PCGS Specials

HomeUS Coins1824/1 Capped Bust Quarter Eagle : A Collector's Guide

1824/1 Capped Bust Quarter Eagle : A Collector’s Guide

1824/1 Capped Head Left Quarter Eagle. Image: Stack's Bowers / CoinWeek.
1824/1 Capped Head Left Quarter Eagle. Image: Stack’s Bowers / CoinWeek.

By Charles Morgan and Hubert Walker for CoinWeek Notes …..

The Philadelphia Mint struck its entire mintage of 2,600 Capped Bust Quarter Eagles in 1824 using a single die pair that was leftover from 1821. The obverse die was not used, and the final digit of the date was reworked from a 1 to a 4. The top of the serif is visible within the top of the 4, making the 1824/1 Capped Bust Quarter Eagle a clear overdate (admittedly, it is much easier to discern this with a coin in hand under glass than by reviewing online photographs).

The 1824/1 is one of the most difficult quarter eagle dates collect, with just over 50 grading events at all levels reported by NGC and PCGS. Most of the mintage was melted down shortly after its issue as the 15:1 silver to gold ratio laid out in the Mint Act of 1792 no longer market. Not surprisingly, many of the coins that do survive are either in Mint State or About Uncirculated condition. These were likely saved as mementos or souvenirs. As of May 2024, NGC and PCGS report just over 50 grading events for the issue, with nearly half of the survivors at the Mint State level.

The Mint State population of the 1824/1 Capped Bust Quarter Eagle has remained stable over the past decade. Through August 2012, PCGS reported just nine grading events in Mint State. As of May 2024, that figure has increased to just 12. To date, NGC accounts for just nine coins in their census (the growth of PCGS’ number accounts for the removal of coins previously in NGC holders).

CAC has not encapsulated any examples as of yet, but of the nine stickered coins in their pop report, four are in Mint State; we track three of those coins in our data set below.

* * *

Market Data and Noteworthy Specimens

Top Population: PCGS MS64 (2, 5/2024), NGC MS63 (1, 5/2024), and CAC MS64 (1:0 stickered:graded, 5/2024).

  • PCGS MS64 #32231574: As NGC MS64+. “Stellar Collection,” Stack’s Bowers, January 22, 2013, Lot 13288 – Passed. As PCGS MS64 #32231574. “The McCoy Family Collection of U.S. Early Gold Quarter Eagles,” Heritage Auctions, January 7, 2016, Lot 5537 – $91,062.50. Crossed to PCGS, downgraded by one-half point. Streak covering long scratch in the left obverse field between stars 1 and 2 to the neck. Copper spot at forehead.
  • PCGS MS64 CAC #06915577: As NGC MS64. “The Joseph J. Abbell Collection of U.S. Coins,” Heritage Auctions, January 7, 2000, Lot 7511 – $37,950; “The Christopher Young Collection,” Heritage Auctions, April 6, 2001, Lot 7661 – $26,450. Imaged on PCGS CoinFacts. Copper spot in left obverse field to the right of star 2. Scattered copper discoloration areas throughout the right obverse field. Copper spot on the reverse at the first T of STATES. Softhly struck centers. First MS64 1824/1 $2.50 certified by any grading service.
Auction '85 Catalog listing for a condition census 1824/1 Capped Bust Quarter Eagle.
Auction ’85 Catalog listing for the Pogue 1824/1 Capped Bust Quarter Eagle.
  • PCGS MS63 CAC #31694529: As Gem Brilliant Uncirculated. “Auction ’85,” RARCOA, July 1985, Lot 357; “A Gentleman’s Collection,” American Numismatic Rarities, June 2005, Lot 1005 – $50,600; “The D. Brent Pogue Family Collection, Part II,” Stack’s Bowers / Sotheby’s, September 2015, Lot 2049 – $70,500. Pogue novelty insert.
  • PCGS MS61 CAC #45523497: As PCGS MS61 CAC. Stack’s, January 5, 2009, Lot 886 – Passed; Stack’s Bowers, August 2011, Lot 7602 – $35,000 Reserve Not Met; Stack’s Bowers, August 7, 2012, Lot 11654 – $41,125. As PCGS MS61 CAC #45523497. GreatCollections, April 7, 2024, Lot 1299000 – View. Small cluster of hits in left field to the right of star 3. Angled dark streak between stars 3 and 4. Small dig on bust truncation above 1. Scruffy reverse.
  • PCGS MS61 #25202918: As PCGS MS61 #25055605. Heritage Auctions, July 11, 2013, Lot 3295 – $36,718.25; As PCGS MS61 #25202918. “The Basket PA Collection of United States Coins,” GreatCollections, August 8, 2021, Lot 1017419 – View. Discoloration spot between stars 3 and 4.
  • NGC MS61 #3809729-005: “The Joan Zieg Steinbrenner Collection, Part II,” Heritage Auctions, January 9, 2020, Lot 4331 – $21,000.
  • NGC MS61 #1727952-001: “The Collection of Edwin J. Mantooth Bowers,” Heritage Auctions, April 23, 2015, Lot 5248 – $23,500.
  • NGC MS61: Stack’s Bowers, March 28, 2011, Lot 6223 – $17,250.
  • NGC MS61: Stack’s, March 23, 2009, Lot 5741 – $26,450. Dark streak at the left tip of star 9. Two planchet digs to the right of the hair. Angled scratch below star 6.
  • NGC MS61: Stack’s, June 25, 2008, Lot 2041 – $34,500. Two tiny ticks in the left obverse field to the left of the mouth.

* * *



The obverse displays a somewhat mature and stout version of Liberty, who faces left, head covered with a mobcap (an early 19th-century woman’s headdress) under which curls of long hair drape over the forehead and down the back of the neck. The cap displays LIBERTY along a ribbon banner at the cap’s base. Thirteen six-pointed stars encircle the portrait inside a denticulated rim, the ring broken by an opening for the date at the bottom, below the truncation of the neck.


The reverse center displays a left-facing eagle, wings outstretched nearly to the denticulated rim, body covered by a Union shield, an olive branch in the right claw (left to the observer), and three arrows in the left claw. Above the eagle is a concentric banner below STATES OF, folded back at the ends, displaying E PLURIBUS UNUM. The legend UNITED STATES OF AMERICA encircles inside the rim, separated into three parts by the eagle’s wing tips, and the denomination of 2 1/2 D. (the fractional separator horizontal) is at the bottom.


The edge of the Large Diameter Capped Head Left Quarter Eagle is reeded, a common anti-counterfeiting tactic.

Coin Specifications

Country: United States of America
Year Of Issue: 1824
Denomination: Two Dollars and Fifty Cents (USD)
Mintmark: None (Philadelphia)
Mintage: 2,600
Alloy: 91.67% gold, 8.33% silver and copper
Weight: ±4.37 g
Diameter: ±20.00 mm
Edge: Reeded
OBV Designer: Robert Scot, based on a John Reich design
REV Designer: Robert Scot, based on a John Reich design
Quality: Business Strike


* * *

CoinWeek Notes
CoinWeek Notes
CoinWeek Notes presents expert analysis and insights from Charles Morgan and Hubert Walker, the award-winning editors of CoinWeek.com.

Related Articles


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

PCGS Set Registry

AU Capital Management US gold Coins

Blanchard and Company Gold and Precious Metals