ADDITIONAL PRODUCT SPECIFICATIONS
- Product ID: 7165937
- Year: 1846
- Grade Service: ANACS AU55
- Denomination: $1.00
- Metal Content: 0.7734 troy oz
- Minted: New Orleans Mint
- Purity: .900
- Thickness: 3.1 mm
- Diameter: 38.1 mm
- Liberty Seated (1840-1873) / No Motto (1840-1865) / With Motto IN GOD WE TRUST (1866-1873)
VG-8 Very Good- Any three letters of LIBERTY at least two-thirds complete.
F-12 Fine- All seven letters of LIBERTY visible, though weak.
VF-20 Very Fine- LIBERTY strong, but slight wear visible on its ribbon.
EF-40 Extra Fine- Horizontal lines of shield complete. Eagle’s eye plain.
AU-50- About Uncirculated- Traces of light wear on only the high points of the design. Half of the mint luster present.
MS-60 Uncirculated- No trace of wear. Light marks or blemishes.
PF-60 Proof- Several contact marks, hairlines, or light rubs possible on surface. Luster possibly dull and eye appeal lacking.
PF-63 Choice Proof- Reflective surfaces with few blemishes in secondary focal places. No major flaws.
New Orleans issue: After construction commencing in 1835 and the setting up of equipment in 1837, the New Orleans Mint opened for business in 1838. However, it struck no silver dollars until 1846. This was the first of only four dates of Liberty Seated dollars from this mint: 1846-O, 1850-O, 1859-O, and 1860-O.
Although some 1846-O dollars may have been exported, and most likely many were melted, many also circulated within the confines of the United States, probably in the Mississippi Valley.
The Assay Commission found that silver coins (of all denominations, taken as a class) from the New Orleans Mint produced in 1846 assayed a remarkably high. 9011 fine, which was above the legal standard (but still within the legal tolerance of .987 to .903); This was far out of the range of normal variation from the .900 standard, as reflected in Assay Commission reports.
Circulated grades: The 1846-O has always been relatively easy to find in circulated grades below Extremely Fine (but EF or better pieces are quite rare). I suspect that this issue circulated widely and saw use in the channels of commerce up and down the Mississippi River Valley, especially riverboats (which numbered in the hundreds) and casinos. Relatively few must have been melted or exported. As the first branch mint silver dollar and as an issue of the New Orleans Mint, the 1846-O has always occupied a place of affection in collectors’ hearts.
Mint State grades: In Mint State the 1846-O is very rare; just how rare is not known with certainty. Some of the specimens seen by me have been so deeply toned that it is impossible for anyone (including a certification service) to determine, for example, whether they are AU-58 or Mint State. Notwithstanding this, a top grade 1846-O is an object of desirability. In MS-63 or better grade it is a prime rarity.
Business strikes: Breen-5437:
1. Obverse: Normal. Reverse: With heavy O mintmark.
2. Obverse: Normal. Reverse: With “normal” O mintmark.
3. Obverse: Normal. Reverse: With very weak and thin O mintmark.