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Half-Cent

The Half Cent I find have always been a  scarce United States Coin but depending on your budget most are affordable in collector grades

The Half Cent was minted from 1793 - 1857

Liberty Head Type   1793  - 1797

Draped Bust Type   1800 - 1808

Clasic Head Type    1809  -1836

Braided Hair Type    1840 - 1857

1797                                                  NO                           This was sold but I was told it was lost in the mail. But someone signed for the coin

1800 STEMS                                     VF+                         $495        new very nice planchet      

 The 1804 Half Cent as a young kid in 1956 when I was 10 years old my older  brother Roy (5 years) would take me on a bike to the Rod & Gun Club

to the rifle range just before the sun would set.  The guys practicing with their 22 caliber rifles would shoot at 1/2 cent coins at 25 yards , 50 yards, & 100 yards .Every month we would find at least 9 to 20  1/2 cents  not damaged usually on the 100 yard marker. The Gun club would set a coin in a small slot attached to a wood close pin. There were 20 coins on the 25 yard  line , 50 coins on the 50 yard line  , & 20 set on the 100 yard line. The 1804 1/2 cent was usually the one you always found in change & the most  used at the rifle range.   The coin was attached to a string & if you hit the coin the close pin flew up in the air. Or that was how it was to work. Many times hitting the board or the close pin & the coin would go flying. One day we took 5 to the bank to change for a nickel & the teller said they were damaged & could not take them. Some guy said I know where you got these. We left & Roland out Dad brought them to the next town over but this time we gave him 50 with nicks or some type of damage . He turned them in & we went for ice cream. We kept all the good ones that were never hit.

Total mintage of the 1804 was 1,055,312 with  5 varieties very distinctive  varieties.    The plain 4 with stems,  the plain 4 no stems,   crosslet 4 stems, crosslet 4 no stems. Then their was the ugly one with a spike coming out of the bottom chin. We called this our Aunt Mable who hated us kids & beat us with   a  wood yard stick  But many years later around 1960 I found out it was a variety called spiked chin..

All the varieties you will recognize very easily.

From what I have seen the Crosslet 4 variety is  a C12 B11 R2

                                      the no stems  variety is C13 & the only variety I have ever seen

1804 No Stems Die state 13 B10 R1  is the most plentiful die state  plain 4 variety.

If you lok closr there is no boarder dentils & this dictates the die state

1804 PLAIN 4 NO STEMS                VG+                         $125                                               Variety the only one I know of =C13

1804 PLAIN 4 NO STEMS                VF                            $265                                              Total in Slab are around 40 & with just this many I dont understand

1804 PLAIN 4 NO STEMS                 EF                           $450                                               how they can have a Fine 12 of one, A Fine 15 of two

1804 PLAIN 4 NO STEMS                 EF                           $450                                               How much difference is there & where are the requirements

1804 PLAIN 4 NO STEMS                 EF                           $450                                               in print how to distinguish the difference??????????

1806 STEMS LARGE 6                      FINE+                     $185                                               The Oligarchy is always in control.FINE 15  Can any one show  

1806 STEMS LARGE 6                      EF                           $485                                               me the difference between Fine 12 & Fine 15.

1806 NO STEMS SMALL 6                VG                          $125                                                When did VF20-VF25-VF30-VF35   BECOME SO TECHNICAL  

1806 NO STEMS SMALL 6                FINE                       $175                                                YOU HAVE TO HAVE A GRADING COMPANY TELL YOU THE  

1806 NO STEMS SMALL 6                VF                           $285                                                GRADE.       

1806 NO STEMS SMALL 6                VF                           $285

1806 NO STEMS SMALL 6                EF                           $500

1807                                                    VG                          $140

The 1808  has a mintage of 400,000. This was always an  interesting coin to me. In 1972 I had several Coin Dealers from Monterey to San Francisco California tell me there were 2 Varieties   of the 1808 1/2 cent.

The first Variety is  the Norman Strike  & when I asked how is a normal strike a Variety I heard from all the dealers the same thing. A normal strike is a Variety.

The 2nd Variety was  1808 / 7 error with an 8 / over a 7. You can see part of the 7 on the top of the 8 usually on both ends of the 8. At a Coin Show in San Jose California A  old man man with a cane looked like he was going to fall down & I went out & put him in a chair gave him a Pepsi & a ham sandwich.

I asked him if he was OK & he said he had been trying to sell some coins & no one wanted them. I said let me look at them & he pulled out 4 small black books with a total of 52  1/2 Cents. I was quite astonished & understood why no one wanted the coins. Every Coin Dealer I ever asked a question of I wrote down the answer.  They dident have the time for 1/2 Cents or Large Cents to much work &  they only wanted Morgan Dollars. I said how long have you had these & he astonished me & said he got them out of change from the bank in his home town  in  New York by turning a Large Cent for 2  each 1/2 Cents He was 96 years old & at the age of 7 years old was Apprenticed to a Blacksmith & then at 10 years old he was Apprenticed to a Stone Mason where he continued his trade until  he turned 81 years old.. I asked him how much he wanted for the coins & he said $50.00 & I asked him if I could take a half hour  to go through the coins. He said OK & he said he would go out side & take a nap if the police left him alone.

​The first 4 coins I pull out to look at I new I couldent afford 1795 pole one good the other was VG. The next 2 coins were 1805 small 5 with stems. I shook my head & couldent believe what I had already looked at. around  10 minutes later Walter Breen came to my table . He new I bought a lot of  Large Cents & I asked him if he could look at this old mans coins. He sat at our back table & one hour  he said estimate was $110 Thousand Dollars. I asked him if I could go get the old man who owned the coins. He was sound asleep & I brought him back into the show & Walter talked to him& Walter had already called the Company he worked for & asked the old man if he would go to LA on the train with him & his company would put him up in a hotel. The Guy  said  I only want $50. I talked him into going with Walter. That afternoon they left for LA. I did not feel good about paying $50 when I new the collection was worth thousands. Three months latter Walter comes into the store & hands me a package. I opened it & it said thank you with $1,000 in it from the old man. The collection was worth $252,000. The old man moved back to New York & bought  his fathers 50 acre  land  & it was all grown with trees & bushes. On the land was a cemetery of his family from 1780  had all the stones repaired the old house rebuilt out of granite blocks to live out the rest of his life. 

​I had Dealers tell me I was crazy not just buying the collection but I always hope that when I am 90+years old some one will be honest with me.

​One variety  a C 3 is a nice scarce die strike  variety .   The 2nd 8 in the date was formed with the 0 punch from a fraction, punching one time & the second time above the first.  I was told & finally confirmed the die only had 180 no second 8 because it was broken & added later.


1808 LARGE 8                                   VG                           $138

1808 LARGE 8                                   VF25                        $295

1808 LARGE 8                                   VF30                        $310

1809                                                    VG                           $90                                                1809 Mintage is 1,154,572 with around 500 coins graded in slab.

The 1809 Half cent  die state you will usually findd will be C3  B4  Ri Ron Manley die state 1.0.

This variety always has a counter clock wise revers  . They also have cracks through star 3 & 4  I always  had to use a 10 power magnifier  or a loop to see the cracks. Many have weakness along the rim on lower grades.

​I new several of the early graders & like many people they thought they new everything but you will find that they did not understand or in my opinion which means nothing they really did not understand what they were doing or did a very good job when they started grading 1/2 Cents or Large Cents. This is really verified by the quantity in slabs verses the quantity of Morgan Dollars & I still dont think they do a great job there either..

1809                                                    VG                           $90 

1909                                                    VG+                         $95

1809                                                    FINE                        $97

1810                                                    VG                           $85

1812 12 STARS                                  FINE                        $95

1812 12 STARS                                  VF+                          $110

1812 13 STARS                                  FINE+                      $98

1812 13 STARS                                  VF                            $100

1812 13 STARS                                  VF                            $100

1812 13 STARS                                  VF+                          $110 

The 1826 Half Cent has 2 Varieties very few people pay attention to.

The major problem is the I in LIBERTY.   You will find it very weak all the way up to UNC .

​VF 1/2 will be missing at the top.   AU missing in the middle.

1826 13 STARS                                  VG*                          $82

1826 13 STARS                                  FINE +                      $90                       

The   1828 Half Cent has 2 varieties many people miss when looking at the coin.

There is the 12 Star Variety   &  the 13 Star Variety with a combination mintage of  606,000

1828 12 STARS                                  FINE                         $95                                   

1828 12 STARS                                  VF+                           $112

1828 13 STARS                                  FINE +                      $98

1828 13 STARS                                  VF                             $100

1828 13 STARS                                  VF                             $100

1828 13 STARS                                  VF+                           $110

1828 13 STARS                                  EF                             $120

1828 13 STATS                                   EF                             $120 

1828 13 STARS                                  EF                             $120

1829                                                    VF+                           $90

1832                                                    VF                             $105

1832                                                    VF                             $105

1832                                                    VF                             $105

1832                                                    VF+                           $110

1832                                                    EF                             $135

 The 1833 Half Cent is a very interesting coin for several reasons . The biggest reason is   most likely others collectors & dealers have never to my knowledge found out the true mintage. I did have  a dealer told me many years ago he new the true mintage but it was not  his responsibility to tell me what it was. So knowing over 60 coin dealers around the country that sold a lt of 1/2 cents  I wrote a fax & letters to each & each told me things I could not put on paper they have heard from this same guy from  ?  & they dont even talk to him any more. In the 1970s  most dealers still did not have a computer.

Sad when coin  dealers  do not want to talk to a Coin  Dealer about information to help collectors.

Except, I did have  one who said  when you walk behind cows after they have eaten & you get to close to their tail  you start to smell like them. I hung this on our wall for a long time. I think he was telling me the guy was full of excrement ..  But the 2 figures every one has stuck with is   103,000   &    120,000.

This figure also came from Walter Breen in September 1972 at the Santa Clara  Coin Convention in Sunnyvale California. 

All of the 1833 1/2 cents  that I have bought & sold are C1  B1  R1 Manly Die State  1.0   . 

As of last year I have only sold a quantity of 312 coins mostly in EF condition.

They were only produced from a single pair of dies & I know up to 1970 had been a common date.

At Gillios Boston New England show in  1980  A man told me  there was a friend of his that use to go to  a coin shop GUTTAG BROTHERS IN NEW YORK CITY  & he bought hundreds of UNC 1833 coins from them. I was busy &  never did get his name to talk to him more.

NGC told me a good 10 years ago there was also a C2 but I have never seen it.

1833                                                    EF                             $125       

1833                                                    EF                             $125                         

1833                                                    EF40                         $130

1833                                                    EF45                         $140

1834                                                    EF                             $150

1835                                                    FINE                          $90

1835                                                    VF                             $100

1835                                                     VF35                        $100

1835                                                     EF45                        $180

1835                                                     EF45                        $180

1835                                                     AU                            $190

1849                                                     EF                            $145

1849                                                     EF+                          $175

1849                                                     EF45                        $240

1851                                                     VF+                          $120

1851                                                     VF+                          $120

1851                                                      EF                            $125

1853                                                      VF+                          $95

1853                                                      EF                            $105

1853                                                      EF+                          $130

1854                                                      EF                            $120

1854                                                      EF+                          $130

1855                                                      EF+                          $130

1856                                                      EF                            $110

1857                                                      EF                            $170

​1857                                                      EF                            $180