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    1794 S-33 Wheelspoke Cent, Fine Details
    Tied for Seventh Finest Known
    Fourth Best in Collectors' Hands
    First Auction Appearance

    1794 1C Head of 1794, S-33, B-19, High R.5, VG7 Bland, Good 6 Noyes; Fine Details - Environmental Damage -- Genuine PCGS Secure. This two-tone example has deep bluish-steel field patina with light tan primarily on the high points. A small rim bruise is noted below the 94. Both sides are lightly porous, leading PCGS to note Environmental Damage, but the overall appearance is far nicer than that description suggests. Middle and late die states always have the bulged central reverse that lacks detail.

    Variety Equivalents: Hays 27, Chapman 12.

    Obverse 13: Upturned Locks. The fourth and sixth hair locks, counting from the bottom, are turned upward, and between the, the fifth hair lock is doubled. Except for the earliest die states of S-32, the rim break over LI immediately identifies the obverse. This obverse is found on S-32, S-33, and S-34.

    Reverse K: Wheelspoke Die Cracks. Although there are other characteristics, the radial die cracks and the central bulge are identifying features of all examples. The first crack formed at the I of UNITED. This reverse is only found on S-33.

    Die State V: The omnipresent obverse rim break over LI is clearly visible on this specimen. All six reverse cracks are visible on this late die state piece.

    Rarity and Census: The Wheelspoke cent is one of the important rarities in the 1794 Sheldon-numbered series. Del Bland's Condition Census lists 31 examples of S-33, necessitating a reduction from Low R.6 to High R.5. Despite the lowered rarity, it is important to understand the overall low quality of surviving examples. There is one graded VF25, a second graded VF20 that is in the ANS Collection, two graded Fine 12 also including one in the ANS Collection, one in VG10, and one in VG8 that again is in the ANS Collection. The next three in Bland's Census grade VG7. Those three coins are tied for seventh finest known, but they are tied for fourth best actually available to collectors. Assigned a slightly lower grade of Good 6 in Bill Noyes' Condition Census, this piece appears there as one of three similarly graded pieces tied for ninth finest in his roster.

    Commentary: This variety is also known as the Hays Variety for William Wallace Hays who identified the reverse as a new die in 1888. He discovered the first three examples of the variety, according to Breen in his Large Cent Encyclopedia. The original Hays discovery coin is apparently the Fine 12 that is in the ANS Collection.

    Boka Commentary: The "Wheelspoke" is a difficult variety to find in any condition. I was very fortunate to incur the good will of my longtime friend, Bruce Reinoehl, who offered me this very attractive specimen which shows all spokes very clearly.

    Biography: A childhood friend of Q. David Bowers, one-time coin dealer Kenneth W. Rendell is known today as one of the nation's leading experts in historical documents, and a pioneer in the detection of forged documents. In addition to his document business, Rendell operates a remarkable non-profit World War II museum outside of Boston. Strictly a private museum in the past, it is now available for scheduled visits. See for more information.

    Provenance: Walter Breen; Kenneth W. Rendell (4/1959); C. Douglas Smith (1965); Alfred Bonard; French's (privately, 5/1967); R.E. Naftzger, Jr. (3/1971); Denis W. Loring (12/1977); Charles Gifford (8/1979); Richard V. Punchard (4/1992); Dr. Bruce M. Reinoehl (9/30/2011); Jon Alan Boka.
    From The Jon Alan Boka Collection of 1794 Large Cents.

    View all of [The Jon Alan Boka Collection of 1794 Large Cents ]

    View Certification Details from PCGS

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    September, 2016
    7th-11th Wednesday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 17
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 790

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
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