1802/0 Draped Bust Half Cent. C-1. Rarity-5+. Reverse of 1800. VG-8 (PCGS). Type: Type IV: Draped Bust.Design: Obv: A draped bust of Liberty faces right, her hair tied with a ribbon. The word LIBERTY is above and the date 1802/0 is below. Rev: A wreath surrounds the denomination HALF CENT, the legend UNITED STATES OF AMERICA around the border and another expression of the denomination, 1/200, below. A ribbon knot with double bow binds the base of the wreath.Weight Standard: 84 grains (5.44 grams). Diameter: 23.5 mm.Die Variety: Cohen-1, Breen-1, Gilbert-2. Obv: The only 1802-dated die in the half cent series, and an overdate employing an unused 1800-dated die. The left foot of the letter T in LIBERTY is missing. Rev: Single leaf at the top of each branch in the wreath, four berries on the left branch, four on the right branch; the outer berry below the letter E in UNITED is often obscured by die rust. Several faint defects from die rust are present around and below the letters ITE in UNITED, within the top of the wreath, between the words UNITED and STATES, and at the letter C in CENT. This reverse die was previously used in the 1800 C-1 marriage, the only known variety of that date.Cohen-1 corresponds to the Reverse of 1800 <em>Guide Book</em> variety of the 1802/0 half cent.Die State: Manley 2.0, the rarer of the two die states known. Obv: The die has been reground and repolished, the lowest hair curl left of the digit 1 in the date weak and appearing to be open. Rust lumps are present between the letters IB in LIBERTY, within the upper loop of the digit 8 in the date, and within the top of the digit 0 in the date. Rev: The same as Manley 5.0 of the 1800 C-1 variety. The large rust lump in the left branch of the wreath below the letter E in UNITED engulfs the outer berry and is connected to the base of the E. The word OF in the legend is softly struck and nearly indistinct.Edge: Plain.Mintage: The generally accepted mintage of this issue is 20,266 coins, achieved in three deliveries:-August 8, 1802: 8,200 coins-September 14, 1802: 6,166 coins-August 8, 1803: 5,900 coinsEstimated Surviving Population for the Issue: 230 to 650 coins in all grades.Estimated Surviving Population for the Die Variety: Rarity-5+: 30 to 50 coins in all grades.Strike: Striking quality is typical of the variety, the word OF on the reverse all but illegible, and softness extending right along the border to affect the word AMERICA, which is faint. There is no denticulation along the right reverse border, but traces are seen elsewhere on that side. The wreath, both expressions of the denomination, and the words UNITED STATES are suitably bold for the assigned grade. Obverse detail is more balanced with Libertys portrait fully outlined, the word LIBERTY and the date bold, and denticulation present around much of the border. The end of the bust is blunt.Surfaces: Pleasing deep brown patina is seen on both sides with intermingled olive-charcoal that is more extensive on the reverse. The surfaces are microporous, especially on the reverse, with traces of corrosion on that side. A shallow depression in the upper left obverse field is noted, as are a few scratches on the reverse at the final letter A in AMERICA and within the wreath below the adjacent IC, and a shallow scuff at the upper right side of the wreath.Commentary: The Mint delivered the final 1800-dated half cents on December 12 of that year, exhausting its supply of high quality copper planchets from Boulton & Watt. The resulting suspension in coinage for this denomination continued for more than a year, during which time the Mint received more cent planchets from its Birmingham supplier, but none for the half cent. In preparation for a resumption of half cent production, spoiled large cents were set aside, allowing coinage to resume after the remaining 1800-dated coins had been distributed. This occurred on August 8, 1802, as above, but contrary to what was previously thought, the first 1802-dated half cents struck were from the C-2 die pairing. The rarer C-1, offered here, was actually struck in between earlier and later die states of its C-2 counterpart. Even though no known 1802/0 C-1 displays evidence of an undertype, all coins of this date (both Cohen numbers) are believed to have been struck on cut down, rolled out spoiled cent stock.Although the Mints production of half cents for calendar year 1802 amounted to only 14,366 coins, the accepted mintage for this 1802/0 is the aforementioned figure of 20,266 coins. The 5,900 examples delivered on August 8, 1803 were struck on spoiled cent stock and, since no 1803-dated half cents with a discernible undertype have come to light, these coins are also believed to have been from the 1802-dated obverse.Far rarer than its identically dated C-2 counterpart, the 1802/0 C-1 is one of the leading rarities among half cent varieties. Only 30 to 50 examples are extant, all of which are in low grades. Very Fine is the best that EAC grading standards can muster for the 1802/0 C-1 half cent. With a bold date and the wreath sufficiently clear to show the diagnostic single leaf at the top of each branch, the ESM specimen has much to offer for this elusive and exceptionally challenging die marriage. The surfaces are quite pleasing, adding further desirability. From the ESM Collection. Earlier from Heritages sale of the Joseph C. Thomas Collection, April-May 2009 CSNS Signature Auction, lot 2023.