Stella Coins

The United States four dollar coin, also officially called a Stella, is a unit of currency equaling four United States dollars.

The Stella was a pattern coin produced to explore the possibility of joining the Latin Monetary Union; these patterns were produced in 1879 and 1880.

Two different designs obverse were produced, both bearing the same inscription *6*G*.3*S*.7*C*7*G*R*A*M*S* ("*" is a Unicode character that should be a five-pointed star) and the date.

The reverse star had the inscriptions ONE STELLA and 400 CENTS, while the reverse rim had the legends UNITED STATES OF AMERICA and FOUR DOL., and circling the star but between its points were the legends E PLURIBUS UNUM ("Out of many, one") and DEO EST GLORIA ("To God is the glory").

The coin and the prospect of joining the Latin Monetary Union were rejected by Congress, but not before several hundred restrikes of the Barber design had been produced and sold to Congressmen at the cost of production.

These later became a source of scandal when it was noted that a number of these ended up as jewelry pieces adorning the necks of madams operating some of Washington's most famous bordellos.

Five examples of a pattern quintuple stella denominated at 20 dollars were produced in 1879 as well. These coins used a modified version of the then current Liberty Head (Coronet) design of the double eagle, replacing the stars on the obverse with *30*G*1.5*S*3.5*C*35*G*R*A*M*S*, and the motto IN GOD WE TRUST on the reverse with the same DEO EST GLORIA found on the reverse of the stella.

Stella (United States coin)


  • Value: 4.00 U.S. dollars
  • Mass: 7.00g
  • Diameter: 22.0 mm
  • Thickness: 1.52 mm
  • Edge: reeded
  • Composition: 6.00g Au, 0.30g Ag, 0.70g Cu
  • Observe: Liberty bust
  • Reverse: Five-pointed star

Source: Wikipedia