-D Gold Dol All.jpg

    Mintage 1811. Yes, with a mintage like that, this is a very scarce coin. The estimated population is about 80 pieces. This one is PCGS graded EF-45. The reverse is very sharp, and luster looks like an AU-50 to me.

    New Orleans

    1855-O Gold Dol All.jpg

    Mintage 55,000. This coin is not that scarce, but finding well struck ones takes some searching. NGC graded this one AU-58.

    1856-S Gold Dollar

    1856-S Gold Dol All.jpg

    Mintage 24,600. By 1856 the Philadelphia Mint personnel had given up on the Type II design and had decided to replace it with the Type III. The Type III gold dollar looked very much like the Three Dollar Gold Piece. Aside from the Charlotte Mint, which could have strike the larger gold dollars well, the new design worked.

    Things moved a lot slower in 1856, and the dies sent to the San Francisco Mint were for the Type II dollar. This coin is not scarce as Type II gold dollars go, but with a mintage of less than 25,000, you will have to hunt for the coin. A fair number of examples, including this one, have a doubled "S" mint mark. That is not rare or unusual. This one is PCGS graded AU-55.

    Last edited: Aug 16, 2022
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  3. psuman08

    psuman08 Member

    spirityoda and johnmilton like this.
  4. johnmilton

    johnmilton Well-Known Member

    To round things out, here are the Type I 1854 gold dollars. They were issued from three mints.


    1854 $1 Gold All.jpg

    Mintage 855,502 This is viewed as one of those common Philadelphia Mint gold dollars. It is no where near as common as the 1853 Philadelphia Mint coin which has a mintage of over 4 million. NGC graded this one MS-63, which seems a bit conservative.


    1854-D Gold Dollar All.jpg

    mintage 2,935 With a mintage like that, you know that this one is scarce, but it's not as rare as some made it out to be in the 1960s. Walter Breen wrote that there for 25 to 30 of these coins, "perhaps less." Dave Bowers puts the number of survivors at 100 to 140.

    PCGS graded this coin EF-45. It suits me because I could buy it without having to take out a second mortgage on the house. It's just a nice, no problem, circulated example.


    1854-S Gold Dollar All.jpg

    Mintage 14,032. This gold coin was made during the year that the San Francisco Mint opened, and that's the reason I bought it years ago. It's the only 1854 San Francisco mint gold piece that is affordable, at least from my point of view. Dave Bowers estimates that there are 360 to 580 survivors. Among those Bowers estimated the Mint State population to be from 60 to 80.

    NGC graded this one MS-62. It has some marks, but the design details are all there, and the luster is strong.

    There was an 1854-C listed in The Red Book for a number of years. The reported mintage was 4. Later it was discovered that the coins never existed. It was added to the records to correct a bookkeeping entry.
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  5. wxcoin

    wxcoin Getting no respect for 66+ Supporter

    Nice set!
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  6. SensibleSal66

    SensibleSal66 U.S Casual Collector / Error Collector

    Nice Coins!! :)
    johnmilton likes this.
  7. ksparrow

    ksparrow Coin Hoarder Supporter

    Great post, and superb coins. thanks John M. !
  8. Collecting Nut

    Collecting Nut Borderline Hoarder

    Very nice and thanks for the post. I learned from it.
    johnmilton likes this.
  9. micbraun

    micbraun coindiccted

    Excellent thread, lovely coins, thanks for posting!
    johnmilton likes this.
  10. lardan

    lardan Supporter! Supporter

    Very nice coins shown and great comments about them.
    johnmilton likes this.
  11. Randy Abercrombie

    Randy Abercrombie Supporter! Supporter

    I have said before and I’ll say it again…. If there were one person that I could spend a day with them at their coin desk, it would be @johnmilton. I do love your posts.
  12. CoinCorgi

    CoinCorgi Tell your dog I said hi!

    Yeah, I wouldn't kick 'em out my collection for eating crackers.

    But I do feel sorry for the Type III $1 gold coins!!! Right? Type II but with BIG HEADS!

    My 1885. Almost as rare as @johnmilton 's 1855-D ;)

    G$1 1885 obv.jpg

    G$1 1885 rev.jpg
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  13. johnmilton

    johnmilton Well-Known Member

    The gold dollars in the 1880s have low mintages, but by then the coin almost never circulated, and the vast majority of survivors are Mint State. These coins were collected, hoarded for speculation or used in jewelry. The Proof mintages were high, and the coins are the most common among the pre 1933 Proof gold coins, but many were ruined as jewelry pieces. For a couple of years, the mint actually made addition pieces to discourage hoarding because the low mintages would make people think that these coins be great collectors’ items.
    CoinCorgi likes this.
  14. medoraman

    medoraman Supporter! Supporter

    Nice set. Yeah, the gold type set was always the $3 first, then the $1 Type 2 as the keys, at least in terms of scarcity though usually the price of gold made the $20's at least more expensive than the gold dollars.
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