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1795 Draped Bust Dollar

Centered Bust


Variety BB-52, B-15 - PCGS MS65

  Obverse: Variety BB-52, B-15 - PCGS MS65

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Reverse: Variety BB-52, B-15 - PCGS MS65

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Once the Flowing Hair type dollars had entered into circulation, the general public began to express an opinion that the portrait of Liberty depicted her as being "too unkempt" in appearance, and that the portrait should show Liberty as more refined, in keeping with polite society of the time.  With the Draped Bust/Small Eagle type, Mint engravers answered the public with a completely re-designed image of Lady Liberty for the obverse, as well as a re-designed eagle and revised wreath for the reverse.

1795 dollars of the Draped Bust type were struck from two distinctive sets of dies.  The first presented Liberty's portrait noticeably positioned off-center and to the left.  The second variety placed her portrait directly in the center of the obverse, as it would remain throughout the remainder of early dollar production into 1804.  While both varieties appear with reasonable frequency, the "off-center" variety is somewhat more available than the "centered bust" variety, especially in higher grades.

The pictured specimen is the superb Flannagan MS-65 specimen of the BB-52 Centered Bust type.  This specimen is incredibly sharply struck throughout, with the obverse stars fully brought up to sharp points; Liberty's delicately styled hair shows the finest of details with each strand fully raised, rounded, and split from each other; and every feather stands out individually on the eagle's breast.  Toned in shades of gold and russet with highlights of vivid blue, the surfaces blast through with the amazing luster of a magnificent gem.  The finest Centered Bust specimen seen by PCGS, it is exceeded only by a single MS-66 graded by NGC.


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