Click to enlargeJ1731/P1942

The regular dies trial piece in copper. As with most die trials made from the 1860s onward this piece was struck as part of the unique copper set of 1884 silver and gold coins complete from the quarter to the double eagle. It was presented to A.M. Smith, who authored the Mints visitor's guides.

The illustrated example is believed to be unique and has the following pedigree:

Bolender's 2/36 lot 26, Bolender 2/52 lot 267, Farouk lot 2021, Rarcoa 4/72 lot 1188, Rogers M. Fred, Bowers and Merena 11/95, Heritage 1/01, southern collection, Simpson collection.

There is also an 1884-O copper die trial J1731A/P1942A which was recently discovered. It is the only genuine New Orleans mint die trial known in any denomination.

Additional information was supplied in the February 22, 1993 and March 1, 1993 editions of Coin World and also in a December issue of the Numismatist.

Photo courtesy of Heritage.