1802/'1' Capped Bust Right Quarter Eagle. BD-1. Rarity-4. Die State a/b. Spike Shield. AU-58 (PCGS).
Splendid AU 1802 BD-1 Quarter Eagle
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Die Variety: The 1802 quarter eagle obverse die was long considered to be an overdate with an underlying 1 below the 2. Later research has found that the 2 is defective, with a line at the upper left knob to the neck of that digit, giving the appearance of an overdate. The obverse stars are arranged 8 X 5, which required the engraver to place Liberty's head higher in the die and push the letters in LIBERTY over to the right of her cap, also allowing for more space to place the date below her bust. For the reverse the short neck eagle hub was used as introduced in 1798 for the duration of this design. On this variety the engraver slipped, gouging a long mark into the die from the upper left of the shield into the eagle's wing. This die is known as the "Spike Shield" variety. A leaf is also firmly attached to the I in AMERICA.
Die State: This is die state a/b. There is a fine or die line connecting the first A of AMERICA to the eagle's wing. As such this is an early die state for this die pairing, struck prior to when the dies clashed or the later cracks develop.
Estimated mintage for the variety: 1,250 to 2,000 coins estimated of the 3,035 pieces struck.
Estimated surviving population: 90 to 120 coins.
Strike: Firmly struck on most of the devices and lettering, with a hint of softness noted at the center of the obverse and central reverse, common to this series. Furthermore, the dentils and raised lip on the coin are irregular, as seen on the plate coin from the Bass Collection and others of this scarce issue. Examples of BD-1 often show certain areas sharp on the rim but with other areas softly impressed.
Surfaces: A handsome coin for the variety specialist or date collector who is seeking a high grade, appealing example.
Commentary: A single obverse die was used to strike all 1802 quarter eagles, and this die was paired with three different reverse dies. It is notable that each of the three 1802 reverse dies were also used to strike dimes.
Q. David Bowers: This lovely high-grade example will nicely illustrate the variety in any advanced collection.
PCGS# 7650. NGC ID: 25F6.
Pedigree: From the Dr. James A. Ferrendelli Collection. Earlier from Bowers and Merena, February 1986.
PCGS Population: 10; 17 finer (Mint State-63 finest) for the date.
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