The coins inscribed Continental Currency on one side and American Congress on the other side are dated 1776. Everything is simple : they are the first metal dollars. They are rather uncommon but with several variants of dies.
Well no ! This emission did not reveal its mysteries. The numismatists of the eighteenth century considered it as a fantasy and their long forgotten arguments are admissible.
Americans like to record their decisions with the greatest precision, as evidenced for the paper money at the same time. The Continental dollar is not referred anywhere before an almanac published in Germany for 1784.
This surprising fact leads to resurface some intriguing observations.
It was easy to print paper to circulate a currency that was not based on a wealth. It was indeed illusory to set up in parallel a metal coinage for the same use. Moreover the production of the Continental dollar was made in three material variants, silver, brass and pewter, without an apparent consideration to the price of these metals.
The American origin of this model was even questioned by the ancient numismatists. One of the causes of the breakdown of the paper money is the British counterfeit. Metallic coins could be at best a medal of remembrance, at worst one of the British attempts to discredit the ability of the colonies to manage their finances.
The silver Continental Dollar is highly rare. Two of them were sold for $ 1.53M each including premium by Heritage in January 2015.
On June 14 in Long Beach, Heritage sells as lot 3768 a Continental dollar in pewter, previously sold for $ 550K including premium by the same auction house in January 2012. This piece graded MS67 by NGC is the best surviving specimen from all categories. Please watch the video shared by Heritage.
SOLD for $ 440K including premium