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1831 B-4 Quarter, MS66
Small Letters Reverse
Tied for Finest Known

1831 25C Small Letters MS66 PCGS. B-4, R.1. An early die state with a perfect obverse and a reverse crack from the border to the C in the denomination, and faintly into the eagle's feathers and wing left of the shield.

Although the Mint was partially mechanized by the early 1830s, this piece falls at the tail-end of the "hand-crafted" period of coinage operations in Philadelphia. Construction had begun on the second Mint at the corner of Chestnut and Juniper streets, but the facility would not be completed for several months with its first occupancy in January 1833. At the first Mint, coinage was still accomplished with screw presses when this coin was struck. The Mint workmen were clearly capable of producing a beautiful product in the early 1830s, as this coin testifies.

Although a few stars are incomplete, the overall design definition of this Premium Gem is exceptional. The fields are lightly but fully mirrored, providing a suitable background for the lustrous devices. Both sides have pale champagne toning at the centers with outstanding peripheral iridescence, an exquisite specimen destined for the finest cabinet.

A Condition Census of the early quarters, compiled by specialists Rory Rea, Jim Koenings, and Aram Haroutunian, records three MS66 examples of this variety sharing top honors for the variety. This highly prooflike example is a fourth Premium Gem, and those four coins are tied for the finest known examples of the variety. There are also four proof examples recorded in the same census, each with a grade of PR64. Population: 5 in 66, 0 finer (6/13), for all 1831 varieties.(Registry values: P1) (NGC ID# 23RW, PCGS# 5348)

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Auction Dates
July, 2013
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 13
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