In 1859, James Ross Snowden unsuccessfully requested permission from the Treasury Secretary to create patterns and restrikes of rare coins for sale to collectors, and in that year, dealers began offering plain edge 1804 dollars to the public. For example, many fake Trade Dollars are struck from silver and are the correct weight. , Roberts delivered the first set of coins to Said bin Sultan on October 1, 1835. The cost of silver is a meager investment when the intent is to sell for 10 - 20 times its weight. In 1999, a Class I example sold for $4.14 million, then the highest price paid for any coin. The 1804 dollar or Bowed Liberty Dollar was a dollar coin struck by the Mint of the United States, of which fifteen specimens are currently known to exist. This page addresses counterfeit dollars between 1798 and 1804. A Genuine 1804 Dollar; A Counterfeit 1804 Dollar; With the many email inquiries we receive regarding the 1804 Dollar we thought it would be helpful to show a real one against a fake. It will save you money next time you decide to sell or buy silver dollars. They are identified by nicknames based on prominent owners, or the first individuals known to have possessed the coins. A. In total, only 15 specimens are known to exist. [d][e] The dollars minted for the diplomatic gift sets, as well as other examples struck with the same dies, are collectively known as "Class I" 1804 dollars. With regards to the 1804 silver dollar… In the early days of the Mint, dies were saved and reused as an economic measure.  According to Spink, the set was offered to him by two women whom he believed were descendants of Anna Leonowens, tutor of the children of Rama IV (half-brother and heir of Rama III) and fictionalized protagonist of the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical The King and I. Class I dollars were made around 1834. The controversy prompted William E. DuBois, Mint Assayer, to try, in 1860, to recall the examples of the 1804 dollar in private hands.  However, the edge lettering on all Class I 1804 dollars is deformed and partially obliterated, meaning that they were not struck in an open-collared coinage press as was used in 1804, but one which used a steel collar that was not introduced to the Mint until 1833. ", According to Newman and Bressett, the manner in which the 1804 dollars were produced is proof that none were struck in 1804.  Roberts died in Macau on June 12, 1836, before he could initiate contact with any other nations. , From the time numismatists became aware of 1804 dollars, they have commanded high prices, both in relation to their face value and the numismatic value of other silver dollars. [g] One such coin in the collection of the San Francisco Mint was described by them as genuine from 1887 to 1927. (The 1804 Dollar was struck only in proof and not until the mid-1830s.)  In 1793, President George Washington signed into law a bill which declared Spanish milled dollars legal tender, provided that they weighed no less than 415 grains (26.9 g), which meant that at the lowest weight allowed by law, the Spanish dollars would contain approximately 0.5 percent less silver than the United States dollar coins. As many numismatists know, there isn’t “a” single type of silver dollar, but in fact many types. Unless you go to the Smithsonian in Washington D.C. … On June 30, Edmund P. Kennedy, commodore of the diplomatic fleet, wrote to the State Department that he had "directed that the presents [which remained ungifted due to Roberts’ death] be forwarded to the United States". 1804 Second Reverse, Class III – 6 minted. There is a degree of mystery on exactly when these 1804 silver dollars were minted, though by most accounts numismatists believe it was around 1834 or 1835 that these special presentation pieces were struck. A.  Interest in coin collecting and the 1804 dollars began increasing, and by 1860, the dollars saw extensive coverage by numismatists.  At the time of the sale, this was the highest price paid for any coin. Auction prices reached $1,000 by 1885, and in the mid-twentieth century, the coins realized over $30,000. Lately, we have experienced a sharp rise in calls from people who want to know how much their 1804 silver dollar is worth. Weren’t there thousands of silver dollars made in 1804? Instead of being worth millions of dollars these coins …  Two sets of coins, minted in proof finish, were completed and delivered along with their boxes to Roberts shortly prior to his departure on the USS Peacock on April 27, 1835. Haseltine.  The coin, which is the sole known Class II specimen in existence, was struck over an 1857 Swiss shooting thaler minted for the federal shooting festival held in Bern. Most of them are fakes, because genuine coins are so valuable.  Later, in a letter dated December 2, 1834, Forsyth directed Moore to include "national emblems" (including an eagle and stars) on the exterior of the cases.  In 1960, a Class III dollar fetched $28,000 at an auction conducted by Stack's, a coin firm, and the same coin reached $36,000 at another Stack's sale in 1963. All existing 1804's were actually made after 1834 (in 0.900 silver) and have slightly variant weights. On the surface, the 1802 would appear to be the rarest Heraldic Eagle Reverse dollar with a reported mintage of just … There were two empty openings in the case: one the size of a, Electrotypes were created by making a wax impression of both sides of the coin, coating the impressions with, Laws of the United States Relating to the Coinage, 1892, "$1.8 Million Silver Dollar No 'Saigon Copy, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=1804_dollar&oldid=997983179, Pages containing links to subscription-only content, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Heraldic representation of an eagle holding a scroll reading ", King of Siam Presentation Specimen/Siam Specimen, Sultan of Muscat Presentation Specimen/Watters Specimen, Driefus–Rosenthal Specimen/Rosenthal Specimen, This page was last edited on 3 January 2021, at 05:12.  As a result, the United States silver dollars and unworn Spanish dollars were largely forced out of circulation in accordance with Gresham's law; the lighter Spanish dollars were shipped in quantity for circulation in the United States, while the heavier pieces would be turned in to the Philadelphia Mint to be recoined into United States coinage to take advantage of the discrepancy in weight. Moore consulted the Mint records, which indicated that 19,570 dollars were struck in 1804. The 15 known 1804 silver dollars include eight examples of Class I, one of Class II, and six of Class III. But what makes these 1804 dollars so special? The set consisted of a half cent, cent, dime, quarter, half dollar, dollar, quarter eagle, half eagle and eagle. Julian suggests that it could have been done to prevent angering collectors who would not have been able to acquire the 1834-dated coin for their collections; Chief Coiner Adam Eckfeldt, after consulting with Moore, mistakenly determined that 19,570 dollars bearing the date 1804 were struck in that year. There are fifteen known specimens of the 1804 Draped Bust silver dollar … Though dated 1804, none were struck in that year; all were minted in the 1830s or later.  In 1905, he recanted his earlier assertions, stating that "no one now believes that they were coined in 1804. However, those coins, struck from old dies as was common practice at the time, were dated 1803. The collection of 1804 Silver Dollars consists of three classes.  Mint Director Elias Boudinot began encouraging depositors to accept fractional coins, and the production of dollars began to decrease in relation to the smaller coins.  The dollars included the sets bore the Draped Bust design, depicting an allegorical representation of Liberty on the obverse and a heraldic eagle on the reverse. He stated that one should be yellow in color, and the other crimson, and that funds could be drawn from the Treasury for the value of the boxes and coins. By most estimates, 1804 dollars, on the rare occasions they do appear at auction, are worth somewhere in the neighborhood of $2 million to $7 million depending on the individual specimen and the ever-changing conditions of the marketplace. There are a few rare Draped Bust dollars dated 1804. Officially, Roberts was a "special agent", but he was described in a later State Department document as a "Special Envoy". The first US dollar coin with a $1 (USD) face value was the 1804 silver dollar.  This contributed to a shortage of small change in circulation, and as a result, the public became increasingly critical of the Mint. The bulk of the mintage was variously rumored to have been paid to Barbary pirates as ransom, lost at sea en route to China, and melted before leaving the Philadelphia Mint. A complete historical record is provided in Dave Bowers' book The Rare Silver Dollars Dated 1804 … These are very common and are usually worth only the value of the metal used to make the coins.  Several were struck at the Mint in 1858. The 15 known 1804 silver dollars include eight examples of Class I, one of Class II, and six of Class III.  He delivered the next set to King Rama III of Siam the following year, on April 6. Various private mints have produced replicas of the 1804 dollar … Widely noted as the King of American coins, 1804 Draped Bust dollars are the poster child of United States rare coins and represent the holy grail of collecting for many hobbyists. What’s up? U.S. Mint records, which could be wrong, indicate that thousands of silver dollars were struck in 1804.  In 1903, an example sold for $1,800, and the same coin reportedly sold for $4,250 in 1941.  Electrotypes were also created by Mint employees, and one was used as the basis for the pantograph reproductions which appeared in Eckfeldt and DuBois' 1842 A Manual of Gold and Silver Coins of All Nations. [f] As all of the coins in the set were dated 1834 with the exception of the dollar and eagle, it provided the first definitive proof that an 1804 dollar was included in the diplomatic presentation sets.  Additionally, many 1804 dollars were struck in proof finish, a technique which was first employed at the Mint in 1817. The 1804 class I or “original” draped bust silver dollars are widely known as the “King of American Coins”, and with good reason. [b] During his mission, he reached deals both with Said bin Sultan, the Sultan of Muscat and Oman, and the Phra Khlang of Siam (modern Thailand), an important financial minister of that nation. A. There are six 1804 silver dollars in museums and nine in private hands. In this article you will find (1) A complete list of U.S. coins made of silver by denomination. In a November 11, 1834, letter sent to Mint Director Samuel Moore, Secretary of State John Forsyth approved Roberts' suggestion, writing: The President [Andrew Jackson] has directed that a complete set of the coins of the United States be sent to the King of Siam, and another to the Sultan of Muscat. Unlike the original coins, these later restrikes lacked the correct edge lettering, although later examples released from the Mint bore the correct lettering. There are six 1804 silver dollars in museums and nine in private hands.  After the public became aware that Mint officials had permitted restrikes, there was a minor scandal which resulted in a Congressional investigation and the destruction of outdated coinage dies. There are only 15 genuine 1804 dollar coins known to exist. Besides those 1804 dollars produced for inclusion in the diplomatic sets, the Mint struck some examples which were used to trade with collectors for pieces desired for the Mint's coin cabinet. The first dollar coins, known as Flowing Hair dollars, were issued by the Mint beginning in 1794.  However, numismatist S. Hudson Chapman believed that some Class III dollars were struck as late as 1876. . Draped Bust silver dollars are early American coins made from 1795 through 1803. (2) A list of the most valuable silver coins by denomination. Said bin Sultan was the recipient of a coin set containing an 1804 dollar. By 1800, a majority of depositors requested their bullion be struck as silver dollars, which were then utilizing the Draped Bust design. The issue of when dollar coin mintage actually ceased was further confused by a later misreading of Patterson's 1806 annual report to Congress, which erroneously suggested that 321 were coined in 1805. The 1804 dollar or Bowed Liberty Dollar was a dollar coin struck by the Mint of the United States, of which fifteen specimens are currently known to exist. Their high value has caused 1804 dollars to be a frequent target of counterfeiting and other methods of deception  In the decades after the first 1804 dollars were produced, collectors became aware of their existence and desired to obtain them. Early on, collectors assumed that the 1804 dollars were struck in 1804, and their rarity was explained by various theories.  James A. Bolen, a medallist and coin collector who created copies of valuable coins between 1862 and 1869, fabricated an 1804 dollar by altering the last digit in the date of a genuine 1803 example. While there is a degree of mystery behind much of what happened at the United States Mint during its first decades of operations, there is substantial evidence to suggest that all dollars recorded in the 1804 mint report were dated 1803. There is 1 "class II" specimen, struck over a …  Numismatists Lyman H. Low and William T. R. Marvin, writing for the American Journal of Numismatics in 1899, stated that "the journal confidently asserts that there is no dollar dated 1804 which was struck in that year by the U.S. 2020 (P) American Silver Eagles: A New Modern Rarity. Mint. 15 are known. This probably sounds illogical to the uninitiated, but there's really a rather simple explanation: Although they are dated 1804, all 15 of these rare silver dollars actually were minted decades later.  The proof sets meant for Cochin-China and Japan were likely included in the shipment of returned presents. Counterfeits exist of the 1804 Silver Dollar, with some con artists and perpetrators of fraud trying to pass off coins as the real thing. The numbers come from the United States …  A Class I example reached $990,000 at a Superior Galleries auction in 1990, and an example once owned by coin collector Louis Eliasberg became the first 1804 dollar to surpass $1 million at auction, selling for $1,815,000 at a sale conducted by Bowers and Merena, Inc., in 1997.  In 1885, auctioneer W.E. In response to numismatic demand, several examples were surreptitiously produced by Mint officials. , Class III dollars are identical to the Class II dollar, except lettering similar to that on the Class I dollars was applied to the edge of the coins. If any silver dollars were minted during the year 1804, those probably would have been dated 1803.  A list of diplomatic gifts was also proposed for missions to Japan and Cochin-China (today part of Vietnam), which included two additional sets of coins. They can be sold for bullion value at your nearest coin dealer (about $19.27 at current silver spot price).  Numismatic historian Q. David Bowers asserts that the 1804 dollar has attracted more attention than any other coin.  As large silver coins were a preferred method of commerce throughout the world, especially China, a considerable number of the United States dollars requested by silver depositors were exported to satisfy that demand.. A.  Nineteenth-century stage actor John T. Raymond purchased a specimen of the coin, which was later revealed to be a forgery, for $300. Though dated 1804, none were struck in that year; all were minted in the 1830s or later.  In 1875, several were sold by Philadelphia coin dealer John W. The coins produced for the diplomatic mission, those struck surreptitiously without edge lettering and those with lettering are known collectively as "Class I", "Class II" and "Class III" dollars, respectively.  Newman and Bressett assert that they were struck at approximately the same time as the Class II dollars, and that the edges were lettered and the coins concealed by Mint employees until 1869, when one was offered to a coin collector, who rejected it as a restrike. Woodward described the 1804 dollar as "the king of coins", a moniker which it maintains today.  In total, eight specimens of this type are known today.  In 1867, numismatist W. Elliot Woodward acknowledged that 1804 dollars were struck as diplomatic gifts in 1834, but he also believed that others were struck in 1804. US Silver Dollars are popular among coin collectors and investors, and one of the rarest and most popular of them all is the 1804 Silver Draped Bust Dollar.  A Class I specimen brought $77,500 at a 1970 Stack's auction, and during a 1980 rise in coin prices, a Class III example sold for $400,000 by Bowers and Ruddy Galleries. Q. Mint records from 1804 show there were 19,570 silver dollars made that year – that’s more than the 19 listed above. " In 1891, numismatist John A. Nexsen wrote that the Class I 1804 dollars were "without doubt coined in 1804". , During the nineteenth century, Mint employees produced unauthorized copies of medals and coins, sometimes backdated. There exist eight Class I 1804 dollars (“originals”), one Class II 1804 Dollar, and six Class III 1804 dollars (“restrikes”). [c] The moratorium on silver dollar coinage had been lifted in 1831, but none had been coined since those issued in March 1804. Chapman. , Counterfeits and spurious reproductions of the 1804 dollar have been created since numismatists became aware of the coins' high value. 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