The 1837 Classic Head Half Cent was the last year the Classic Head design was used, and that information alone should explain why the coin is so popular. Whether it is the 1837 Half Cent or any of the editions that came beforehand, these pieces are the apple of any collector’s eye. Unfortunately, because the pieces were produced such a long time ago, there are only a few remaining. As such, there has never been a better time than now for you to get your hands on one.
On the coin’s obverse, the center of the face is marked by the raised image of Lady Liberty. Lady Liberty is depicted facing off to the left, and the detail with which she is depicted is impeccable. Resting upon her head is a band, and within that band is an inscription reading “Liberty.” Off to both the left and right sides of the central image there are a total of 13 stars, representative of the 13 original colonies of the United States. On the bottom of the face, there is yet another inscription, this one marking the 1837 year of minting.
The reverse is a good bit more simplistic than the opposite side, and features in the center an inscription indicating the “Half Cent” face value. Completely encircling this face value inscription is an ornate wreath, bound together by a bow. Around the outside of the wreath is one more inscription, this one reading “United States of America.” Finally, we would be remiss not to mention the very outer edges of both sides of the coin. These edges are marked by raised notches that give the coin some added texture.
For collectors, not just any Classic Head Half Cent will do. Because these coins are so old and so popular, they are also frequently counterfeited. Collectors protect themselves from counterfeited coins by only purchasing those that have been graded and certified as being authentic. The following will highlight the different coin grades and explain what, exactly, differentiates the grades.
Uncirculated: Though they are nearly impossible to find, Uncirculated Classic Head Half Cents are in nearly perfect condition. The reason for this is due to the fact that these coins never made it out onto the open market. Naturally, these Half Cents are highly sought after.
Extremely Fine: If a coin is graded as being Extremely Fine, this means that the coin will be in perfect condition save for a few minor imperfections. Things like a small scratch or chip will be identified during the grading process, and are enough to downgrade the coin to Extremely Fine.
Fine: Fine is the grade given to coins that have been circulated quite a bit, but are not overly damaged. These coins will feature some light scratching and some smoothing on the surfaces, but all of the raised imagery and lettering should still be intact.
Good: Good is the grade given to coins that have been both heavily circulated and heavily damaged. These pieces will feature damage so severe that it sometimes results in the complete wearing away of surface imagery and lettering.
When it comes to determining the price of an 1837 Classic Head, this is something that can most easily be determined by looking at the grade/condition. It is almost always true that the more well-preserved a coin is, the more expensive it is going to be. There are other factors that play into the price, but condition is arguably the most critical. Below, you will find a chart aimed at giving you a better idea of what you might be asked to pay for a graded 1837 Classic Head Half Cent.
|1837 Classic Head||$40||$70||$200||$375||Source: Red Book|