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    Description

    Very Rare 1821 Proof Quarter Eagle, Ex: James A. Stack Collection

    1821 $2 1/2 PR63 PCGS. The 1821 is the first year of the modified Capped Head Left design. The dies were prepared by Robert Scot after John Reich's concept and departure from the Engraving Department several years before. It is somewhat similar to the 1808 in overall concept with a reduced diameter. However, the central portrait is smaller and the stars completely encircle the head of Liberty. This design was continued until 1834 with only one minor change in 1828, when the diameter was slightly increased.
    Estimates of the number of proofs extant today range between 7 and 12 pieces. While we will probably never know the exact reason for the issuance of proofs of this denomination in 1821, two ideas have been proposed in the past. One theory, put forward by Walter Breen, is that these pieces commemorated the resumption of this denomination after a 12-year hiatus. Another possible reason was to produce presentation pieces in connection with the presidential inauguration of James Monroe in March of this year.
    According to Breen, "some (proofs and business strikes) have a tiny depression on cheek from foreign matter adhering to die." This or a similar defect is also present on the Eliasberg and Garrett coins, and it is notably absent on the prooflike business strike in the Norweb Collection. This piece certainly shows that defect with a long, shallow, angling planchet flaw on Liberty's cheek, enabling positive identification as the James A. Stack coin.
    The fields on each side of this piece show innumerable die striations, which give the coin its deeply reflective appearance. A few light hairlines can also be seen when closely examined, but these have no significant impact on the overall appearance or desirability of this very rare proof striking. Magnification also shows several very light roller marks across the cheek of Liberty. The striking details are strong throughout with the only mentionable areas of softness on the trailing hair curl in front of Liberty's ear, and on the reverse on the feathers of the eagle's wing just to the left of the shield. This is an exceptional opportunity to acquire this very rare coin that is infrequently offered at public auction.
    Ex: James A. Stack Collection (Stack's, 10/94), lot 840, where it brought $67,500.
    From The Gold Rush Collection.(#7677) (Registry values: P3) (NGC ID# BFWE, PCGS# 7677)


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    Auction Dates
    January, 2005
    12th-15th Wednesday-Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 11
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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