1853 OC-1
Chin Whiskers - Top-30 Variety

Die Pair 1 - A
Date Grid C / 3-3.5 / VS down
Obverse Die States a, b, c, d
Estimated Rarity R2
1, 3 Vertical H, H
Reverse Die States a, b

   This is the first and only use of Obverse 1 and the first and only use of Reverse A.
Reverse A has not been found in any other years.

Obverse P1

The photo below shows the Obverse 1 attribution grid. The second photo shows the chin whiskers that give this variety its name.

1853 Obverse 1 attribution grid

1853 Obverse 1 chin whiskers

This is the only business strike obverse die. Its unique date position, very high and far left, makes it easy to attribute.

Obverse P1 Die States
  1. Perfect die.
  2. Light clashing, most notable in the field under Miss Liberty's right arm.
  3. A light die crack joins the outer tips of stars 1-7.
  4. Tiny rim cuds below 53.
No later die states have been observed.

Reverse A

1853 Reverse A is easy to identify. The reverse shield recesses exhibit numerous heavy die polish lines slanting up to the right. In addition there are many extensions of the vertical shield lines into the horizontal lines and across the lower shield border. The lowest horizontal line extends far into the feathers of the left wing. These features are shown in the following photo.

1853 Reverse A die markers

Reverse A Die States
  1. Perfect die.
  2. Very faint clash marks.
No later die states have been observed. The die clashing which identifies state b is extremely light. We know it's there because the clashing is clear on the obverse, but it's almost impossible to see without a high-grade coin and high magnification.

Photo credits:

Obverse 1 and Reverse A:   1853 NGC AU55, from the Osburn-Cushing reference collection.

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