1853-O SEATED HALF DOLLAR ARROWS & RAYS SSR SHIPWRECK
NGC SHIPWRECK EFFECT1853-O Seated Liberty Half Dollar - SS Republic Ship Treasure NGC Shipwreck Effect (C) UNCSS SHIPWRECK TREASURE COIN - 1853-O Seated Liberty Half Dollar recovered from the SS Republic Civil War Shipwreck, Graded NGC Shipwreck Effect (C) UNC. This 1853-O Seated Liberty Half Dollar with Arrows and Rays was struck at the historic New Orleans Mint and is a popular one year issue. The Seated Liberty Half Dollars are a fascinating series, designed by the U.S. Mint's Chief Engraver, Christian Gobrecht. This 1853-O issue with Arrows at date and Rays of glory around the eagle on the reverse was only minted for one year to correct an imbalance in the silver ratio.
The production of gold from California flooded the markets, enough to distort the gold/silver ratio. Silver prices increased, which exceeded the coin's face value. The result was that silver coins were either hoarded or exported and melted... Silver coins virtually disappeared from circulation by 1853. To correct this imbalance, the Mint Act of 1853 reduced the weight of the half dollar by 7% because of rising silver prices, and though the amount of weight change seemed insignificant, the reduction was necessary to keep half dollars in circulation.
To make the public aware of this significant change, a new design was issued with arrows at the date and rays around the eagle in 1853. Today, this short-lived ''Arrows and Rays'' type is quite popular among numismatists today and is considered a treasure both for variety specialists and type collectors alike.
This magnificent 1853 Silver Seated Liberty Half Dollar was minted at the historic New Orleans Mint over 165 years ago, before the Civil War. 12 years later, it became part of the much-needed cargo headed South for New Orleans after the Civil War, aboard the SS Republic, a side-wheel steamer that was lost in a hurricane off the coast of Georgia, October 25th, 1865.
138 years later, the shipwreck was discovered by Odyssey Marine Exploration in 2003, resting at bottom of the Atlantic Ocean in 1,700 feet of water. Certified and graded ''Shipwreck Effect'' (C) UNC by NGC (Numismatic Guarantee Corporation), which is the unique result of more than a century of time submerged, and the fascinating chemical reaction of the oceans salt water on the silver in the coins. This shipwreck effect enhances the intricate details of this rare and beautiful historic artifact with a beautiful patina.