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Meaning of liberty seated silver dollar?


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Answered 2010-10-01 18:17:19

The term "Seated Liberty Dollar" refers to silver dollars produced in the United States between 1840 and 1873. The coins have and image on the obverse (front) of a woman representing Liberty seated, facing left (although with her body facing right), with a shield in front of her.

Note that "Gobrecht Dollar", dated either 1836 or 1839, has a very similar obverse but a different eagle on the revese (back) - it is generally considered to be a pattern coin.

Note that the Trade Dollar, produced between 1873 and 1878 (with proofs made until 1885) for trade in the Far East, also has a seated depiction of Liberty, but the image of the woman is different (she is, amongst other things, holding a branch in front of her), and the reverse has the words "TRADE DOLLAR".

Finally, note that the Liberty Seated device also appeared on the half dime, dime, quarter and half dollar during much of the Liberty Seated Silver Dollar's time of circulation.

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Aside from the minor differences in design, the greatest difference between the US Trade Dollar and the Seated Liberty Dollar is the weight. The Liberty Seated Dollar weighs 26.73 grams while the US Trade Dollar weighs 27.22 grams. Both contained 90% silver and 10% copper altthough the Trade Dollar had slightly more silver in it. The Trade Dollar was issued primarily for circulation in the Orient while the Seated Liberty Dollar was issued for circulation in the USA.


One of the easiest and most accurate ways to determine the authenticity is to weigh it. A genuine Seated Liberty silver dollar should weigh 26.73 grams.


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The coin is one of the Seated Liberty dollars that were made from 1840 to 1873.


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A silver dollar can feasibly mean at least three different coins. From 1840-1873 the Seated Liberty dollar was minted. It depicts a seated woman (an idealized Lady Liberty). From 1878-1921 the Morgan silver dollar was minted. It features again Lady Liberty, modeled after a school teacher named Anna Williams. From 1921-1935 the Peace silver dollar was minted. It was designed by Anthony de Francisci to represent Lady Liberty modeled by his wife Teresa. Other commemorative silver dollars have been minted since, but after the 1930's and 40's real silver dollars came out of circulation. These three are probably what you are asking about.


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