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    1796 Small Eagle Dime, MS64
    Imposing JR-2 Example

    1796 10C MS64 NGC. JR-2, R.4. Ex: Ed Price Collection. Gunmetal-blue toning with olive-green and golden-brown accents covers both sides of this remarkable near-Gem Small Eagle dime. The surfaces are largely prooflike beneath the rich toning. Obverse motifs are boldly struck and Choice, with the fields unmarked except for one or two minor, wispy ticks. Liberty's hair strands and curls are strongly defined. On the reverse, the eagle displays sharp feather definition on the wings, although softness exists on the breast, head, and legs.

    Variety: JR-2, R.4. Obverse with date spaced 1 79 6, and star 15 touches the bust. Reverse with a berry under the left edge of star 1; inner berry between bow and bottom leaves. The left base of A2 is near a leaf tip. The only use of these dies.

    Population Data (5/14): Likely Condition Census for the variety, possibly second or third finest for the variety. The Eliasberg-Whitney coin is clearly better, but we find no other auction appearances that have yielded a finer JR-2 dime than this one.

    Heritage Commentary: As a two-year type with the Small Eagle reverse, the 1796 dime is the "first year of issue" for general circulation, and has long been a necessity for collectors. Six die pairs were used to strike a total reported mintage of 22,135 pieces, although there is always a question with early dates whether the mintage consists only of pieces dated for that year, or if coins dated with other years are included in the shipments.

    Only about 10% of surviving 1796 dimes are examples of the JR-2 die combination. The authors of Early United States Dimes 1796-1837 provided these estimates of the survivors for each variety: JR-1 (40%), JR-2 (10%), JR-3 (5%), JR-4 (10%), JR-5 (5%), and JR-6 (30%). JR-4 seems to be found more easily in higher grades than JR-2 based on auction appearances over the past 15 years.

    Provenance: Palm Beach Signature (Heritage, (11/2004), lot 6175; Stuart Levine; The Ed Price Collection / Baltimore ANA Signature (Heritage, 7/2008), lot 1409.(Registry values: P7) (NGC ID# 236B, PCGS# 4461)

    Weight: 2.70 grams

    Metal: 89.24% Silver, 10.76% Copper

    Learn more at the Newman Numismatic Portal at Washington University in St. Louis.

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    Auction Dates
    June, 2014
    23rd Monday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 19
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,112

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