NCS Certifies Newly Discovered Specimen of the Rare Starred Reverse Cent

Posted on 9/1/2008

These stars have captured the imaginations of coin collectors since 1876.

1794 Starred Reverse Cent
Starred Reverse Cent Starred Reverse Cent
Click to enlarge Click to enlarge
Starred Reverse Cent
Reverse detail showing
stars inset into denticles

Among the most famous and popular of early federal coins is the 1794 cent variety featuring a circle of 94 tiny stars around its reverse border. Though partially hidden by the denticles which overlap them, these stars have captured the imaginations of coin collectors since this variety was discovered in 1876 by legendary dealer Henry Chapman. Since that time about 40 examples have come to light, the finest of these overall being the one plated in William C. Noyes? book United States Large Cents 1793-1814. It is more worn than the newly discovered coin, but its surfaces are problem-free.

The previously unknown specimen illustrated here is by far sharper than the Noyes plate coin, having full details and essentially no wear but with corroded surfaces. The latter feature disqualifies it for NGC certification, but NCS was pleased to assign it a details grade of AU and provide a VarietyPlus® attribution of S-48 from the Sheldon cataloging system.

The NCS-certified cent reportedly was retrieved from a coin album and was unknown to the large cent collecting fraternity. The few individuals outside of NGC/NCS who have seen the coin or photos of it are in agreement that this is the sharpest example known of this rare and fabled variety. Its submitter has chosen to remain anonymous at this time, but he is delighted with the service he received from NCS and its representatives.


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