Adam Starkey

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Barber Dimes

By 1891, the public had grown weary of the Seated Liberty coinage that had clinked in their pockets for over 50 years. Consequently, U.S. Mint director Leech instructed Chief Engraver Charles E. Barber to prepare designs for the coins that now bear his name. The result was a new dime, quarter, and half dollar rendered in a distinctly neoclassical Roman design that drew influence from contemporary French coinage circulating in Europe. Like other Barber coins, the obverse of the Barber dime features Liberty, facing right, wearing an olive branch crown termed a pileus, as well as a headband inscribed with LIBERTY. The Barber dime reverse design shows a wreath encircling the denomination, like that of the Seated Liberty dime, but different from the Barber quarter and half dollar. Barber coins were produced from 1892 through the middle of the first World War in 1916, except for the half dollar, which ended one year earlier.

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