1853 Arrows and Rays Quarter, PR63
1853 25C Arrows and Rays PR63 PCGS. The specialist will
recognize the importance of this piece as an extremely rare
pre-1858 proof coin and as a one-year type coin with Arrows at the
date and Rays on the reverse. Our roster of proof 1853 Arrows and
Rays quarters lists nine different pieces, although two or three
may be prooflike business strikes, per our notes. The present
specimen ranks between fourth and sixth finest of proof survivors,
depending on the proper attribution of the Eliasberg and Norweb
coins as proofs or prooflike pieces. Past researchers have
suggested as few as five proofs were minted, but the actual
mintage, if known, may prove to be closer to 20 pieces. This Select
proof has a sharp strike with mottle gray and gold toning. A small
scratch below the date will aid in tracking the provenance.
Historic One Year Type Coin
1. PR67 NGC. Heritage (3/2003), lot 5688; Heritage (7/2008), lot 1640; Heritage (4/2010), lot 2087.
2. PR66 Cameo NGC. Phil Kaufman Collection (Heritage, 8/2007), lot 1785; Heritage (1/2009), lot 3766.
3. PR65 Cameo NGC. Louis E. Eliasberg, Sr. (Bowers and Merena, 4/1997), lot 1454; Heritage (1/1998), lot 6782; Richmond Collection (David Lawrence, 3/2005), lot 1522; Heritage (4/2009), lot 2353; Heritage (1/2010), lot 2518. In the Eliasberg catalog, Dave Bowers described this piece as MS64, prooflike, noting "possibly a candidate for 'proof' attribution." Since the time of that sale, it has been certified as a proof.
4. PR64 NGC. Jerome Kern Collection (B. Max Mehl, 5/1950), lot 1445; John Jay Pittman (David Akers, 5/1998), lot 1325; Bowers and Merena (8/1999), lot 141; Goldberg Coins (2/2002), lot 704; Superior (1/2004), lot 287.
5. MS64, prooflike. Thomas L. Elder; Norweb Collection (Bowers and Merena, 3/1988), lot 1594. Dave Bowers cataloged the Norweb coin as a prooflike business strike, but a decade later Dave Akers included it in his census of proofs.
6. PR63 PCGS. The present specimen. Auction '80 (Stack's, 8/1980), lot 1184; Auction '90 (Stack's, 8/1990), lot 143; Stack's (5/1992), lot 2659; Superior (6/1999), lot 2099; Superior (10/2000), lot 4360; Goldberg Coins (5/2001), lot 561; Superior (1/2004), lot 2354.
7. Proof. Lester Merkin (6/1968), lot 291; Stack's (10/1990), lot 1638.
8. PR63 Uncertified. Heritage (6/1986), lot 566.
9. Proof. National Numismatic Collection; Smithsonian Institution(Registry values: P5) (NGC ID# 23WU, PCGS# 5548)
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