Braided Hair Cent (1839-1857)

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Braided Hair Cent (1839-1857) a.jpg

The Braided Hair large cent is similar in design to the half cent of the same style and features a compact head of Miss Liberty, her hair strands sharply defined and tied in the back in a bun secured by two beaded cords. A diadem or coronet bears the inscription LIBERTY. Thirteen stars surround, and the date is below.

The reverse shows a continuous wreath tied with a ribbon at the bottom, ONE CENT within, with UNITED STATES OF AMERICA around the border. The details on the reverse are slightly different from that used earlier, but the style is the same.

Although there are no rare dates from 1839 through 1857, several varieties are scarce, as is the last date of regular issue, 1857. By that time the large cent was viewed as being cumbersome for use in everyday transactions, and the Mint desired to replace it with a smaller and more easily handled coin (the result being the Flying Eagle cent subsequently introduced).

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