US Coins

Market Analysis: Two nice Capped Bust gold $2.50 coins

A 1797 Capped Bust, Heraldic Eagle $2.50 quarter eagle graded AU-55 sold for $111,000 while a similarly graded 1806/5 quarter eagle with a green CAC sticker brought $93,000.

Images courtesy of Ira & Larry Goldberg Auctioneers.

Among the attractive Capped Bust, Heraldic Eagle gold $2.50 quarter eagles in Ira and Larry Goldberg’s June 18 Pre-Long Beach sale was a 1797 example graded by Professional Coin Grading Service as About Uncirculated 55 that sold for $111,000 and an 1806/5 quarter eagle graded AU-55 with a Certified Acceptance Corp. green sticker that realized $93,000.

The former shows a significant die crack in the right obverse field and is one of perhaps 25 known of the BD-1 variety, as cataloged by Harry W. Bass Jr. and John Dannreuther. The Goldbergs observe, “A noteworthy fact is the obverse has 13 stars while the reverse has 16 stars, reflecting the Mint’s changing policy of adding stars as new states joined the Union, which halted after 16 stars, and reverted to the original 13 colonies to be representative of all the future states.”

On the latter offering, of which around 35 examples of the BD-2 variety are estimated to survive, Philadelphia Mint workers took an existing 1805-dated die, reheated it, punched a 6 over the last digit, reheated it (again), and put it into production. Why the U.S. Mint just didn’t strike more 1805-dated $2.50s that year with the existing dies is unknown, but the resulting variety is a marvel.

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