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LIBERTY HEAD QUARTER EAGLES (1840-1907)
Quarter Eagle
Gobrecht's Liberty Head Quarter Eagle (1840-1907): Christian Gobrecht designed the Liberty Head Quarter Eagles. It was minted from 1840 to 1907, the longest span of any coinage series without any major design modification. In that period of time 11,921,171 Liberty Head Quarter Eagles were minted.

Gobrecht used the coronet motif for his Liberty Head Quarter Eagle design. It shows a profile of Liberty facing left. Her hair is tied in the back with beads as two curls flow down her neck. On the coronet the word LIBERTY is inscribed. She is surrounded by thirteen six-pointed stars and the date, which is below the truncation. At the periphery of the Liberty Head Quarter Eagle are dentils on both sides of the coin. The reverse of the Liberty Head Quarter Eagle shows a heraldic eagle with wings outstretched looking to the left. In its talons it holds the olive branch and arrows, symbols of peace and preparedness. The inscription UNITED STATES OF AMERICA is in an arc around the eagle, interrupted by the wing tips. The denomination written as 2 ½ D. is below, separated from the inscription by dots.

In 1859 James Longacre, who was now the Mint Chief Engraver, slightly modified the reverse by making the arrowheads smaller and further apart; however, in San Francisco the old reverse was used until 1867. In 1866 it was mandated that the motto IN GOD WE TRUST be added to all coinage large enough to accommodate it. It was decided that the quarter eagle was too small for this modification.

As an anti-counterfeiting device, these coins were completely hubbed except for the date and mint mark. The dates were entered by hand. In 1873 a new 3 was used because the old one was the “closed 3” and was easily mistaken for an 8.

In 1848 gold came from California to Philadelphia to make medals for Generals Zachary Taylor and Winfield Scott. Mint Director Patterson ordered that the coins from the excess of this gold deposit be struck with the abbreviation CAL. on the reverse above the eagle. Forgeries have been made by privately punching CAL into regular 1848’s, and authentication is strongly recommended. (All USRCI coins are authenticated by one of the major grading services.)

Despite the fact that the coin was not custom designed to mark the event, many numismatists consider the 1848 CAL. to be the United States’ first commemorative coin. It commemorates the first shipment of gold from California to the United States Mint, and one could argue that it is a separate subtype within the quarter eagle series.

Mintages for the Liberty Head Quarter Eagle range from a high of 1,404,668 in 1853 to a low of 246 the next year in San Francisco. This low mintage took place because of a shortage of the acids necessary to separate silver from the gold ore. The meager supply of acid was used for the double eagles of that year. Authentication is highly recommended for any 1854-S coins. The same is true for any 1841 Philadelphia coins, which have an unknown mintage.

Specifications:
Edge: Reeded
Weight: 4.18 grams (64.5 grains) (.1344 troy ounces)
Diameter: 18 millimeters
Composition: 90% gold, 10% copper
Gold Content: 3.762 grams (58.049 grains) (.1209 troy ounces)

DATE NOTES
1840 Quarter Eagle 1840 Quarter Eagle - The Philadelphia Mint produced the first Quarter Eagles of Christian Gobrecht’s design in 1840. Only 2 proofs known to exist today....More >>>
1840-C Quarter Eagle 1840-C Quarter Eagle: The 1840-C Quarter Eagle has the second lowest mintage of all four issues of 1840...More >>>
1840-D Quarter Eagle 1840-D Quarter Eagle - Low mintage date, by far the rarest of the four quarter eagle issues of 1840 is that of the Dahlonega Mint. Its mintage...More >>>
1840-O Quarter Eagle 1840-O Quarter Eagle - Unlike many other issues the highest quarter eagle mintage in 1840 was archived at the New Orleans mint...More >>>
1841 Quarter Eagle 1841 Quarter Eagle - The first of several Proof-only dates for the quarter eagle denomination, it is believed that no business strike. Only 4 proofs known to exist today...More >>>
1841-C Quarter Eagle Except for center of obverse, usually well struck; exceedingly rare in Mint State.
1841-D Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, usually well struck; rare in all grades, prohibitively rare in Mint State.
1842 Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, only 50 to 60 known in all grades; only 2 certified in Mint State.
1842-C Quarter Eagle Low mintage coin, usually poorly struck. Die break on reverse from tip of left wing to rim; rare in all grades, prohibitively rare in Mint State.
1842-D Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, less than 100 known in all grades; rare in all grades, only 4 certified in Mint State; often found with roughness on Liberty’s neck. Look for repunching on date.
1842-O Quarter Eagle Low mintage for New Orleans; often weakly struck in centers, exceedingly rare in Mint State.
1843 Quarter Eagle Usually well struck, last two digits larger than others, exceedingly rare in Mint State. 7 proofs have been certified by both services.
1843-C Quarter Eagle These are found with either a Small Date and a Crosslet 4 or a Large Date and a Plain 4, with the former being very rare with only 70 to 80 known in all grades, and prohibitively rare in Mint State, usually well struck with sharp wire rim on obverse. Large Date only 150 to 200 known, exceedingly rare above MS61, most are weak on center of obverse.
1843-D Quarter Eagle These all have a Small Date with a Crosslet 4 and small and large mintmark, which is rarer; both prohibitively rare above MS61.
1843-O Quarter Eagle These are found with either a Small Date and a Crosslet 4 or a Large Date and a Plain 4, with the latter being the rarer of the two varieties. Exceedingly rare above MS62.
1844 Quarter Eagle Low mintage coin; less than 100 known in all grades. Prohibitively rare in Mint State, none certified higher than MS62. Only 1 proof has been certified.
1844-C Quarter Eagle Rare in all grades, exceedingly rare in Mint State; always poorly struck especially feather details on reverse.
1844-D Quarter Eagle Usually poorly struck in center of obverse, rare in Mint Sate.
1845 Quarter Eagle Most available Philadelphia quarter eagle issue of the decade; very rare above MS63. Only 4 or 5 proofs known to exist today.
1845-D Quarter Eagle Usually found well struck with clashed dies showing on eagle’s neck; exceedingly rare in Mint State.
1845-O Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, 80 to 100 known in all grades, often seen with die defect to right of Liberty’s neck, major rarity in Mint State.
1846 Quarter Eagle Usually found well struck, last digit bolder than others, exceedingly rare above MS61. Only 4 or 5 proofs known to exist.
1846-C Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, die rust on obverse and clash marks common, exceedingly rare in Mint State.
1846-D Quarter Eagle Exceedingly rare in Mint State grades, look for the D/D mintmark variety.
1846-O Quarter Eagle Usually with weak strike, mintmark is large, last two digits are tilted and often repunched, exceedingly rare above MS61.
1847 Quarter Eagle Exceedingly rare in Mint State, date too large, especially the 7, usually weakly struck on eagle’s left leg.
1847-C Quarter Eagle Highest Charlotte quarter eagle mintage, usually well struck except for right leg, exceedingly rare above MS62.
1847-D Quarter Eagle Usually well struck, repunched date, exceedingly rare above MS62.
1847-O Quarter Eagle Poorly struck in centers, look for recut date, exceedingly rare above MS62.
1848 Quarter Eagle NO CAL Left leg often weak, exceedingly rare above MS62.
1848 Quarter Eagle CAL Low mintage date/variety, considered by many to be 1st commemorative coin, included in 100 Greatest US Coins, exceedingly rare in Mint State.
1848-C Quarter Eagle Usually weak in centers, from bulged dies, very rare in Mint State, none certified higher than MS62.
1848-D Quarter Eagle Usually well struck with die clashing in centers, very rare in Mint State, none certified higher than MS63.
1849 Quarter Eagle Usually well struck, often with recut date, very rare in Mint State, none certified higher than MS63.
1849-C Quarter Eagle Scarce in all grades, excessively rare in Mint State, mintmark embedded in eagle.
1849-D Quarter Eagle Usually with weak reverse dentils, prohibitively rare in Mint State, none certified higher than MS62.
1850 Quarter Eagle Usually seen VF to AU, rare above MS62, 2 certified MS67.
1850-C Quarter Eagle Usually with weak centers and left leg, often from clashed dies, exceedingly rare in Mint State, none certified higher than a single MS63.
1850-D Quarter Eagle Usually seen XF to AU, exceedingly rare in Mint State, none certified higher than a single MS63.
1850-O Quarter Eagle Always poorly struck especially in centers, exceedingly rare in Mint State.
1851 Quarter Eagle Common in low grades, scarce in Gem condition.
1851-C Quarter Eagle Most in XF to AU, striking varies, sometimes seen with obverse die scratches on Liberty’s face, mintmark embedded, exceedingly rare in Mint State.
1851-D Quarter Eagle Usually well struck, most VF to AU, scarce in all grades, prohibitively rare in Mint State.
1851-O Quarter Eagle Common in circulated grades, rare above MS61, look for repunched date on all four digits.
1852 Quarter Eagle Common date, rare in Gem and above, usually well struck except for eagle’s leg and neck.
1852-C Quarter Eagle Usually found weakly struck from clashed dies and rough planchets, very rare in all grades, prohibitively rare in Mint State.
1852-D Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, exceedingly rare in all grades, prohibitively rare in Mint State.
1852-O Quarter Eagle Often softly struck on centers and wing tips, look for large O, exceedingly rare above MS61.
1853 Quarter Eagle High mintage date, usually well struck, rare in Gem and above condition.
1853-D Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, less than 100 known, exceedingly rare in all grades, usually weakly struck with weak dentils, a few have DPL surfaces, prohibitively rare in Mint State.
1854 Quarter Eagle Usually available in circulated condition; rare above MS62.
1854-C Quarter Eagle Usually weakly struck reverse, rare in all grades, extremely rare in Mint State, highest grade MS63 - one example.
1854-D Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, only 70 to 90 known in all grades, prohibitively rare in Mint State, highest certified - 1 MS64.
1854-O Quarter Eagle Easy to find in circulated grades, often weakly struck at date, sometimes prooflike, very rare in Mint State.
1854-S Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, only11 to 12 known in all grades, one of the rarest U.S. regular issued coins. Listed in 100 Greatest U.S. Coins. One AU50 highest certified grade.
1855 Quarter Eagle Easy to find in circulated grades, usually well struck except for eagle’s left leg; rare in Gem condition.
1855-C Quarter Eagle Low mintage date and lowest of series from Charlotte. Most are weakly struck on poor quality planchets, Mint State exceedingly rare.
1855-D Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, usually weakly struck on centers. Only 50 to 60 known in all grades. Exceedingly rare in all grades, prohibitively rare in Mint State.
1856 Quarter Eagle Easy to find in circulated grades, rare in Gem and above condition. Only 3 proofs have been certified.
1856-C Quarter Eagle Usually weakly struck on centers on rough planchets, rare in all grades, exceedingly rare in Mint State.
1856-D Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, only 45 to 55 known in all grades. Usually weakly struck with planchet flaws, prohibitively rare in all grades, highest certified MS61.
1856-O Quarter Eagle Available in circulated grades, exceedingly rare in Mint State, finest certified MS62.
1856-S Quarter Eagle Usually well struck with weakness in eagle’s left leg, available in circulated grades, exceedingly rare in Mint State, finest certified MS67.
1857 Quarter Eagle Usually available in circulated and lower Mint State grades, rare in Gem and above condition. Only 2 proofs known today.
1857-D Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, usually well struck, exceedingly rare in Mint State.
1857-O Quarter Eagle Last year for type at New Orleans Mint, usually well struck, exceedingly rare above MS61.
1857-S Quarter Eagle Usually well struck, often with clashed dies, exceedingly rare above MS61.
1858 Quarter Eagle Scarce in all grades, exceedingly rare above MS63. Only 4 or 5 proofs known today.
1858-C Quarter Eagle Often poorly made with planchet adjustment marks on obverse, rare in lower Mint State grades, none certified above MS63.
1859 Quarter Eagle 1859 Quarter Eagle Proof Quarter Eagle Found with Old and New Reverse, which has smaller arrowheads and letters. Available in lower uncirculated grades, exceedingly rare above MS63. Only 7 proofs have been certified.
1859-D Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, last quarter eagle from Dahlonega. Usually well struck, exceedingly rare in Mint State, highest certified MS62.
1859-S Quarter Eagle Always found with Old Reverse (large letters and arrowheads), mintmark often filled. Rare in all grades, exceedingly rare in Mint State.
1860 Quarter Eagle 1860 Quarter Eagle Proof Quarter Eagle Found with Old and New Reverse, which is more common. Exceedingly rare in Mint State. Only 14 to 16 proofs known today.
1860-C Quarter Eagle Last issue of type from Charlotte Mint. Usually weakly struck on poor planchets, exceedingly rare in Mint State.
1860-S Quarter Eagle Rare in all conditions, exceedingly rare in Mint State, none certified higher than MS64.
1861 Quarter Eagle 1861 Quarter Eagle Proof Quarter Eagle, 1861 Civil War Date Quater Eagle NGC AU58CAC Seen with both Old and New Reverse. Old Reverse very rare, especially in Mint State. New Reverse rare above MS64. Only 12 to 15 proofs known today.
1861-S Quarter Eagle Available in circulated condition, prohibitively rare in Uncirculated grades, none certified above MS62.
1862 Quarter Eagle Usually well struck with clashed dies, rare above MS62; look for the 1862/1 overdate, only 50 to 60 known in all grades. Only 12 to 15 proofs known today.
1862-S Quarter Eagle Less than 100 known in all grades, prohibitively rare in Mint State, only 6 certified by both grading services.
1863 Quarter Eagle Only proofs were struck in this year, 18 to 22 are known today.
1863-S Quarter Eagle Only 70 to 80 known in all grades, exceedingly rare in Mint State, none certified in Gem condition.
1864 Quarter Eagle 1864 Quarter Eagle Proof Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, only 18 to 22 known in all grades, prohibitively rare in Mint State. Only 25 to 30 proofs known today.
1865 Quarter Eagle 1865 Quarter Eagle Proof Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, only 35 to 40 known in all grades, only 1 certified in Mint State. Only 15 to 18 proofs known today.
1865-S Quarter Eagle Available in uncirculated grades, prohibitively rare in Mint State, none certified in Gem or finer grades.
1866 Quarter Eagle 1866 Quarter Eagle Proof Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, only 60 to 75 known in all grades, often weakly struck, prohibitively rare in Uncirculated grades. Only 20 to 22 proofs known today.
1866-S Quarter Eagle Available in circulated grades, exceedingly rare in Mint State, finest certified – 1 in MS63.
1867 Quarter Eagle 1867 Quarter Eagle Proof Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, high grade specimens often with prooflike surfaces, exceedingly rare in Mint State. Only 25 proofs known today.
1867-S Quarter Eagle Often weakly struck centers with clashed dies, exceedingly rare above MS61.
1868 Quarter Eagle 1868 Quarter Eagle Proof Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, often with prooflike surfaces, exceedingly rare above MS61. Only 16 to 20 proofs known today.
1868-S Quarter Eagle Can be found in circulated condition, rare above MS61. None certified in Gem grade or higher.
1869 Quarter Eagle 1869 Quarter Eagle Proof Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, sometimes prooflike, very rare in Mint State, none certified higher than MS63. Only 16 to 20 proofs known today.
1869-S Quarter Eagle Usually found in circulated condition, rare in Mint State especially above MS61.
1870 Quarter Eagle 1870 Quarter Eagle Proof Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, exceedingly rare in Mint State. Only 12 to 15 proofs known today.
1870-S Quarter Eagle Usually poorly struck, exceedingly rare in Mint State.
1871 Quarter Eagle 1871 Quarter Eagle Proof Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, rare in Mint State. Only 12 to 15 proofs known today.
1871-S Quarter Eagle Usually poorly struck in centers, rare in Mint State.
1872 Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, exceedingly rare in Mint State, none in Gem condition certified. Only 18 to 22 proofs known today.
1872-S Quarter Eagle Usually found in circulated condition, rare in Mint State.
1873 Quarter Eagle Found with Open and Closed 3's in the date, often with die clash marks, rare in Gem and above grades. Only 16 to 20 proofs known today.
1873-S Quarter Eagle Available in uncirculated grades, rare in Mint State, especially rare above MS63.
1874 Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, scarce in all grades, especially rare above MS 62. Only 12 to 14 proofs known today.
1875 Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, only 40 to 50 known in all grades with prooflike surfaces, prohibitively rare in Mint State. Only 12 to 15 proofs known today.
1875-S Quarter Eagle Scarce in all grades, exceedingly rare above MS61. There is extra demand because of low mintage of Philadelphia issues.
1876 Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, rare in Mint State grades, sometimes prooflike and poorly struck. Only 25 to 30 proofs known today.
1876-S Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, last year for old-style hub; die defect on Liberty’s jaw, none certified above MS63.
1877 Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, mostly available in AU grades, rare above MS62. Only 12 to 14 proofs known today.
1877-S Quarter Eagle Modified reverse hub with small letters, eagle, and mintmark; available in AU and lower Mint State grades, rare above MS63.
1878 Quarter Eagle Common date in grades up to MS64; rare in MS66 and above. Only 10 to 12 proofs known today.
1878-S Quarter Eagle New reverse hub with smaller letters, arrowheads, and claws; Exceedingly rare in Gem grade and above.
1879 Quarter Eagle Usually well struck with lightly clashed dies; common in AU and lower Mint State grades; rare above MS65. Only 18 to 22 proofs known today.
1879-S Quarter Eagle Last gold quarter eagle at San Francisco Mint. Available in AU grades, rare in all Mint State grades, especially above MS62.
1880 Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, usually well struck with prooflike surfaces; available in lower Mint State grades, rare above MS62. 25 proof known today.
1881 Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, less than 100 known in all grades, often with prooflike surfaces; exceedingly rare in Mint State, only 2 specimens certified above MS62. Only 30 to 35 proofs known today.
1882 Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, often with deep mirrored prooflike strikes, rare in Gem and above condition. Only 35 to 45 proofs known today.
1883 Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, rare in all grades especially above MS61. Only 40 to 50 proofs known today.
1884 Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, rare above MS62. Only 35 to 45 proofs known today.
1885 Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, exceedingly rare in Mint State grades. Only 35 to 45 proofs known today.
1886 Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, exceedingly rare above MS63. Only 35 to 45 proofs known today.
1887 Quarter Eagle Scarce in all grades, prohibitively rare in Gem and above grades. 50 proofs known today.
1888 Quarter Eagle Available in Mint State, exceedingly rare above MS65. 50 proofs known today.
1889 Quarter Eagle Often found weakly struck from clashed dies; very rare above MS64. 35 proofs known today.
1890 Quarter Eagle Most found in AU and low Mint State grades; rare above MS64. Only 50 to 60 proofs known today.
1891 Quarter Eagle Often well struck with prooflike surfaces, rare above MS64. 40 proofs known today.
1892 Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, rare in Gem and above grades. Only 50 to 75 proofs known today.
1893 Quarter Eagle Often well struck, sometimes with light copper stains; easy to find in Mint State. Only 50 to 75 proofs known today.
1894 Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, very rare above MS64. Only 60 to 80 proofs known today.
1895 Quarter Eagle Low mintage date, last mintage of quarter eagles below 10,000; usually well struck except some weak at dentils; usually available in Mint State. Only 60 to 80 proofs known today.
1896 Quarter Eagle Usually well struck; available in Mint State, rare above MS66. Only 60 to 80 proofs known today.
1897 Quarter Eagle Often available in Mint State, 2 certified in MS68. Usually considered a type coin in proof.
1898 Quarter Eagle Usually well struck, sometimes with copper stains; available in grades up to MS67. About 100 proofs known today.
1899 Quarter Eagle Common in Mint State grades, rare above MS66. More than 250 proofs certified representing about 100 coins.
1900 Quarter Eagle Usually well struck, often with copper stains; common date issue available in Mint State grades. More than 100 proofs known today.
1901 Quarter Eagle Common date issue usually seen with good luster, available in Mint State grades. Highest proof mintage of series.
1902 Quarter Eagle Common date issue, usually well struck, often with copper stains, available in Mint State grades. High proof mintage coin.
1903 Quarter Eagle A very common date of the series, easily available in Mint State grades. More than 100 proofs known.
1904 Quarter Eagle Common date issue, often with copper stains, sometimes with prooflike surfaces, easily available in Mint State grades. More than 100 proofs known.
1905 Quarter Eagle Common date issue, usually well struck, sometimes with copper stains, easily available in Mint State grades. More than 100 proofs known.
1906 Quarter Eagle Common date issue, usually well struck, sometimes with copper stains, easily available in Mint State grades. More than 100 proofs known.
1907 Quarter Eagle The most common date of the series, easily available in Mint State grades. About 100 proofs known today.
Quarter Eagles For Sale


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Quarter Eagle - Liberty Head Quarter Eagles

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