The Arlington Collection Image Gallery

Selected Favorite Coins from A.C. Dwyer's Type Collection

About the Coin

The 1843 Liberty Head half eagle is definitely one of the more common dates with a mintage of over 600,000. However, NGC has graded less than a dozen higher with MS-65 being the highest.

This example from The Arlington Collection is tied with two others as the finest recovered from the shipwreck. It is one of several hundred gold coins recovered from the S.S. New York shipwreck. This coin is from lot #2045 in the Stack's July 27-28, 2008 auction sale at Baltimore.

I had a trusted dealer represent me at the auction which cost me another 5%. The money was well worth it since most of S.S. New York coins were commanding some hefty premiums above their non-shipwreck counterparts.

The Liberty Head half eagle was a very long running series as they were struck from 1839 through 1908. During those 70 years, not a single year was missed although there were a few years with very small mintages such as the 1875 with only 200 half eagles struck in Philadelphia. 1866 saw the one major design change when the motto "In God We Trust" was added to the reverse.

The cool thing about the series is that you can collect an example from each of the following mints: Carson City, Charlotte, Dahlonega, Denver, New Orleans, Philadelphia, and San Francisco.

Designer: Christian Gobrecht
Weight: 8.359 grams
Diameter: approx. 21.6mm, reeded edge
Composition: 90% gold, 10% copper

1843 $5 Gold Half Eagle

Liberty Head — S.S. New York

SS New York Population

Tied for finest from the shipwreck

1843 $5 Gold Half Eagle SS New York Obverse
1843 $5 Gold Half Eagle SS New York Reverse

The Arlington Collection of U.S. Type Coins