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Description

1801 Dollar, B-3, BB-213, MS62
One of the Finest Examples Known

1801 $1 MS62 NGC. B-3, BB-213, R.3. Die State II, with the curved clash mark above and to the right of the M in UNUM and light clash mark from the O to cloud 6. Two obverse dies were paired with four reverse dies to produce four distinct varieties of dollars dated 1801. A comprehensive die progression study by Bowers and Borckardt (1993) reveals that three of the four 1801 variants were actually struck in 1802, although the other variety, BB-211, may have been struck after 1801 as well. To paint a simpler picture for collectors, Bowers states: "... 1801 B-213 has broken T letters on the reverse from the employment of a broken T punch. 1802 BB-241 has the same broken T on the obverse. As the 1802 obverse die could not have been made in 1801, nor would it have made sense to have made it in 1803, this isolates the year 1802 for the production of the reverse used to coin 1801 BB-213, another verification that 1801 BB-213 was struck in 1802 at the earliest." The practice of recording the number of coins struck during a specific year, regardless of the actual date on the dies used to produce the coins, was actually common during the early years of the first Mint. As such, official government mintages are of tangential value.
Of course, when dealing with unusually high grade coins such as the current piece, the Condition Census is of greater interest to collectors. For that information we turn to numismatic researchers and early dollar specialists to help determine the conditional rank of certain specimens. Bowers lists the Condition Census for BB-213 as 60-58-58-58-55, although some suggest that grading standards have loosened since his 1993 opinion. What is clear to us, however, is that the current example is certainly anchored well within the roster of the finest known BB-213 dollars--an opinion that is bolstered by published population data. For example, as of (3/08) the highest grade awarded to this variety by NGC is a sole MS62--this piece--although we add the disclaimer that five others have been certified at the same level without distinction of the variety. Being that BB-213 is the third scarcest of the four 1801 dollar varieties, it is probable that the other MS62 coins represent the two more common die marriages.
The new owner of this specimen will revel in its splendid eye appeal. Radiant luster serves to amplify the rich, variegated amber and gunmetal-gray coloration throughout. The details are well defined on both sides, with bold star details on the obverse and full feather definition on the eagle's breast. Truly a coin for the connoisseur.
From The Queller Family Collection of Silver Dollars. (Variety PCGS# 40085, Base PCGS# 6893)

View all of [The Queller Family Collection of Silver Dollars ]

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Auction Dates
April, 2008
16th-19th
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 10
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