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Obverse of 1839-O Quarter Eagle     Reverse of 1839-O Quarter Eagle


1839-O 2 DOLLARS
OR QUARTER EAGLE

PCGS No: 7701

Mintage:

Circulation strikes: 17,781
Proofs: 0

Designer: William Kneass

Diameter: 17.5 millimeters

Metal content:
Gold - 90%
Other - 10%

Weight: 64.5 grains (4.18 grams)

Edge: Reeded

Mintmark: "O" (for New Orleans, Louisiana) above the date

Images courtesy of Ira & Larry Goldberg Coins & Collectibles, Inc.

Varieties (2):
Breen 6152 - High, curved date (see below)
Breen 6153 - Low, straight date (see above)

Significant examples:
PCGS MS-64.  Ex - Bowers & Merena Galleries' "The Cabinet of Lucien M. LaRiviere, Part II", March 15-17, 2001, Lot 45, "Breen-6152, High date, Wide fraction" sold for $24,150.00  Tied for finest certified

PCGS MS-64 (#6581227).  Offered by Hanks & Associates, Inc. for $35,000 in the September 20, 1999 issue of Coin World

Recent appearances:
PCGS MS-63 (illustrated above).  Ex - Ira & Larry Goldberg Coins & Collectibles, Inc.'s "The California Sale", October 2-3, 2000, Lot 668, sold for $13,800.00, where it was described (in part) as follows: "An outstanding, well struck and frosty mint specimen. A late die state with a trio of well defined die cracks on the reverse."

NGC MS-62.  Ex- Heritage Numismatic Auctions, Inc.'s "October 2000 Long Beach Sale" October 5-7, 2000, Lot 7497, illustrated, sold for $6,612.50  From the Violet Bancroft Collection

PCGS MS-62.  Ex - Bowers and Merena Galleries, "The Harry W. Bass, Jr. Collection, Part IV Sale", November 20-21, 2000, Lot 130, illustrated, sold for $9,775.00  Purchased from Don Quiggins, November 4, 1972

NGC MS-62.  Ex - Heritage Numismatic Auctions, Inc.'s, "Summer 2001 Long Beach Signature Sale", May 31-June 2, 2001, Lot 8840, plated, sold for $6,612.50

PCGS AU-58.  Ex - Heritage Numismatic Auctions, Inc.'s "Philadelphia 2000 Signature Sale", August 6-7, 2000, Lot 7156, illustrated, sold for $2,760.00

NGC AU-58.  Ex - Heritage Numismatic Auctions, Inc.'s, "Summer 2001 Long Beach Signature Sale", May 31-June 2, 2001, Lot 8839, plated, sold for $2,070.00  From the Dr. Robert W. Dingle Collection

NGC AU-55.  Ex - Bowers & Merena Galleries' "The Rarities Sale", January 3, 2001, Lot 430, "Breen-6153", illustrated, sold for $1,610.00

EF-45.  Ex - Ira & Larry Goldberg Coins & Collectibles, Inc.'s "The California Sale", October 2-3, 2000, Lot 669, sold for $1,380.00, where it was described (in part) as follows: "Close fraction, large arrows. EF-45. Here is a choice coin of this important obverse mintmark style. The surfaces have minor hairlines, as seen on virtually every gold coin of the era. Sharply struck on all but the uppermost curls on Liberty, and the reverse is bold throughout.  Only two pairs of dies were shipped as the branch mint in New Orleans began striking coins in earnest in 1839. This die pairing is rarer than the open fraction, small arrows variety, and even better this coin is a late die state of the reverse, with a sharp die crack through the N of UNITED, upper leaf point, into the field below the eagle's wing, then a sharp right turn into the eagle's lowest tail feather, out the upper arrowhead to the rim through R in AMERICA. Another die crack is noted from the rim through the left side of the first A in AMERICA, to the eagle's neck, and another short crack from the rim to the left wing of the eagle. Struck with the reverse die rotated 180 degrees from normal, as seen on some of this rare issue."

ANACS Net EF-40, AU Details, Cleaned.  Ex - Heritage Numismatic Auctions, Inc.'s, "Summer 2001 Long Beach Signature Sale", May 31-June 2, 2001, Lot 8838, not plated, unsold

PCGS EF-45 (illustrated below).  Offered on eBay by Winthrop Carner (#1278009109) with a Buy It Now price of $1,050 and a closing date of September 30, 2001

Notes:
The 1839-O Quarter Eagle is generally available in all circulated grades, including About Uncirculated.  True Mint State examples are scarce but not rare.  The finest examples graded by PCGS are 5 MS-64's.

Sources and/or recommended reading:
"Walter Breen's Complete Encyclopedia of U.S. and Colonial Coins" by Walter Breen

"The PCGS Population Report, April 2004" by The Professional Coin Grading Service


Obverse of 1839-O Quarter Eagle     Reverse of 1839-O Quarter Eagle

Images courtesy of Winthrop Carner
Obverse: notice the position of the date relative to the rim
Reverse: stubby arrowhead by the C of AMERICA; thin crack from left leaftip to I of UNITED