Superb Specimen 1794 Half Dime, First Date of Issue and Finest Seen by PCGS

Half dimes have been numismatic favorites for a long time. The first in-depth study of this denomination was done by Harold Newlin in 1883. In 1931 a second and more comprehensive study was done by Dr. Daniel Valentine and published by the American Numismatic Society. This was followed by the Logan-McCloskey book in use today.

The D. Brent Pogue Collection has a complete collection of early half dimes from 1794 to 1837, all of which are in remarkable grades. Highlights include the famous 1792 half disme and the ultimate rare date, the 1802.

The 1794 featured here is of special quality: Specimen-67 (PCGS). This incredibly beautiful 1794 half dime is another “wonder coin.” It will nicely satisfy the desire and dream of anyone building a type set or variety collection of ultra-quality. In an earlier Heritage offering it was described as “remarkable for its strike, reflectivity, lack of contact, and overall quality.” This was far and away the finest seen, a coin of “immense importance.”

Notes: Although dies for 1794-dated half dimes were prepared in that year, the only silver coinage comprised half dollars and dollars. The half dime dies were held over and first used in 1795. There seems to have been no desire to use the 1794 dies first, as evidenced by the 1795 variety whose reverse die state is earlier than one of the 1794-dated varieties using the same die. Many times from 1793 into the 1820s, yearly mintage numbers do not reflect the number of coins struck bearing that date.

The coinage of half dimes was sporadic in the early years. First was the 1792 half disme, made prior to the opening of the Philadelphia Mint facility, followed by Flowing Hair issues dated 1794 and 1795 and the Draped Bust obverse, Small Eagle reverse pieces of 1796 and 1797. After that there was no coinage until 1800, the start of the Draped Bust obverse and Heraldic Eagle reverse type. Mintages of 1801, 1802 (in particular), 1803, and 1805 were modest; 1804 was skipped. No further half dimes were made until 1829 when John Reich’s Capped Bust design was utilized.

If you are a half dime specialist or plan to be, the D. Brent Pogue Collection offering will be definitive!

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