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    1916 Standing Liberty Quarter, MS66+
    CAC-Approved Full Head
    Exceptional Preservation and Luster

    1916 25C MS66+ Full Head PCGS Secure. CAC. The 1916 is unique in the Standing Liberty quarter series in several respects, not least among them the fact that it is the only date showing, what was at the time of issue, a knowingly unfinished design. Although nearly identical to MacNeil's original models from the spring of 1916, what the Mint produced in December was of significantly lower relief with an inferior level of sharpness. Trial impressions of this version of design were initially approved by Mint Director F.H. von Engelken in late October 1916, but correspondence from November suggests that the director had later become unhappy with the softness of the obverse details. A letter to von Engelken from Superintendent A.M. Joyce, dated November 13, 1916, stated:

    "In reply to your letter of November 11th I beg to say, after conferring with the Engraver, that it will be impossible for us to sharpen up the details in the shield in the design of the quarter dollar, unless the final issue of the same is considerably delayed.

    "While on this subject, might I suggest that the final ordering of the delivery of this design be deferred until the occasion of our conference in Washington, November 20th? ... My motive for this suggestion in regard to the quarter is the possibility of a marked improvement in the design."

    By the time improvements were made to the sharpness of the design, the engraving department was preparing 1917-dated hubs. Rather than consume time and resources creating a new 1916 hub for what would be a barely measurable last-minute coinage, the improvements were only implemented on hubs for 1917 coinage. The Mint Director and Treasury Secretary William McAdoo agreed to let the 1916 quarter go into a limited production as is, using the low-relief, poorly detailed dies that were already on hand. A token quantity of 52,000 Standing Liberty quarters was struck at the tail end of 1916. The debut issue is the only date in the series that shows an unfinished engraving of MacNeil's Liberty.

    This Full Head example of the first-year key date is predictably soft on the obverse but shows about as much detail as was ever present on the 1916 dies. The preservation of the coin is astounding, showing almost no perceptible flaws. Original satin luster reveals traces of delicate champagne toning but is otherwise as-struck. The 1916 is rare this fine, and there are only a handful of coins in this grade with a CAC endorsement. This is a coin that Standing Liberty quarter enthusiasts will admire, and series specialists will feverishly compete to acquire. Truly a beautiful coin and a relic from one of the most important design periods in United States Mint history. Population: 19 in 66 (2 in 66+) Full Head, 5 finer. CAC: 5 in 66, 3 finer (6/17).(Registry values: N7079) (NGC ID# 2AMV, PCGS# 5705)

    Weight: 6.25 grams

    Metal: 90% Silver, 10% Copper

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

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    August, 2017
    2nd-6th Wednesday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 22
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,198

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