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Slightly glossy medium brown and light chocolate. There is damage on the upper right obverse, mostly of a shallow blob of metal in the field before the face and myriad scratches in that area that appear to have been applied in a crude, unfocused attempt to remove the blob. There is a void on the rim over the first T in STATES plus additional light contact marks on both sides, none notable. The date is easily readable although the 5 is weakened a bit by a nick, and the legends are mostly strong.
This half cent was struck over a cut-down spoiled 1795 large cent of the Sheldon-76 or Sheldon-77 die variety. The 5 and bottom edge of the bust of the large cent is clearly visible under OF, and the hair waves from the cent show clearly above the wreath bow of the half cent reverse. The tip of a stray bust also shows at CA in AMERICA. This piece weighs 91.8 grains, which is heavier than the 84.0-grain standard for plain edge half cents but relatively low for half cents struck on cut-down cent planchets. That suggests this piece was struck on a thin planchet 1795 cent rather than a thicker lettered-edge cent of that same year.
While 1795 C-6 half cents are often found struck on planchets cut out of Talbot Allum & Lee Cents, pieces struck on spoiled large cents are much rarer, and pieces with identifiable large cent undertype are extremely rare.
Year – 1795
Variety – C-6b
Rarity – 6
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