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Significant Early State 1797 BD-2 Eagle, AU53
Perfect Obverse Die

1797 $10 Large Eagle AU53 PCGS. Breen-6834, Taraszka-12, BD-2, High R.4. Three die varieties are known for the 1797 Heraldic Eagle tens, all from a single obverse die. Until cataloger John Dale Beety of the Heritage staff examined this coin, it was believed that every example from all three die pairings had a die crack through the final 7.
The BD-2 die combination was first used to produce a copper die trial early in the year. The unique surviving copper example has no trace of the obverse die crack. Next, the present example and probably a few others were struck, also without the obverse crack, while showing the small rust lump on the top of the second T in STATES, apparently present on all die states. Those coins were followed by examples of BD-2 with a light die crack through the 7. Later die states exist with a much heavier crack through the 7, the same die state also seen on all examples of BD-3 and BD-4.
The present coin has light yellow color with minor abrasions in the obverse fields. Slight central weakness is seen on the obverse, but the reverse is sharply defined. There is no evidence of die lapping or clash marks that might indicate a later die state. Prooflike luster is present on the obverse near the border, through the date, and through LIBERTY. The reverse is entirely prooflike. The prooflike appearance lends credence to our belief that this specific coin was among the first 1797 eagles struck in April of that year. Its importance as a possible unique early die state piece cannot be overstated.(Registry values: P3) (NGC ID# 25ZY, PCGS# 8559)

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Auction Dates
October, 2009
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 7
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