Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    1796 Small Eagle Ten Dollar, AU53
    BD-1, Sole Variety for the Date
    Remarkably Unabraded Surfaces

    1796 $10 BD-1, R.4, AU53 NGC. Bass-Dannreuther Die State c/b. There are 11 leaves on the branch below the eagle and 16 obverse stars (8 left, 8 right) on the BD-1 eagle, which was struck after the June 1 admission of Tennessee to the United States. This example displays the most frequently encountered die stage, with a bisecting vertical crack that runs beneath E in LIBERTY through the portrait, ending at the bust edge above 9 in the date.

    With a reported mintage of 4,196 pieces, the 1796 Capped Bust Right eagle is considerably scarcer than the inaugural 1795 issue. The official mintage may be overstated, since early Mint records are often unclear. Dies were used interchangeably without regard to year as long as they were serviceable. Later die states of the 1796 eagle were clearly struck in 1797 -- a remarriage of the 1796 obverse with a late stage of the reverse, after the reverse die was used to strike 1797-dated coins. The Bass-Dannreuther reference estimates only 125 to 175 pieces exist, and suggests that as few as 3,500 1796-dated pieces were struck. We estimate only about four dozen pieces in About Uncirculated or finer conditions survive.

    The Eric P. Newman kraft envelope describes this coin as a "Perfect Unc. Gem," although some faint rub on the eagle, cap, and forecurl combine for the About Uncirculated designation by NGC. The grade seems a bit conservative, given the exceptional eye appeal, quality of the fields, and a lack of enumerative marks. The breast feathers are nearly complete. Minor incompleteness at the legs, neck, and shoulders of the eagle do not detract from the overall sharpness, nor do some faint parallel striations in the hair that are visible with a glass.

    Prooflike surface remains at the margins and surrounds the eagle. Beautiful Tuscan-gold color retains mint luster in protected areas, with reddish-orange highlights and dappled violet accents. This is a perfectly centered, original example with strong, unblemished rims and sharp dentils throughout both sides.
    Ex: "Colonel" E.H.R. Green; Green Estate via Hans M.F. Schulman 5/10/1944; Eric P. Newman @ $250.00; Eric P. Newman Numismatic Education Society.

    Coin Index Numbers: (Variety PCGS# 45715, Base PCGS# 8554)

    Weight: 17.50 grams

    Metal: 91.67% Gold, 8.33% Copper

    View Certification Details from NGC

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    November, 2017
    1st-3rd Wednesday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 23
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,137

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    20% of the successful bid (minimum $19) per lot.

    Truth Seeker: The Life of Eric P. Newman (softcover)
    A powerful and intimidating dealer of the 1960s, backed by important colleagues, was accused of selling fraudulent gold coins and ingots to unsuspecting numismatists. Who would go up against a man like that and, over the course of decades, prove the fraud? Who would expose a widely respected scholar as a thief, then doggedly pursue recovery of coins that the scholar had stolen from an embarrassed numismatic organization, all over the objections of influential collectors who had bought coins with clouded titles? Eric P. Newman would - and did. Reserve your copy today.
    Sold on Nov 3, 2017 for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)
    Track Item

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Only 23 days left to consign to the 2021 August 18 - 22 ANA WFOM US Coins Signature Auction !

    Learn about consigning with us

    I'm very pleased with how you run the auctions and am certain to consign coins at future events.
    Jeff H.,
    Talking Rock, GA
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search