The 1871 Liberty Head $2.50 Gold Coins were struck in only two mints, Philadelphia and San Francisco. The San Francisco mint struck 22,000 coins while Philadelphia numbers were just over 5,000. This may not come as much of a surprise to those who remember that the Gold Rush centered much of the nation’s gold mining activity in the vicinity of the City by the Bay. By this time, the bulk of the U.S. gold coinage was circulating in the West.
The Liberty Head $2.50 Gold Coin began in 1840 and circulated for nearly 70 years achieving unsurpassed longevity in U.S. history. To put this into perspective, the coin was in circulation from the era of westward expansion to the dawn of World War.
For Liberty Head $2.50 Gold Coins that have been around for over 150 years, you have to take the coin’s condition into consideration. While these gold coins may have collectible value even in poor condition, collectors will tend to focus on coins that remain pristine, and look new in appearance. Finding coins in such good condition can be time consuming, however, as so much time has passed since these coins were first minted.
When you are inspecting a coin, what you are actually doing is trying to assess how that coin might be graded. While only a professionally recognized coin grading service can assign a coin a grade, you can get a good idea of what grade your coin may be assigned by using the guidelines below.
Uncirculated: For coin collectors, coins in uncirculated condition represent the cream of the crop. These coins, due to their type, were never exposed to circulation and thus have not been subjected to countless exchanges and handling. In fact, looking at these coins will make you think they were just struck, and are fresh off the mint’s presses.
Extremely Fine: Coins that are said to be in extremely fine condition will have some very minor imperfections, however, they may still be coveted by coin collectors. To receive this grade, the coin must appear to be in near-perfect condition, and any imperfections may only be seen under close visual observation.
Fine: Coins in fine condition are typically coins that have been widely circulated and exchanged for some time. While images and details on the coin’s surfaces remain intact, the coin may have plenty of surface scratches or discoloration.
Good: Most of the Liberty Head $2.50 Gold Coins that are bought and sold today are classified as good. Due to heavy use over the years, these coins will likely have significant scratches, dents or discoloration. A coin collector may often leave these coins alone, favoring coins that are in superior physical condition.
To get an accurate estimate of a 1871 Liberty Head $2.50 Gold Coin value, the first key is to identify the type of coin it is. In 1871, there were two types of Liberty Head $2.50 Gold Coins minted. In addition to identifying the coin type, you must make a careful assessment of the coin’s condition. Collectors care a great deal about condition, and coins in top condition often sell for far more than coins in only good condition. The chart below will help you determine what you might expect to pay for a 1871 Liberty Head $2.50 Gold Coin based on its type and grade.
Liberty Head $2.5 Gold Coin
|1871 Liberty Head $2.5 Gold Coin||N/A||N/A||$400||$550|
|1871 Liberty Head $2.5 Gold Coin (S)||N/A||N/A||$400||$600||Source: Red Book|