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Lot
1338

1869 $2 1/2 PR64 Ultra Cameo NGC. CAC....

2009 October Signature US Coin Auction #1130

 
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Auction Ended On: Oct 23, 2009
Item Activity: 6 Internet/mail/phone bidders
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Location:

Heritage Auctions
3500 Maple Avenue
Dallas, TX 75219

Preliminary Lot Viewing
The Saint Charles Convention Center
Booth 501
Saint Charles, MO 63303

 

Description:
Starkly Contrasted 1869 Quarter Eagle
PR64 Ultra Cameo
1869 $2 1/2 PR64 Ultra Cameo NGC. CAC. The 1869 quarter eagle is a fascinating issue, whether in proof or business strike format. Only 4,320 pieces were struck for circulation, and if that is not low enough, a tiny mintage of 25 proofs was produced. Both are very scarce in their own right. Garrett and Guth point out the inherent danger of relying too heavily on population data as an indicator of rarity: "The 1869 ... proof is one of those interesting issues that have a reported population number that is higher than the reported mintage. It is probably the clearest example of the data being misleading as to the true rarity of an issue." Probably no more than 15 to 20 examples exist in all grades, and as Paul Taglione observed more than 25 years ago "a few of which are less-than-inspiring due to cleaning and hairlining."
This is one of the finest examples known. Only five pieces have been certified in higher grades by both of the major services. The two diagnostics for proofs that Breen mentions for this issue are both easily seen here: the low positioning of the date, and the die line at the top of the L in LIBERTY. The fields are deeply mirrored, with the usually seen orange-peel texture. The devices are heavily frosted and present stark cameo contrast on each side. The only mentionable surface imperfection is a planchet flaw above the eagle's right (facing) wing.(Registry values: P5) (NGC ID# 287P, PCGS# 97895)

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