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    1796 B-1 Low 6 Quarter, MS60
    Bright Prooflike Fields

    1796 25C MS60 PCGS Secure. B-1, R.4. Die State 3. Only two die pairings, B-1 and B-2, were used to produce the recorded 6,146 examples of the 1796 quarter, the first year the new silver denomination was produced at the U.S. Mint, along with a new gold denomination, the quarter eagle. The two obverse dies for the quarter, often called the Low 6 and High 6 dies, were combined with a single reverse for the production. The Low 6 B-1 is a bit rarer, but the desirability of the first-year type diminishes the price premium between the two varieties: Any 1796 quarter, from near-smooth Poor 1 pieces to the finest Uncirculated examples, are the subject of intense collector demand.
    The B-2 shows the 6 virtually touching the drapery, while star 13 is more distant from the bust than on the Low 6. Per recent research presented by Steve Tompkins in Early United States Quarters 1796-1838, despite the backwards Browning numbering system, the B-2 die pairing was clearly struck first, as can be seen from the greater wear on the common reverse when it is paired with the B-1 obverse. The B-2 obverse cracked during production in several stages, advancing in later phases to where three distinct cracks show, at which time the B-1 obverse was taken up to finish the manufacture. In the latest stage of the B-1 pairing, a die crack forms on the reverse as well.
    It is well-known, and part of the lore and legend of the 1796 quarters, that the famous Colonel E.H.R. Green possessed a hoard that possibly numbered several hundred pieces, many of them prooflike and most of them likely B-2 coins, given their 3:1 predominance over the B-1s. This is one of the scarcer B-1 (Low 6) variety with clearly prooflike fields on each side. The surfaces are almost entirely brilliant with just a hint of golden peripheral color. Numerous shallow die adjustment marks run diagonally across the upper obverse. The strike is sharp on the obverse, but the breast and head of the eagle are soft on the reverse. Numerous small abrasions are scattered over each side, consistent with the grade. A superior example of this always-popular one-year type.(Registry values: P7) (NGC ID# 23RA, PCGS# 5310)

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    Auction Dates
    January, 2013
    9th-14th Wednesday-Monday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 7
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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    In 37 years of collecting, this was the most thorough and secure packing I've ever seen. I truly appreciate their diligence and attention to detail.
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    Savannah, GA
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