1856 LIBERTY SEATED 10C, SMALL DATE, DRAPERY PR66 Cameo
GEM WHITE CAMEO. ESTIMATED 40-50 STRUCK. TIED FOR HIGHEST.
NGC Graded Higher:
1856 marks the end to the second Committee of Vigilance’s control of San Francisco. In response to corruption in the government preventing policing of the city’s crime, the Committee of Vigilance was formed to punish offenders themselves. This second incarnation of the group lasted just four months but was able to force several prominent members of the municipal government to resign. This 1856 dime recalls the reign of the second Committee of Vigilance.
Beginning in 1853, the United States Mint lowered the weight of the Dime from 2.67 grams to 2.49 grams. This was done to discourage the hoarding and melting of silver coins that became popular (and profitable) during the California Gold Rush era. Due to the vast majority of gold being mined on the U.S. West Coast, the value of silver reckoned in gold increased on the world market to the point where old-tenor Dimes became worth more as bullion than as circulating coinage. In order to denote this weight reduction, the Mint placed arrows at both sides of the date beginning after February 21, 1853 and continuing through 1855. Since they were struck during the era before the Mint began widespread marketing of proof coins, specimen strikings of the 1853-1855 Arrows Dime were produced in very limited quantities. All three dates of this short-lived type and rare in proof format, and survivors enjoy strong demand among both advanced type collectors and numismatic investors.