The Survival Estimate represents an average of one or more experts' opinions as to how many examples survive of a particular coin in three categories: 1) all grades, 2) 60 or better, and 3) 65 or better. These estimates are based on a variety of sources, including population reports, auction appearances, and personal knowledge. Survival estimates include coins that are raw, certified by PCGS, and certified by other grading services.
Numismatic Rarity converts the Survival Estimate for a particular coin into a number from 1 to 10 (with decimal increments) based on the PCGS Rarity Scale. The higher the number, the more rare the coin.
Relative Rarity By Type
Relative Rarity By Type ranks the rarity of this coin with all other coins of this Type. Lower numbers indicate rarer coins.
Relative Rarity By Series
Relative Rarity By Series ranks the rarity of this coin with all other coins of this Series. Lower numbers indicate rarer coins.
David Akers (1975/88):
Comparable to the 1840-D and virtually unobtainable in high grades. I have never seen a strictly uncirculated piece and only two or three that would even grade AU. When available, the typical specimen is VF or EF and softly struck. The 1841-D is just as rare as the more highly regarded D mint quarter eagles of the mid-1850's and yet, when offered, it usually brings substantially less. For this reason, I consider this date, along with the 1840-D and 1842-D, to be among the most underrated and undervalued in the series.
The 1841-D is the most easily obtained of the three rare Dahlonega quarter eagles struck from 1840 through 1842 but it is a very scarce issue, comparing favorably to some of the higher-priced low mintage Dahlonega issues from the mid-1850’s.
The 1841-D quarter eagle is scarce in all grades and it is most often seen in Very Fine and low end Extremely Fine grades. It is rare in Extremely Fine-45 and very rare in About Uncirculated. Four Mint State examples are currently known to exist.
STRIKE: This date is much better struck than the 1840-D. The obverse shows good detail at the center. There is usually weakness noted on the hair around the eye of Liberty and on the bun. The stars are sharp with most showing full radial lines at the centers. The border is thick and squared with full, distinct milling. The reverse is as sharp as the obverse. The feathers are well-formed with the exception of those on the right leg, which can be weak. The lettering is sharp as is the milling.
SURFACES: The 1841-D quarter eagle usually has below average surfaces. With very few exceptions, examples show heavy abrasions and/or hairlines. For some reason, many have rim nicks as well. Noticeable die cracks are visible on the obverse and the reverse, further adding to the rough appearance of the typical example.
LUSTER: The quality of luster is about average for a Dahlonega quarter eagle produced during the early 1840’s. High grade, uncleaned pieces usually have frosty luster. A few are known with semi-prooflike fields and these are very rare.
COLORATION: Original uncleaned 1841-D quarter eagles do not usually show appealing coloration. Many have a somewhat washed-out appearance with light yellow or pale green-gold hues. In addition, the majority have been cleaned or dipped at some time.
EYE APPEAL: It is very difficult to locate an attractive example of this date. 1841-D quarter eagles with good overall eye appeal are rare and in demand.
DIE VARIETIES: Three die varieties are known.
Variety 2-C: On the obverse, the first 1 in the date is spaced equally between the bust and the denticles while the second 1 is closer to the denticles. Late die states show a bisecting crack from the third star through the bust to the eleventh star. On this reverse, which was used only in 1841, the shaft of the arrow joins the mintmark over the right edge of the opening in the D. The fraction bar extends to the right edge of the mintmark. The feather extends into the opening of the mintmark from the right center. The 1 in the fraction is below the lower serif of the mintmark. The mintmark is high and left and very close to the eagle’s talon.
On late die states, a crack can be seen from the rim through the left side of the A in STATES to the eagle’s head, from the feathers of the wing to the tip of the middle arrowhead and through the I in AMERICA to the rim. The vast majority of the known 1841-D quarter eagles are from this die pair.
Variety 2-D: This variety uses the same obverse as on Variety 2-B. On the reverse, which was used in 1841 and possibly again in 1843, the shaft of the arrow ends over the left edge of the upright of the mintmark. The fraction bar extends to the left side of the opening in the D. The 1 in the fraction is entirely to the left of the mintmark. No die breaks are seen on this use of Reverse D.
Only two examples of this die pair have been seen on the 1841-D quarter eagle (Heritage 1/03: 4657 and Heritage 1993 ANA: 5508) and it appears to be extremely rare.
Variety 2-E: The shaft of the arrow ends over the left edge of the upright of the mintmark. The faction bar extends to the center of the opening in the mintmark while no feathers enter the opening. The 1 in the fraction is entirely to the left of the mintmark. The lower serif of the mintmark is close to the 1 in the fraction. This reverse is illustrated in the Akers book on quarter eagles.
An example of this variety was first identified in the Pittman collection. It appears to be very rare.
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