General Comments

1846-O is a semi-key date in the Liberty Seated dollar series. With a mintage ranking of 27th out of 47 the collector would expect that it would be easy to locate, but that’s only partially true. 1846-O dollars are scarce, probably in part due to their demand as the first New Orleans product in the series. Nice problem-free examples can be located, but patient searching is required. Lower grade examples, VF or less, are more available than many other dates. Apparently coins in the New Orleans area circulated more than their Philadelphia counterparts. Mint state examples are very rare.

The finest known example is a single MS65 coin graded by NGC. The highest graded PCGS coin is MS64+. Three others have received a MS64 grade from PCGS. NGC has graded none at that level. Only eleven coins have been graded MS63 by the two services. A total of 50 coins have been graded at all levels of mint state. A few of those examples are surely re-submissions. Choice examples are truly rare, virtually unobtainable. In MS63 or better this is one of the toughest dates in the entire series. Population statistics are as of January, 2019.

Mintage 59,000
Proof mintage None
Mintage ranking 27th
Finest known MS65
Known obverse dies 1
Known reverse dies 1
Known die marriages 1
Most common die marriage OC-1 / R2
Rarest business strike die marriage OC-1 / R2
1846-O coins usually exhibit some level of strike weakness. At best the star centrals show slight weakness. At worst many specimens we’ve examined show almost total flatness on the right side stars. Reverse strikes are usually a little stronger, with only very slight weakness on the upper edge of the eagle’s left wing. High-grade business strikes are usually frosty to slightly prooflike. Fully prooflike examples are rare.

1846-O Die Marriages

A single die pair was used to strike all currently known 1846-O examples.

Die Marriage


Obverse Die

Reverse Die

Estimated Survivors

OC-1 R2 1 A 1250

In late states both the obverse and reverse dies cracked. The reverse die cracks appeared much earlier than those on the obverse. Early die states with a perfect reverse die are very rare. In its final state the dies rotated approximately 45 degrees. Examples of this die rotation are rare, but can be located with patient searching. We’ve included this rotated die variety as one of our Top-30 varieties.

1846-O Emission Sequence

With only a single business strike die marriage the emission sequence isn't terribly interesting.

Emission Order
Die Marriage
1 OC-1

1846-O Quick Finder Chart

With only a single die marriage known the quick-finder keys should be used to verify that examples are genuine.

Die Marriage

Obv Die

Rev Die

Right Base of 1

Keys to Identification

OC-1 1 A JR of C Obverse:   High date. RB of 1 JR of C. Die lines around ribbon end below finger.
Reverse:   Mintmark slightly high and left of centered.

Photo credits:

Obverse reverse full photos:   1846-O PCGS MS64 CAC, from the Heritage archives.

Copyright © 2015-2021, by Dick Osburn and Brian Cushing, All rights reserved.