Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    Mint State 1797 Eagle
    Heraldic Eagle Reverse
    Rarest Variety, BD-3

    1797 $10 Large Eagle MS61 NGC. BD-3, R.5. Bass-Dannreuther Die State d/b. The Small Eagle reverse design was retired in 1797, in favor of the majestic Heraldic Eagle motif. A reported mintage of 10,940 Capped Bust Right eagles was accomplished with the new design, and three die varieties are known for the date and type. The present coin represents the rarest of the 1797-dated varieties, the BD-3, which probably had an original mintage in the 1,750-2,500 piece range, but may not have been struck in 1797. The BD-3 is easily recognized by the short thin neck on the eagle and the irregular cross pattern of the stars on the reverse. John Dannreuther estimates no more than 40-50 examples of the BD-3 remain extant in all grades.
    Die state evidence indicates the BD-3 was actually struck after both varieties of the 1798/7 eagle, which employ the same reverse die in earlier states. There is some doubt about the engraver of this reverse die, as the tail feathers and shield stripes resemble other dies by John Smith Gardner, while the short eagle's neck is more typical of Robert Scot's work. Perhaps both men had a hand in engraving this die. The same obverse die was used to strike all three varieties of the date.
    The present coin is a rare Mint State example of the BD-3, which is seldom encountered in higher grades. The vivid greenish-gold surfaces display vibrant mint luster, with the expected number of minor contact marks for the grade. Some faint adjustment marks are visible in the obverse rim and the lower bust. The design elements are well-detailed, with just a touch of softness on the central devices. This coin will be a welcome addition to a fine collection of early gold. Census (for all varieties): 34 in 61, 19 finer (4/12).(Registry values: P3)

    Coin Index Numbers: (NGC ID# 25ZY, PCGS# 8559)

    Weight: 17.50 grams

    Metal: 91.67% Gold, 8.33% Copper

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

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    May-Jun, 2012
    31st-3rd Thursday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 22
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 2,788

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    15% of the successful bid (minimum $14) per lot.

    Sold 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 27 days left to consign to the 2021 January 6 - 10 FUN US Coins Signature Auction - Orlando FUN!

    Learn about consigning with us

    You have not just a fine firm but a collection of outstanding individuals whom we consider ourselves privileged to know and now consider friends. From me, and from my heart, I just say thank you for a great job of bringing my collecting life to a gratifying close.
    Eugene G.,
    Lancaster, PA
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search