To view more detailed information on the collection click hereDie Variety: BD-1. The 1797 obverse die is always found well-struck despite the ever present die crack along the right side. The reverse die is the final appearance of the "long necked" eagle created by John Smith Gardner's master hub. Interestingly, this exact reverse die was also used to strike the 1798/7 JR-1 dimes, which were designed to be the same diameter and to share a common reverse design. Die State: All known examples of this obverse die exhibit the die crack through the Y down to the final two stars. One known example exists where this piece formed a very late retained or full cud, with no definition to the right of the crack, and significant weakness on AMER on the reverse in the area opposite, as there was not enough striking pressure to bring these letters up as a direct result of the failure of the obverse die. The obverse die crack extends down through the Y of LIBERTY to the rim below the final star.Mintage: 427 coins.Estimated surviving population: 20 to 30 coins.Strike: The strike is sharp on the obverse and most of the reverse, save for a trace of softness within the vertical shield lines, but sharp on the stars, letters, and even the dentils. The edge reeding is rather sharp where visible within the edge view holder.Surfaces: Excellent surfaces and eye appeal define this beautiful early quarter eagle. The surfaces are a blend of bright yellow gold with deeper orange-gold on the high points of the devices. There are tinges of crimson toning in the protected areas of the fields, particularly around the reverse periphery.Commentary: One of the enjoyable activities in numismatics is noticing something unusual and connecting it to something similar. In the case of the 1797 quarter eagle it is unusual that all known examples show a significant die crack on the obverse, down from the Y of LIBERTY to the edge below the last star. Coincidentally, a similar die crack is also found on all the known 1797 JR-1, 16 star dimes. On the otherwise unrelated 1797 dimes the crack is located from the tip of the bust, then across the tops of the date to the edge through the first two stars.Q. David Bowers: The 1797 quarter eagle is one of the rarest dates in the American gold series. Although in the mid-19th century the 1797 was widely recognized as a classic, in modern times the issue has been more or less overlooked -- no doubt because there are few if any high grades of so-called "investment quality" to entice the well-moneyed but only superficially knowledgeable buyer. Typical grades seen for the 1797 are VF or EF, rarely finer. At the AU level the 1797 is truly a formidable rarity. In a word, here is an exciting coin! There will be lots of excitement when this and other Ferrendelli Collection early quarter eagles cross the block.John W. Dannreuther: This 18th century rarity has been popular with collectors and the magical pre-1800 date only adds to its desirability. There are more half eagles and eagles known for this year, although there are seven half eagle and four eagle varieties, so maybe this is not a fair comparison to the single variety of this quarter eagle. Today's collectors have begun to appreciate rarity again, so the price that this example brings will not surprise those numismatists that have been paying attention to trends.