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Near-Gem 1800 Half Eagle, BD-4
One Certified Finer at Either Service

1800 $5 MS64 NGC. CAC. Breen-6439, BD-4, R.4. Bass-Dannreuther Obverse State c/ Reverse State a. Faint crack through IBER. There were five die pairings used to strike the 1800-dated half eagles. The sole so-called (by Bass-Dannreuther) Pointed 1 die marriage, BD-1, used a completely different obverse die, with a reverse carried over from 1799. (Although, interestingly, the 1800-dated Pointed 1 was struck between various 1799 pairings, according to Bass-Dannreuther.)
The other four Blunt 1 marriages, BD-2 through BD-5, used the same obverse. There is no flag atop the 1 in the date, hence the name. The reverse was used for this sole die pairing, and a most interesting reverse die it is. The letters in UNITED ST all show apparent strike or "bounce" doubling, where the die bounced with separation between the blows to the planchet. The M in AMERICA, on the other hand, is clearly repunched, "seemingly from the same punch" as Bass-Dannreuther say (why would it be different?). The inside bottom-left serif of the last A in AMERICA touches the eagle's claw.
The surfaces are orange-gold with a greenish tinge, and in concert with the near-Gem grade, this is an especially pleasing and essentially pristine example of this very scarce (and conditionally rare at this grade level) variety. There are no planchet adjustment marks visible on either side, an effect that, while technically not grade-affecting, many collectors do consider in aesthetic and purchase considerations. A couple of small marks appear in front of Liberty's face. A boldly struck and meritorious potential acquisition for early gold specialists. NGC has graded only seven submissions in this grade, PCGS six, and only a single MS66 PCGS specimen is finer (7/11).
Ex: Husky Collection (Stack's, 6/2008), lot 2062, which realized $69,000.
From The Oliver Collection.(Registry values: P2) (NGC ID# 25NW, PCGS# 8082)

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Auction Dates
August, 2011
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 5
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