1842-D $2.50 PCGS AU58 CAC

The 1842-D remains one of the very few quarter eagles of any date or mint that appears to still be unknown in properly graded Uncirculated. This statement can be verified by the fact that PCGS, to date, has still not graded an 1842-D quarter eagle higher than AU58 and just four at this level. This is a well-known coin with an illustrious pedigree (see below). It has a good deal of soft, frosty luster remaining and this is highly unusual for the date as most 1842-D quarter eagles are lackluster; even those grading AU50 and higher. The color is a rich natural yellow-gold with a single obverse toning spot at the juncture of the left field and the bridge of the nose. If you know this date, you know that is is extremely rare with eye appeal and this is probably the prettiest 1842-D quarter eagle that I have seen or sold. It should be noted that there is a mint-made depression on the cheek of Liberty; this is seen on many examples of this date and it does not detract. The last PCGS AU58 1842-D quarter eagle to sell at auction was Bowers and Merena 3/09: 1474 that brought $23,000. An extremely important coin for the specialist.

Ex Heritage 1/03: 4660 ($15,525), Heritage 1999 FUN: 7630 ($23,000), North Georgia collection, Stack's 10/94: 870 ($14,300), James Stack collection.

This is the only AU58 1842-D quarter eagle to be approved by CAC. None have been approved in grades higher than this.

1842-D Small Date $5.00 NGC EF40

Small Date variety. This is the more available of the two varieties of half eagle made at the Dahlonega mint in 1842; the 1842-D Large Date is rare in all grades. This piece has wonderful color with a crescent of electric blue and purple at the left; the reverse shows similar but less intense hues at the right border and outlining the eagle. This color is unquestionably real and it is likely the result of this piece having either been stored in a leather pouch or an old Wayte Raymond-style coin album. The surfaces are fairly abraded as is often seen on 1842-D Small Date half eagles but if you like colorfully toned southern branch mint gold coins I'm willing to bet that you'll overlook these abrasions due to the dramatic color. I'm asking around a 10-15% premium for the color and, for the right collector, this is a going to seem like a real bargain!

1842-D Small Date $5.00 PCGS EF45 CAC

Let's say you want a Dahlonega half eagle and you have a budget of around $3,000. You can buy a washed-out boring 1853-D for around $2,250. Or you can spring for a few hundred dollars more and buy a coin like this that is both a scarcer date and choice and original. Or, as we at DWN like to say, a "coin with character." This is a very choice piece with deep natural green-gold color and nice surfaces. Some lightness of strike around the borders is noted and this is not uncommon for the issue. CAC has approved just four in this grade with one finer. A tough date to find with nice color and surfaces.

1842-D SD $5.00 PCGS VF35 CAC

Small Date variety. An attractive, evenly worn example with nearly enough to detail to grade EF40 but with a few old, well-hidden surface marks keeping this at the Choice VF level. On both sides, the color is a uniform deep green-gold. A scarce date in any grade and a very hard coin to locate with original color and surfaces. This is the only 1842-D Small Date half eagle in any grade below EF40 to have been approved by CAC.