1871

Two 5 cent pieces patterns were produced using a similar obverse and a simple wreath reverse including J1054/P1189



On the other the 5 is represented with a backwards Roman numeral V.

The "Standard Silver" testing was continued using the late James B. Longacre's seated liberty design used by William Barber the previous year. These were made in 4 varieties, 2 obverses and 2 reverses for every denomination from half dime to dollar as shown below. This must have been a blow to Barber.

Starless Obverse with Standard Reverse J1061/P1196



Starless Obverse with Regular Reverse J1094/P1230



Starred Obverse with Standard Reverse J1080/P1216



Starred Obverse with Regular Reverse J1114/P1250



On the dollar, the starless obverse was muled with a no-motto reverse not used since 1865 probably deliberately for sale to a collector. J1132A/P1269



The mint claimed a few years earlier, that all old dies were destroyed. As we can see, and will continue to see, this was not true.

This year marks the beginning of the design for what was to become the Trade Dollar. America's silver dollar was light when compared to the Mexican peso which was the preferred currency for trade with the Orient. Because of this, the following pattern, 8 grains heavier than the regular silver dollar was produced. J1155/P1299



Many other designs would be made over the coming years.

Complete off-metal die trial sets from the cent to the double eagle in copper, aluminum and nickel were deliberately struck for sale to collectors.

Photos used courtesy of Heritage, Teletrade and Northeast Numismatics.

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