Quarter eagle

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1796 "Turban Head" or "Capped Bust" quarter eagle (no stars) NNC-US-1796-G$2 1/2 -Turban Head (no stars).jpg
1796 "Turban Head" or "Capped Bust" quarter eagle (no stars)

The quarter eagle was a gold coin issued by the United States with a value of two hundred and fifty cents, or two dollars and fifty cents. It was given its name in the Coinage Act of 1792, as a derivation from the US ten-dollar eagle coin.

Contents

History

1796 "Turban Head" or "Capped Bust" quarter eagle (with stars) NNC-US-1796-G$2 1/2 -Turban Head (stars).jpg
1796 "Turban Head" or "Capped Bust" quarter eagle (with stars)

The quarter eagle denomination was struck at the main mint at Philadelphia (1796–1929), and branch mints in Charlotte (1838–1860), New Orleans (1839–1857 only), Dahlonega (1839–1859), San Francisco (1854–1879), and Denver (1911–1925). Years were skipped at the various mints, with no coins at all made between 1808 and 1821 and 1915 and 1925.[ ambiguous ] The first issues weighed 67.5 grains, fineness .9167, until the weight was modified to 64.5 grains and the fineness changed to .8992 by the Act of June 28, 1834. The Coinage Act of 1837 (January 18, 1837) established a fineness of .900. This means that 1837 and later quarter eagles contain 0.121 Troy Oz. of gold content.

Relatively few coins were struck prior to 1834, owing to their higher gold content (promoting melting for their bullion content). The first issues were struck in 1796. [1] The quarter eagle denomination was officially discontinued in 1933 with the removal of the United States from the Gold Standard, although the last date of issue was 1929.

List of design varieties

Quarter eagle Capped Busts
NNC-US-1808-G$2 1/2 -Capped Bust (left).jpg
NNC-US-1821-G$2 1/2 -Capped Head.jpg
NNC-US-1834-G$2 1/2 -Capped Head (reduced).jpg
1808 "Capped Bust", 1821 "Capped Head", 1834 "Capped Head" (reduced)

Capped Bust

Also known as the "Turban Head", this interpretation of Liberty wearing a turban-like cap was designed by Robert Scot and was minted from 1796 to 1807, for a total of less than 20,000 coins minted. [2]

There were three varieties of this design. First came the Capped Bust facing right variety. There were two variations of this design, no stars on the obverse, and stars on the obverse. The 'no stars' variety was produced only in 1796, replaced with the stars. In 1808, Liberty was redesigned by John Reich, to be wearing more of a traditional cap rather than a turban. This design was minted for 1808 only, but in 1821 the mint reinstated the quarter eagle and it was produced again until 1827, slightly scaled down to 18.5 millimeters from the original 20. In 1829, the quarter eagle was reduced in size again to 18.2 mm, and featured smaller letters and stars. This version of the design was produced until 1834.[ citation needed ]

Classic Head

1835 "Classic Head" quarter eagle NNC-US-1835-G$2 1/2 -Classic Head.jpg
1835 "Classic Head" quarter eagle

The "Classic Head" variety was designed by William Kneass, which featured a traditional maiden with a ribbon binding her long, curly hair. This variety omitted E pluribus unum from the reverse of the coin. In 1840, a coronet and smaller head were designed to conform with the appearance of the larger gold coins, therefore making the Classic Head design obsolete.[ citation needed ]

The Classic Head design was produced from 1834 to 1839. [1]

Liberty Head

The 1848 "Liberty Head" quarter eagle punch-marked "CAL" NNC-US-1848-G$2 1/2 -Liberty Head (CAL).jpg
The 1848 "Liberty Head" quarter eagle punch-marked "CAL"

Also known as the "Coronet Head", the Liberty head was designed to match the styles of the other gold eagles the government was producing. The Liberty Head design was created by Christian Gobrecht and was produced successfully from 1840 to 1907, the most popular of all of the models. Like its predecessor, this variety omitted E Pluribus Unum from the reverse.[ citation needed ]

One notable date is 1848, when 230 ounces of gold were sent to the Secretary of War Marcy by Colonel R.B. Mason, the military governor of California. The gold was turned over to the mint and promptly made into quarter eagles. The distinguishing mark CAL. was punched above the heraldic eagle on the reverse side of the coin. Only 1,389 of these coins were minted and are highly sought after by collectors. [3] There are several specimens with proof-like surfaces and the coins are highly sought after by collectors, often fetching prices from $30000 to 100000 if in good enough condition.[ citation needed ]

Indian Head

1908 Indian Head quarter eagle NNC-US-1908-G$2 1/2 -Indian Head.jpg
1908 Indian Head quarter eagle

The "Indian Head" design and the similar half eagle piece were created by Boston sculptor Bela Lyon Pratt. The coin was a departure from other examples of American coinage because it had no raised edges, instead featuring a design sunk into the planchet. Unfortunately, the public had much distaste for the experimental and unusual design.[ citation needed ] Many feared that the recessed surfaces would collect germs, and others simply thought it was ugly. Numismatists took little interest in the coin. This resulted in few examples in uncirculated condition and the coin slipped into obscurity for many years. Today, however, collectors adore the exotic design and the coin is recognized as part of the creative renaissance of American coinage. The Indian Head design was produced from 1908 to 1929. [1] For sale to collectors it has been frequently counterfeited, so buying uncertified coins can be risky. [4] [ failed verification ]

Commemorative issues

Two of the early United States commemorative coins are quarter eagles. The 1915-S was produced for the Panama-Pacific Exposition in San Francisco.[ citation needed ] The obverse depicts Liberty riding a hippocampus, while the reverse shows an eagle. With only 6,749 sold it is quite valuable.[ citation needed ] Considerably more common is the 1926 issue struck to commemorate the Sesquicentennial Exposition in Philadelphia. A total of 46,019 pieces were sold. The obverse shows Liberty standing on a globe and holding a torch and the United States Declaration of Independence, while the reverse pictures Independence Hall. Since the resumption of commemorative gold coin mintage in 1984 none have been struck in this denomination.[ citation needed ]

Related Research Articles

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<span class="mw-page-title-main">United States Mint</span> Produces circulating coinage for the United States

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<span class="mw-page-title-main">Double eagle</span> Gold $20 coin of the United States

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<span class="mw-page-title-main">Half dime</span> Former United States five-cent silver coin

The half dime, or half disme, was a silver coin, valued at five cents, formerly minted in the United States.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Half cent (United States coin)</span> Copper coin issued by the United States (1793–1857)

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The United States four dollar coin, also officially called a Stella, is a unit of currency equivalent to four United States dollars.

The Seated Liberty portrait designs appeared on most regular-issue silver United States coinage from 1836 through 1891. The denominations which featured the Goddess of Liberty in a Seated Liberty design included the half dime, the dime, the quarter, the half dollar, and until 1873 the silver dollar. Another coin that appeared exclusively in the Seated Liberty design was the twenty cent piece. This coin was produced from 1875 to 1878, and was discontinued because it looked very similar to the quarter. Seated Liberty coinage was minted at the main United States Mint in Philadelphia, as well as the branch mints in New Orleans, San Francisco, and Carson City.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Walking Liberty half dollar</span> 1916–1947 coin issued by the United States Mint

The Walking Liberty half dollar is a silver 50-cent piece or half dollar coin that was issued by the United States Mint from 1916 to 1947; it was designed by Adolph A. Weinman, a well-known sculptor and engraver.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Barber coinage</span> American coins

The Barber coinage consists of a dime, quarter, and half dollar designed by United States Bureau of the Mint Chief Engraver Charles E. Barber. They were minted between 1892 and 1916, though no half dollars were struck in the final year of the series.

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<span class="mw-page-title-main">Half eagle</span> Gold coin issued by the United States face valued at five dollars

The half eagle is a United States coin that was produced for circulation from 1795 to 1929 and in commemorative and bullion coins since 1983. Composed almost entirely of gold, its face value of five dollars is half that of the eagle coin. Production of the half eagle was authorized by the Coinage Act of 1792, and it was the first gold coin minted by the United States.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Draped Bust</span> Former design used on United States coinage

"Draped Bust" was the name given to a design of United States coins. It appeared on much of the regular-issue copper and silver United States coinage, 1796–1807. It was designed by engraver Robert Scot.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Half union</span> Gold coin issued by the United States

The half union was a United States pattern coin with a face value of fifty U.S. Dollars. It is often thought of as one of the most significant and well-known patterns in the history of the U.S. Mint. The basic design, featuring Liberty on the obverse, was slightly modified from the similar $20 "Liberty Head" Double Eagle, which was designed by James B. Longacre and minted from 1849 to 1907.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Coronet large cent</span> One-cent coin issued by the United States Mint from 1816 to 1857

The Coronet large cent was a type of large cent issued by the United States Mint at the Philadelphia Mint from 1816 until 1839.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Classic Head quarter eagle</span>

The Classic Head $2.50 gold coin is an American coin, also called a quarter eagle, minted from 1834-1839. It features Liberty on the obverse and an eagle on the reverse.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Turban Head eagle</span> US ten-dollar gold piece (1795–1804)

The Turban Head eagle, also known as the Capped Bust eagle, was a ten-dollar gold piece, or eagle, struck by the United States Mint from 1795 to 1804. The piece was designed by Robert Scot, and was the first in the eagle series, which continued until the Mint ceased striking gold coins for circulation in 1933. The common name is a misnomer; Liberty does not wear a turban but a cap, believed by some to be a pileus or Phrygian cap : her hair twisting around the headgear makes it resemble a turban.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Indian Head gold pieces</span> United States 20th-century gold coins

The Indian Head gold pieces or Pratt-Bigelow gold coins were two separate coin series, identical in design, struck by the United States Mint: a two-and-a-half-dollar piece, or quarter eagle, and a five-dollar coin, or half eagle. The quarter eagle was struck from 1908 to 1915 and from 1925–1929. The half eagle was struck from 1908 to 1916, and in 1929. The pieces remain the only US circulating coins with recessed designs. These coins were the last of their denominations to be struck for circulation, ending series that began in the 1790s.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Capped Bust</span> Former design used on United States coinage

The Capped Bust coinage of the United States consisted of a half dime, dime, quarter and half dollar.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">United States Sesquicentennial coinage</span> 1926 commemorative US half dollar and quarter eagle

The United States Sesquicentennial coin issue consisted of a commemorative half dollar and quarter eagle struck in 1926 at the Philadelphia Mint for the 150th anniversary of American independence. The obverse of the half dollar features portraits of the first president, George Washington, and the president in 1926, Calvin Coolidge, making it the only American coin to depict a president in his lifetime.

References

  1. 1 2 3 "Quarter Eagles". PCGS. Retrieved 2021-09-06.
  2. Travers, Scott A. (2007). Scott Travers' Top 88 Coins to Buy and Sell: 44 Winners and 44 Losers. Random House Information Group. p. 173. ISBN   9780375722219 . Retrieved June 13, 2021.
  3. "Liberty Head $2.5 - PCGS CoinFacts". PCGS. Retrieved 2021-09-06.
  4. Indian Head Quarter Eagles – King of the Counterfeit Gold Coin Series!