Conservation Showcase: 1858 1C J-212

Posted on 7/5/2011

A recent example from our conservation laboratory.

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At first glance, this coin may appear to be a standard copper nickel cent of 1860-1864. The date of 1858, however, predates the introduction of the James Longacre’s Indian Liberty design and the reverse features a small shield at the opening of the wreath. This is a pattern coin issued prior to the introduction of a new design as a way to test the new motif.

Holders designed to protect a coin in the short term can do harm if the coin is left in them for the long term. A pale green haze formed evenly on the surface of this pattern 1 Cent coin with the storage holder likely the culprit. The haze was carefully removed revealing original surfaces relatively unharmed by the presence of the green residue. This coin was able to grade with NGC numerically following the conservation work.

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