O.106 R3. Finest known. Wow, cobalt electric blue toning with flashlight luster! Lot 4095. Per Stacks cataloger, "this reverse die, in its only use in the production of 1809 Capped Bust half dollars, is easy to identify due to recutting on the letter N in UNITED and a long tool mark (as made) from the upper right corner of the shield that extends toward the top of the eagle's right (facing) wing. This die marriage is described as a "common" variety by Stephen J. Herrman in the autumn 2011 revision to Auction & Mail Bid Prices Realized for Bust Half Dollars: 1794-1839, but the author also establishes the remarkable condition rarity of the present Gem by ranking it as Condition Census #1 for the 1809 O-106 variety. Vividly toned with cobalt-blue iridescence ringing the peripheries, the centers are also appealing in salmon-pink patina that has a mottled distribution on the obverse. Vibrant mint bloom throughout, with a well centered strike that imparted bold to sharp definition to all design elements. A lack of distracting abrasions confirms the premium Gem grade from NGC. Finest certified for the issue as a whole! Numismatic Reflections by Q. David Bowers. This superb Gem, from the early range of the Capped Bust series, is one of the finest I have ever seen. The Kaufman Collection pedigree is important, as Phil was and is one of the most careful connoisseurs in numismatics. Here indeed is a half dollar that will be a highlight of the collection of its proud new owner. NGC Census (all die varieties of the 1809 half dollar issue): just 4 in MS-66 with or without a * designation; none are graded higher at either PCGS or NGC. From Heritage's sale of the Joseph C. Thomas Collection, April 2009, lot 2406. Earlier Ex: Phil Kaufman Collection." Previously sold on March 30, 2009 for $14,950 by Heritage Galleries Auction 1124, described in the catalog as, "This piece is remarkable for its nearly perfect technical quality, and it is even more distinctive for its amazing aesthetic appeal. A few hair curls and feathers have slight weakness, but the overall design sharpness is much finer than usual for the variety or for the date. The surfaces have soft, frosty luster beneath an amazing display of medium gold and ivory at the centers, surrounded by intense cobalt-blue, sea-green, and violet toning closer to the borders". Was in an NGC MS66 holder (1720049-004) with the O.106 designation. Has the obv die crack thru stars on the left.
Phil Kaufman Collection - Joseph C. Thomas Collection - Heritage 4/2009:2406, $14,950 - Stack's/Bowers 3//2012:4095, $19,550
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