The late nineteenth century's Type 3 gold dollar coin was obviously a result of buying into the philosophy that, if at second you don't succeed, try yet again. It is the most improved and refined version of the single-dollar gold coin that was issued for the first time in 1849. The Type 1, as that coin is commonly called now, had one particularly glaring problem for many U.S. citizens: it was simply too small. Its diameter was 12.7 millimeters, making it U.S. history's shortest-girth coin. The coin could be too easily lost; this was no small problem considering that, during this piece's period of mintage, a dollar was equivalent to a day's pay for many U.S. residents.
The U.S. Mint had attempted to address that size in 1854 when it made the coin broader in diameter but also thinner, allowing it to keep the same weight. However, the obverse design's relief was too high; thus, the visual features wore away too quickly on coins that entered circulation. That gold dollar coin variant, the Type 2, gave way to the Type 3 in 1856. Its fresh design had been revised rather than significantly revamped; as such, Liberty is shown wearing the same kind of feathered headdress as she sports on the Type 2's obverse.
There has been confusion over precisely what type of headdress this is. It has traditionally been deemed that of a Native American princess; however, it is not visually akin to any headwear that any Indian tribeswoman has worn. Art scholar Cornelius Vermeule made a similar observation, though he conceded that a "music hall beauty" might have worn similar feathers or plumes in the West. The nation's name, "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" almost completely circles the head. The overall design essentially debuted with the Type 2; however, on its successor, the letters spelling the country's name were moved to nearer the edge.
The reverse's design is the same across Type 2 and Type 3. It shows a beautifully detailed wreath and, inside this visual motif, the face value "1 DOLLAR" and issue year. Wheat, cotton, corn and tobacco are represented by this wreath, a smaller form of which appeared on Type 1. It really was a case of third-time-lucky, as the Type 3 design stayed without modifications, bar obviously the issue year, until production of the one-dollar gold disc ceased come 1889. Given that it was continually struck for over three decades, it shouldn't surprise that the scarcity of coins from individual issues can significantly vary.
Still, any coins purchased with the placement of orders via this page will show common dates. It is generally not hard to find good condition Princess pieces from 1862, 1874 and many years of the 1880s. However, mintages were low during the American Civil War that waged during the 1860s. Many turbulent events, including the above-mentioned conflict and the West-based Indian Wars, happened when the Princess Type 3 was being regularly minted. Therefore, you could be greatly excited to obtain a little disc of gold from that period.
Features of the Common Date $1 Gold Princess Type 3 MS64: 14.3-millimetre or 0.563-inch diameter 10% copper in an otherwise gold coin Contained gold totals 0.04837 Troy ounces