1893-O $5.00 PCGS MS62

Unlike most of the MS62 examples of this date that I have handled, this piece is not riddled with abrasions on the surfaces. It is choice and original with soft, satiny luster covered by gentle green-gold hues. The 1893-O is the most available of the three With Motto half eagles and it is the only one that can be found, from time to time, in MS62 to MS63 grades. At half the price of an MS63, I like the value that this piece affords.

1854-C $2.50 PCGS EF40 CAC

Attractive deep orange-gold color is contrasted by russet highlights on the portrait. This coin has the body of an EF45 to AU50 but it has been conservatively graded by PCGS on account of a weak strike on the reverse; curiously, the obverse is better detailed than usual for the date. The 1854-C is scarce in all grades with a mintage of just 7,295. I think this coin is an amazing value as a comparable 1847-C or 1858-C (dates that are three times more available in all grades) would sell for just a few hundred dollars less.

This is the only example of this date approved by CAC in this grade; six finer have been approved as well.

1847-C $2.50 PCGS EF40 CAC

The 1847-C is to Charlotte quarter eagles as the 1881-S is to Morgan dollars: an issue that is plentiful and well made. But unlike the San Francisco cartwheel, the 1847-C is not easy to find with great eye appeal. And this choice, totally original example is one of the more pleasing affordable Charlotte quarter eagles of any date that you are likely to find. It shows deep green-gold hues on both sides and there is a ton of dirt in the protected areas as you would expect on a coin of this era with original surfaces. Other than a few minor ticks on the obverse, there is essentially nothing "wrong" with this coin and I strongly recommend it to the beginning collector of Charlotte gold or branch mint gold in general.

1875-CC $20.00 PCGS MS60

Generally speaking a CC double eagle graded MS60 is going to have surfaces that are a total mess. This example happens to be surprisingly clean for the grade and has better eye appeal than others I have seen in MS61 holders. The surfaces are very frosty and show nice orange-gold color that is a bit more intense on the reverse than on the obverse. The 1875-CC is by far the most available Type Two double eagle from this mint and, as such, it makes an ideal type coin for the collector who seeks a solitary higher quality piece.

1874 $2.50 PCGS MS63 CAC

Only 3,920 business strikes were made but this date is a bit more available in circulated grades than one might expect. It is rare in the lower Uncirculated grades, very rare in MS63 and extremely rare above this. A small number of really nice 1874 quarter eagles are known (in the MS63 to MS64 range) and since these pieces have basically similar looks, I would presume that a small hoard (four to six?) existed at one time. This is amongst the finest known with lovely rich yellow-gold color overlaid with light lemon splashes. There are a few faint copper spots on the obverse and more on the reverse (below the denomination and at the right wing tip). There are no APR's for PCGS MS63's of this date since February 2001 when an inferior example brought $5,290. In the last decade, there are four PCGS MS64 APR's, ranging from a low of $8,051 to a high of $9,258. This coin is a nice combination of high grade and low mintage.

This is the sole example in this grade approved by CAC with none finer.


1850 $20.00 NGC AU55 CAC

This numismatically significant issue is one of the few Type One double eagles that has "cross-collector" appeal. In other words, it is an issue that a collector who is not a typical buyer of Type Ones will still want a nice 1850 due to its status as the first collectable year of issue for this denomination. This specific example is extremely pleasing for the grade with medium natural yellowish-green gold color atop satiny surfaces. The obverse is clean and quite choice; the reverse shows a few small scattered marks that limit the grade. AU55 is sort of a "sweet spot" for this issue as lower grade pieces might not have good eye appeal while higher grade pieces are very expensive.

CAC has approved ten in this grade with fifteen finer.

1856 $20.00 NGC EF45 CAC

Along with the 1855, the 1856 is one of my favorite "sleeper" dates in the Type One double eagle series. It is still not priced at a huge premium over a common issue like the 1851 or 1852 but, as even a cursory glimpse at population figures will show, it is many times scarcer than these dates. This example is choice and original with rich, even orange-gold color that is accentuated by some deeper colors at the left obverse and correspoding reverse.

This is one of two approved by CAC in this grade with eleven finer.