The 1797 Draped Bust Dollar (Buy on eBay) saw the lowest mintage of the series for a regular issue at just 7,776 pieces. The limited production was the result of the continued friction between Congress and the early mint, as well as the impact of the yellow fever epidemic. Interestingly this issue is not as rare as the mintage would indicate, and actually can be found at approximately the same price level as other silver dollars of this type.
Starting this year, the number of stars appearing on the obverse was increased to sixteen. Tennessee had been admitted to the Union in the prior year, however this was apparently after all of the dies had already been engraved for that year.
Noted varieties for the 1797 silver dollar include different star arrangements (10 left, 6 right versus 9 left, 7 right) and either small or medium letters on the reverse. Most examples show wear from circulation, as is common with this type, although a number of uncirculated specimens have recently come to the market.
- Date: 1797
- Mint Mark: none
- Mint Location: Philadelphia
- Composition: 89.24% silver, 10.76% copper
- Weight: 26.96 grams
- Diameter: 39.5 mm
- Designer: Robert Scot
- Mintage: 7,776