In 1850, American writers Herman Melville and Nathaniel Hawthorne met for the first time at a mutual friend’s picnic in Massachusetts. The men kindled a relationship that day that would push each other to write their most famous works. Living in the same town for the next six years, Melville and Hawthorne accumulatively wrote “The Scarlet Letter”, “The House of the Seven Gables”, “Moby-Dick”, “The Blithedale Romance”, and “Pierre”. This 1850 dime recalls the beginning of a friendship that led to some of the most prominent works of American literature.
The Stars Obverse Seated Dime spans two noncontiguous time periods: 1838-1852 and 1856-1859. Those proofs struck during the first period are rarer, as they were produced in very limited numbers. The proof Dimes from the 1856-1859, however, are still scarce-to-rare in their own right. These later issues either have limited mintages, or saw limited distribution in the early days of the Mint's attempt to gain widespread collector acceptance for its proof coinage program.