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    Fabulous MS62 BD-1 1821 Quarter Eagle

    1821 $2 1/2 MS62 NGC. BD-1, R.5. The quarter eagle had a surprising level of continuity in strikings from its debut in 1796 to its exit in 1929, with only two gaps of any significance. The second took place near the end of the quarter eagle's time, with a decade's gap between the Indian quarter eagles of 1915 and the 1925-D issue. The only longer space without quarter eagle coinage took place earlier in the denomination's history, when production halted after the minuscule mintage of the 1808 two and a half and did not resume until a new batch of quarter eagles was made in 1821.
    The creator of the 1808 dies, John Reich, had departed from the Mint in the interim, after nearly a decade of service; numismatic legend has it that he grew frustrated with his perpetually dim prospects of achieving the Chief Engraver's post. As recounted by Bass and Dannreuther in their Early U.S. Gold Coin Varieties, "For whatever reason he left, only Robert Scot was around when the new dies were prepared in 1821 and he is credited with the major punches--the head and eagle. Scot's eyesight was failing, so it is possible a contract engraver modified the Reich design."
    Among the noteworthy characteristics of high-end 1821 quarter eagles is that many show substantial reflectivity in the fields. This yellow-gold piece is no exception, and a touch of frostiness to the exquisitely struck devices adds a touch of lovely contrast. The fields are remarkably clean; the shallow marks below Liberty's eye are adjustment marks, and only a long, thin abrasion at the cap and ear precludes Select status. Census: 3 in 62, 1 finer (11/08).
    From The James Mossman Collection.(Registry values: P6) (NGC ID# BFW3, PCGS# 7662)

    Weight: 4.37 grams

    Metal: 91.67% Gold, 8.33% Copper


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

    View all of [The James Mossman Collection ]

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    Auction Dates
    January, 2009
    7th-11th Wednesday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 5
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