22 Nov 2019

The Draped Bust Quarter | Basic info

Coins-United States | user_93026

The draped bust quarter | basic infoThe US draped bust quarter is one of the most classic pieces in US coinage. Struck in .8924 silver from the years 1796 to 1807, these quarters camein two major varieties; the small eagle (1796 only) and the large eagle (1804-1807). With a very small total mintage of 561,045 (The US produced 1,390,114,000 quarters in 2018 alone) the draped bust quarter has maintained its place as a heavily sought after yet beautiful design. The design is generally accepted to be done by Robert Scot.The draped bust quarter consists of an obverse design featuring lady Liberty, with her hair flowing over her shoulder. In the 1796 type there are 15 stars present, while on the 1804-1807 types there are only 13 stars, as the coin was redesigned to only include the original thirteen states. On the reverse of the type 1 there is a rather skinny looking eagle standing on clouds surrounded by a wreath. Both versions have the wording "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" on the reverse, however on the type two (1804-1807) the eagle is much bulkier and has a union shield for a body. It is carrying eight arrows in one claw and an olive branch in the other, much like its modern counterpart minted from 1932-1999. Above the large eagle resides thirteen stars contained by a row of clouds. Under the eagle is a large "25 C."With that said, they tend to sell for a demanding price, even in lower grades. Not many draped bust quarters survived in higher grades. They were minted in a period of economic and political trouble in a young, bucolic United States. The fact that most collectors of the time preferred coins of ancient Rome and Greece didn't care much for "modern" coinage did not help at all either. Mostly in specific hoards and collections , like the Pogue collection, did these coins survive in uncirculated grades. For the 1796 variety, PCGS estimates that only 10% survived circulation, and that only a handful of their 6,146 mintage still exists in original proof like condition, which will usually cost the same as a decent house.My one and only draped bust quarter (pictured) is an 1805 Browning-4 with F details (holed). While it does have a hole I was able to acquire it for a low price, especially for the detail that is on the coin; and today it remains one of my most cherished coins. The draped bust quarter is a truly remarkable coin not only for its rarity but also for its beautiful design and overall eye appeal in any condition.

19 Nov 2019


Coins-United States | Longstrider

My next blog is about a "normal" Peace Dollar VAM, in that any VAM is normal. I am using the word "normal" to mean a VAM that is not, currently, in any Top 50, Elite 30 or any other additional designation. This VAM is a 1923 VAM 1W. This variety is also known as the Die Break Hair Rear. Some of the readers here may know that I am working on collecting a Top 50 and Elite 30 sets. This is neither. I found this specimen while looking through some of the aforementioned sets. I thought it is a beautiful coin and does exhibit a nice die break. So here it is.

16 Nov 2019

The Columbian Exposition

Coins-United States | user_1727

Numismatics and history are deeply interconnected. From the earliest coinage to modern commemoratives, coins tell the story of triumph, conquest and tragedy throughout history. They tell the story of kings, queens and presidents and, exploration and innovation. This series looks at the history of the Modern World through the lense of 20 coins.

11 Nov 2019

2017S Proof Silver Eagle Mint Error

Coins-United States | user_14581

Ladies and Gentlemen I present to you the 2017S Mint Error, Struck Thru Obverse, Proof Silver Eagle, PF 69 DCAM... "The Moon Eagle".I initially won the Proof Eagle through a major Numismatic Auction House in 2018. I placed the bid on a Wednesday/Thursday because I noticed the fields looked extra black with the devices frosty white. Just an immaculate coin. The auction would end on Sunday and that Saturday evening prior I decided to look at the picture enlarged and that is when I noticed the mark above Lady Liberty. I thought, "Not a milk spot?". I noticed while enlarged the top line of E had a raised reversed "C" curving down and figured it could be a blemish of debri on the coin inside the slab, or possibly some sticker on top if the slab. When I won the auction and received the coin I instantly said, "That is no milk spot or sticker anywhere".I did take it to a couple of dealers around town and showed them and they said it was interesting but would not consider it an error. This past January at the FUN Show here in town I took it to Fred Weinberg. One, I could not believe I was sitting down talking to Mr.Error himself and 2) "How does he get these extraordinary errors"? My Lord, sorry I am back in track. I showed him the coin (mind you at this point it is just graded PF69DCAM Limited Edition First Strike by PCGS) and he said he believed it to be a Struck Thru. However, he said he had never seen one like this ever. He couldn't decipher what caused it and said the challenge for me is to find coin number 2, he also said to have it graded and see if it comes back a Mint Error. I then went to Jason from Orlando Coin Exchange and he liked it instantly and after careful review of the coin he looked up and said, "From this point on it will be called The Moon Eagle". He advised me to also get it graded. He stated he believed it to be a Mint Error but that it has to be authenticated as such.I sent in the submission to PCGS and it is Official. I read the Cherrypickers Guide and try when I can to find those overlooked varieties or errors, but for an accidental Cherry pick? This could not be any better. I have been honored to show the pictures to Mr. Bob Mellor and speak to him. He reiterated exactly what Fred Weinberg said and it is to find coin number 2. The Hunt Is On! To be continued...

08 Nov 2019

American Imperialism and Territorial Coinage

Coins-United States | user_1727

Numismatics and history are very closely connected. From the earliest coinage to modern commemoratives, coins tell the story of triumph, conquest and tragedy throughout history. They tell the story of kings and of revolutions, exploration and innovation. This series looks at the history of the Modern World through the lense of 20 coins.

22 Oct 2019


Coins-United States | Longstrider

Today I have a new, to me, Top 50 Peace Dollar VAM to share with you. Below you will see my example of a 1926-S VAM 4A. This is another Top 50 Peace Dollar VAM. The 4A incorporates the VAM 4 as well as some additional features I will describe. It is a "stand alone" VAM.

09 Oct 2019


Coins-United States | Longstrider

The other day I was so happy for myself. I found my first Peace Dollar VAM. Not one that is already slabbed. One I found “in the wild”. A little back story is in order. As some of you know I am in a hunt to complete a Peace Dollar Top 50 and an Elite 30 sets. I am a huge fan of Peace Dollar VAMs. I love the series, the artist, the model and the history. Let’s not forget I am a VAM nut.


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