I have an old ad that offers a pair of proof 1858 Flying Eagle cents – one with a large eagle and the other with a small eagle. I can’t find a listing for the small one. Is it a legitimate issue?
Legitimate, but not a coin. The small eagle design appeared only on patterns, so the ad really offered a proof and a pattern.
Who was the first American woman to appear on a foreign coin? Was it Princess Grace of Monaco?
Princess Grace appeared on the Monaco 1966 silver 10 franc and gold 200 franc coins. However, the first American woman honored on a foreign coin was Henrietta Szold, named but not pictured on an Israeli 1960 1 lira.
Have any of the private mints struck clad coins?
Certainly. One example would be the Panama proof coins struck by the Franklin Mint to match the circulation strikes that are on clad planchets identical to the U.S. coins. One note, novices frequently confuse the medals struck by the Franklin Mint with the “real” coins they have also struck. While none of the medals are listed, all of the coins struck by the Franklin Mint for foreign countries are listed in the Standard Catalog of World Coins.
Is there a coin that has George Washington and England’s George III on opposite sides?
You may be thinking of the silver 20 and gold 50 crown 1976 commemorative coins of Turks and Caicos, but George is facing George on the same side of the coin (reverse), while Queen Elizabeth II referees from the obverse.
Was there ever a time when a dollar coin actually circulated freely in the U.S.?
Never on a national basis. However, there are several periods when it did circulate in the West more or less regularly, and they did well in the South after the Civil War. The principal use for the silver dollar over the years was for inter-bank business and as a backing for the Silver Certificates.
Didn’t the Coinage Act of 1873 prohibit pattern coins?
It did, but it was ignored by the Mint until 1887 when Philadelphia Mint Supt. Fox refused an order from Mint Director James P. Kimball for a complete set of copper patterns. Kimball apparently had reversed his stand of 1874 in which he tried to declare the proof issues to be patterns.
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