1797 $2 1/2
Rare 1797 Quarter Eagle--Tied For Finest Known1797 AU 53 PCGS. The 1797 quarter eagle is one of the rarest quarter eagles struck. Its mintage of 427 pieces is comparable to the 1796 With Stars, but fewer examples have survived of this date. All specimens show a long die break that extends from the Y in LIBERTY to the rim below the 13th star. On this coin it is in an advanced state with the break being quite heavy. The reverse die was apparently made in 1796 as it has 16 stars randomly scattered above the head of the eagle. This reverse was also used again, to strike the 1798/7 dime.
Possibly as many as 20 pieces survive today in all grades with a couple of mint state coins alleged to exist, but these have not been seen in over 20 years. At present, this coin is tied with two other pieces at the AU 53 level for finest known honors. This is quite a distinctive coin and one that should be easy to recognize for pedigree purposes. There is a curved lint mark in the left obverse field, another series of intersecting ones in the field in front of the nose of Liberty, and adjustment marks in the center of each side. The strike is strongly defined in all areas that are free from adjustment marks. This is a historic offering of this very rare early quarter eagle and should be seriously considered by anyone interested in early U.S. numismatics. (NGC ID# 25F4, PCGS# 7648)
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