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1803 Draped Bust Dollar

Small 3 - Wide Date


Variety BB-254, B-4 - PCGS MS63

  Obverse: Variety BB-254, B-4 - PCGS MS63

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Reverse: Variety BB-254, B-4 - PCGS MS63

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Production of Draped Bust dollars dated 1803 continued the trend of reduced mintages, and ultimately used 6 different obverse dies and only 3 different reverse dies.  These combined to create 6 different individual die varieties.  The Redbook categorizes these based on the appearance of the numeral "3" in the date - being either a "Small 3" lacking an upper serif and displaying a smaller lower loop, or a "Large 3" featuring a prominent upper serif and a distinctly larger lower loop.

Although believed struck in five separate varieties, the Small 3 sub-type is considerably scarcer overall than the Large 3 sub-type.  The typical coin demonstrates noticeable weakness of strike, especially at the centers -- leaving Liberty's hair detail missing, even on high grade specimens.  All of which frustrates those collectors seeking sharply struck specimens.

The Cardinal Collection specimen traces its provenance to the Eliasberg Collection.  Once of the very finest known of ALL 1803 Small 3 dollars, this coin, at MS63, is the second finest known of the BB-254 variety. Relatively sharply struck throughout, the coin proudly displays its Eliasberg character with beautiful peripheral album toning and wonderfully impressive cartwheel luster.


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