Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice
Heritage is in the process of relocating its world headquarters to a new Dallas area location, which will be announced soon. Please call 214-528-3500 to confirm all Heritage appointments, events or deliveries in Dallas, as our departments and staff are moving at different times from separate locations.

    Description

    1796 No Stars Quarter Eagle, MS63
    BD-2, Bright Yellow-Gold Example
    Among the Finest Known of This One-Year Type

    1796 $2 1/2 No Stars on Obverse, BD-2, R.4, MS63 NGC. Bass-Dannreuther Die State d/b. The 1796 No Stars quarter eagle shares a reputation with its later sibling, the 1808 quarter eagle, as among the most significant and rarest gold type coins of any denomination. Both are single-year types, with low mintages (an estimated 963 pieces for the 1796 No Stars, and 2,710 coins for the 1808).

    The 1796 No Stars quarter eagles are now known to appear in two varieties, with the Normal Arrows (BD-2) and Extended Arrows (BD-1) reverses sharing a single obverse. Although the BD-1 pairing is considerably rarer in terms of numbers known, the incredible demand for the 1796 No Stars overall, as a first-year type, lessens the price differences between the two varieties. An appearance of either variant at auction is bound to be the occasion for intense bidding on the part of multiple collectors. (This is a similar phenomenon to the 1796 Draped Bust quarter dollars, also one-year types known in two varieties.)

    The companion piece to the 1796 No Stars is the 1796 With Stars quarter eagle, which is also technically a one-year type with an even lower mintage (put at 432 coins, based on delivery warrants). Even though the 1796 With Stars is the only obverse in the series with 16 stars, it is an underrated variety due to its association with the other With Stars quarter eagles (showing 13 or 14 stars), which extend through the 1807 issue.

    The celebrated B. Max Mehl 1941 auction of the William Forrester Dunham Collection provides an interesting comparison between the 1796 No Stars and With Stars quarter eagles during an earlier era, when type collecting was not as popular. Lot 1904 was a 1796 No Stars, "just a shade from uncirculated, with considerable semi-proof on the surface, especially on reverse. The upper right part of reverse was not as bold as the rest of the coin. A beautiful specimen of this rare and valuable coin. Listed at $150.00 in very fine condition." The lot nonetheless brought only $81.50.

    Lot 1905 in the Dunham Collection was a 1796 With Stars quarter eagle, which Mehl cataloged as "extremely fine, with considerable semi-proof surface. Extremely rare. Listed at $250.00." The lot brought $185.

    Two Gem examples of the 1796 No Stars and With Stars from our FUN 2008 Signature provide much more recent comparisons. The finest certified 1796 No Stars MS65 PCGS (Heritage, 1/2008), lot 3058, a coin pedigreed to the legendary collection of Lorin G. Parmelee, realized $1,725,000. The 1796 With Stars MS65 NGC, also the only certified Gem, brought $1,006,250 in the same auction. Clearly, the marketplace today values the 1796 No Stars more highly, given the increased emphasis and popularity of type collecting.

    This high-grade example has uniformly bright yellow-gold surfaces. The centers on each side show the usual softness, and the reverse displays light, diagonal die adjustment marks. Both obverse and reverse display the small, scattered abrasions one would expect from an MS63. The only marks that might be used for pedigree purposes is a curved abrasion in the upper-right obverse field, and a shallow scrape on the reverse between STATES and OF. Census: 2 in 63, 1 finer (8/19).
    Ex: Philadelphia Signature (Heritage, 8/2012), lot 5281, realized $252,625.
    From The Warshaw Family Collection.

    Coin Index Numbers: (Variety PCGS# 45501, Base PCGS# 7645)

    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 Warshaw Family Collection ]

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    January, 2020
    8th-12th Wednesday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 37
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 3,784

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

    Sold for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)
    Track Item

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    VIEW BENEFITS
    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
      winnings 
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Only 15 days left to consign to the 2020 August 5 - 7 ANA Worlds' Fair of Money World Coins Signature Auction - Pittsburgh!

    Learn about consigning with us

    The results were astonishing - - Heritage sold my coins for double the most optimistic price that I had dreamed of!
    [ Entire Letter » ]
    Louis Bassano, New Jersey State Senate,
    Union, NJ
    View More Testimonials

    HA.com receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source: Similarweb.com)

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search