The 1795 Flowing Hair dollar is one of the earliest and scarcest of United States silver coins, and it’s an especially tough piece in top condition. Yet the finest of the rare Two Leaves variety was recently sold at auction for more than a half-million dollars.
A 1795 Flowing Hair, Two Leaves (BB-14, B-4) dollar graded by Professional Coin Grading Service as MS65 took $576,000 on December 17, 2020 at the landmark Larry H. Miller Collection Part Two sale held by Stack’s Bowers Galleries. The condition-census, Gem Uncirculated coin housed in a vintage PCGS Old Green Holder is noted for its fantastic strike quality and original surfaces. The unusually superior condition of this specimen suggests it may have been intentionally preserved soon after it was struck.
Sharp details are found throughout both the obverse and reverse, and soft mint luster abounds on the surfaces. Only minor blemishes are apparent, and even these aren’t immediately noticeable — the eyes are rather drawn to gorgeous gold, champagne, and olive hues around the peripheries.
The 1795 Flowing Hair dollar is among the design portfolio of United States Mint engraver Robert Scot, who executed some of the earliest of designs seen on U.S. coinage. As with all early United States coinage, the working dies for the Flowing Hair dollar were handcrafted, and this led to numerous varieties. Among these is the Two Leaves variety, representing one of 19 working die pairings known for the date. Most specimens of the Two Leaves variety are found in the mid-circulated grades, making this outstanding Mint State example a true treasure.
*Images are courtesy of Stack’s Bowers Galleries.