A survey of 19th century business strike coin
G$1 TYPE 3 (1856-1889)

Obverse:

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Reverse:

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Coin Details

Origin/Country: UNITED STATES
Design Description: GOLD DOLLARS - TYPE 3
Item Description: G$1 1881
Full Grade: NGC MS 67
Owner: BillJones

Set Details

Custom Sets: This coin is not in any custom sets.
Competitive Sets: 19th Century Gold   Score: 3601
A survey of 19th century business strike coin   Score: 3601
Bill's Gold Dollars, Year by Year   Score: 3952
Research: NGC Coin Explorer NGC Coin Price Guide
NGC US Coin Census for Gold Dollars (1849-1889)

Owner Comments:

The Type 3 gold dollar design corrected the strike problems that had plagued the previous design. Aside for some poorly made coins that the Charlotte and Dahlonega mints issued, these coins are almost always sharply struck.

James Longacre adapted his design for the $3 gold piece for this coin. Although it is quite attractive, it is yet another example of the odd American practice of depicting a Causation woman wearing a Native American headdress.

The Civil War broke out only a few years after the mint introduced the Type 3 gold dollar. During the war all gold coins were extensively hoarded because they were worth more in paper currency than their face value.

Following the war, the U.S. monetary system continued to be in chaos. For a while dollars in gold, silver and paper all had different values or buying power in the economy, and gold was usually considered to be the most reliable. From the end of the Civil War until 1889 when Congress ended the issuance of the gold dollar, few of the coins were seen in circulation. As a result mintages were low, and most of the surviving coins are in Mint State or very close to that level of preservation.

The 1881 gold dollar shown above is a superb MS-67 example with proof-like surfaces. Although Mint State 1881 gold dollars are not rare, this piece is outstanding.


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