Quarter Eagle - With its mintage of 2,600 the
quarter eagle is fundamentally rare in all
grades. All examples show an overdate. A leftover die from
1821 was used to make the coin by punching a 4 over the
1. On later strikings the overdate fades. These dies were
reused as economy measures. Since there were no quarter
eagles struck in 1822 or 1823, and only a few were needed
for 1824, there was no need for new dies to be made. The
reverse die remained in use until 1825 when it cracked.
It is not known if the Mint melted dies itself or simply
sold them for scrap. (Later, in the middle of the century,
some unused dies that were rusted and sold as scrap were
reused privately to make restrikes of several issues. These
are easily identified as coming from discarded dies because
they are extremely rusted and obviously from the scrap heap.)
Robert Scot designed the coin. It shows a capped head of
Liberty facing left. She is encircled with thirteen six-pointed
stars; the date is below the truncation. LIBERTY is inscribed
on the headband of her Phrygian cap. Her hair falls beneath
her cap in luxurious curls. The reverse is similar to the
previous design with a heraldic eagle facing left. Its mouth
is opened and its wings are outstretched. However, its feathers
are more even and less ragged than on the previous type.
A banner above its head bears the motto E PLUIBUS UNUM.
In its claws it holds the arrows and olive branch, symbols
of preparedness and peace. Below the eagle is the denomination
written 2 ½ D. The whole is surrounded by the inscription
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA interrupted by the wing tips. Dentils
are at the periphery of both sides and the edge is reeded.
Only one die pair was used to make the 1824/1
quarter eagle. The left edge of the 1 is over
the left edge of a dentil. The 8 is centered over a dentil.
There are 98 dentils on the coin, which can be used to identify
the variety if another is reported. The reverse is the same
as the 1821 issue. It has large letters. The fraction is
distant with the numerator and denominator away from the
fraction bar. The D of the denomination is large.
In total only 40 to 60 pieces of 1824/1
Quarter Eagle are known in all conditions today.
The coin has an R5 rarity rating. PCGS has certified 28,
in all grades with 10 in Mint State, and NGC has certified
28, 10 in Mint State, and these numbers do not account for
crossovers or resubmissions.
Weight: 4.37 grams
Composition: .9167 gold, .0833 silver and copper
Diameter: approximately 20 millimeters