Draped Bust Half Dime (1796 - 1805) 

The Draped Bust Half Dime, minted from 1796 to 1805, represents a significant chapter in early American coinage history. Designed by Robert Scot, the Chief Engraver of the United States Mint 

The obverse of the Draped Bust Half Dime features a right-facing bust of Liberty with her hair draped in flowing curls and tied with a ribbon.  

The word "LIBERTY" is inscribed above the bust, and the date of mintage appears below. This portrayal of Liberty is elegant and refined, reflecting the neoclassical artistic style popular during the late 18th and early 19th centuries. 

On the reverse of the coin is a small eagle, depicted with outstretched wings and holding an olive branch and arrows in its talons. Above the eagle is the inscription "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA," and the denomination "HALF DIME" is below. 

The design is simple yet symbolic, evoking the ideals of freedom and independence cherished by the young nation. 

The Draped Bust Half Dime was minted using a composition of 89.24% silver and 10.76% copper, giving it a distinctive appearance and value. It was the smallest denomination of circulating coinage at the time and was used in everyday transactions. 

Surviving specimens of the Draped Bust Half Dime are highly sought after by collectors and numismatists for their historical significance and scarcity.  

They serve as tangible artifacts of America's early coinage history and the nation's journey towards establishing its own currency system. 

The Draped Bust Half Dime holds a special place in American numismatic history as it represents not only a transition in design but also a period of growth and development for the young United States.  

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