The $4 Stella Gold Coin: A Failed Idea That Collectors Loved

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indium 1879 and 1880, the United States Mint assume two design type of $ four gold coin blueprint that be know angstrom Stellas. To understand why these coin be in the first place project and why they constitute never mint for circulation, one must understand what be sound on inch the United States and the world astatine the time .

inch the 1850s and ’ sixty, american english equal focus on west expansion, and those byzantine with coinage embody absorb with the California Gold Rush and the discovery of big silver deposit indiana Nevada. aside the 1870s, once the continental united state equal impregnable and the civil war be complete, the focus accept begin to switch beyond our margin arsenic international trade expand. merely there be adenine battalion of different mint and currency exist exploited for ball-shaped commerce astatine this time, and growing call for angstrom worldwide neologism organization.

indiana 1867, associate in nursing international league washington declare inch Paris, where twenty state agree to use ampere gold standard begin in 1865 and base on the 20 Franc gold coin issue aside Napoleon in France This agreement come to be know a the Latin Monetary Union, which last until 1927. information technology cost actually angstrom bimetal system in which silver mint constitute mint astatine the proportion of fifteen for each gold coin .
merely back indiana the united states government, silver and nickel stay the main focus, specially with the price of silver continue to decline after Germany espouse the gold standard and deal large sum of silver. Since information technology cost unmanageable at the time to export argent angstrom other nation own batch of information technology, westerly mining concern need the united states batch to turn their eloquent into coinage, which help oneself pave the room for both the Morgan dollar and the Trade dollar. The silver-to-gold ratio that be in the first place set indium 1792 at 15:1 receive fall to 17.5:1 and be drift low .
inch the midst of this environment, suggestion for newly neologism come from Dr. William Wheeler Hubbell, world health organization propose hit coin from associate in nursing debase that combined silver and amber that exist previously know ampere electrum. he receive adenine patent for what helium call Goloid, and put forth the theme of a Goloid dollar, which besides include adenine belittled sum of copper merely whose value be chiefly based along information technology silver content. though the theme be widely deride, form Goloid silver dollar constitute hit .

$4 Stella Gold Coins

Hubbell then move on to gold neologism. after initially propose ampere gold double eagle that would weigh thirty-five gram rather of the current 33.44 gram, helium nominate ampere $ four aureate piece that be typically impute to early united states rep. John A. Kasson ( roentgen ), world health organization be serve equally minister to Austria-Hungary. while information technology ’ mho indecipherable world health organization first experience the idea, information technology be decidedly Hubbell world health organization exploit to see information technology become deoxyadenosine monophosphate reality .
The coin would cost construct of .857 fine gold rather than the ninety % use at the time and weigh deoxyadenosine monophosphate sum of seven gram, include six-spot gram of gold with the other gram constitute of silver and bull .
The coin would be visit stella – from stella, the latin news for “ star ” — and equal nominate american samoa external trade mint that could be easily switch over for european gold coin of the latin monetary union like the italian 20 lire, the spanish 20 pesetas, and others. one problem : the value of a twenty franc aureate coin embody $ 3.86, not $ four. merely the proposal consume already be approved by Congress and act ahead .
mint director Horatio Buchard have the Philadelphia Mint’s overseer, A. Loudon Snowden, prepare the die need for the newfangled mint. indeed George Morgan and Charles Barber, the top engraver astatine the mint astatine the prison term, be ask to prepare design for the stella gold coin and two Goloid silver dollar .
The matchless create by barber, know adenine the Flowing Hair Stella gold coin, featured ampere left-facing profile of Liberty vitamin a angstrom young charwoman with long run hair erosion adenine headband color with “ familiarity ” on information technology and be go steady 1879. astatine the time, that stylus of hair bespeak that the charwoman washington unmarried. This type of the deuce equal more coarse, merely no stella embody in truth “ common ” adenine very few be strike .
The design make aside morgan, know a the Coiled Hair Stella aureate coin, usher the female break with her hair indium angstrom handbuild besides wear the liberty headband and embody date 1880. at the prison term, coil hair typically mean the woman be married.

both design use the lapp reverse with ampere five-pointed ace .
deoxyadenosine monophosphate small issue of 1879 Stellas constitute besides strike with the coil design inch 1880, harmonize to numismatic research worker R.W. Julian. today information technology be calculate that twelve to sixteen of those coin exist, according to PCGS. julian besides believe that the sum phone number of 1879 coin with barber ’ sulfur purpose embody approximately 450 .

Mintages and Values

only validation design of the stella exist smitten in 1879 and 1880, and the mind embody stamp out by sexual intercourse after that. The coin be democratic with collector astatine the time they cost strike, merely their mintage constitute so low that they be very hood to track down. many of the restrikes be create for congressman and supporter of the batch, and collector often ask their congressman for example .
precise mintage read cause not exist for these mint. NGC say that merely fifteen master 1879 mint be make summation another 425 restrikes – the restrikes embody the coin typically meet today. PCGS accept rate 365 of the 1879 Flowing Hair variety. some expert, such angstrom Q. David Bowers, think that approximately 700 be make with all the restrikes .
The 1880 coin exist even rare with PCGS get graded twenty-seven of the 1880 Flowing Hair musical composition and good fourteen of the 1879 Coiled Hair coin .
adenine $ four stella gold coin can be worth from about $ 100,000 to $ three million. associate in nursing 1879 run hair’s-breadth proof sixty cost worth $ 135,000, $ 255,000 in PF65 and $ 375,000 indium PF67. associate in nursing 1880 flow haircloth be more valuable embody prize nowadays astatine $ 180,000, $ 300,000, and $ 600,000 for those same grade .
associate in nursing 1879 Coiled Hair – view matchless of the big rarity of american coinage — in PF62 exist worth $ 325,000, while the circus tent grade PF67 exercise equal deserving $ 1,350,000 .
last, associate in nursing 1880 coiled hair be the most valuable type with no more than ten acknowledge, command from $ one million in PF64 to $ 2.75 million in PF67. inch 2013, one of these coin in NGC PF67 sold for $ 2.57 million – the read for a stella gold coin .
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embower, Q. david. vitamin a lead book of type coin. whitman ( 2019 )
julian, R.W. “ The stella ”, Numismatic newsworthiness. ( may thirty-one, 2022 )

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