This year marks the beginning of our pattern journey. The pieces below represent the mints first products. Detailed information on these pieces can be found by clicking here.
The Mint experimented with making a one cent piece comprised of 3/4 of a cent in silver and 1/4 of a cent in copper. It was made in two formats, a fusible alloy and/or copper and one with a silver plug. The latter is known as the silver center cent J1/P1
In addition to this design, 2 full sized copper cent patterns were produced - J6/P3 which is only known from the white metal striking below
Half dimes J7/P7 were produced supposedly made from silver supplied by George Washington himself although this is now believed to be an old wives tale. Because of the large quantities minted, these are considered by many to be the first production coins made for circulation by the U.S. Mint and not truly a pattern. A single example is also known in copper.
The ten cent denomination J9/P10 is represented by the coin below. They were made in both silver and copper.
All of these show the motto "Liberty, Parent of Science and Industry" on them. The last denomination, made this year, the quarter dollar J12/P14 shows only the shortened motto "Liberty" which we see on our coinage today. Examples were struck in copper and white metal.
Uniface impressions of both the obverse JA1792-1/P3001 and reverse JA1792-2/P3004 still exist.
Photos used are courtesy of the National Numismatic Collection of the Smithsonian Institution, Stacks, the Museum of the American Numismatic Association and a scan of Bowers and Ruddy's Garrett IV sale.
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