Fantastic Gem Proof 1828 Capped Bust Quarter
The Parmelee Collection Example
The following coin is being offered at The Rarities Night Session of the Stacks Bowers ANA US Coin Auction as LOT # 10075. The lot description below describes the coin in glowing terms as it is one of the more beautiful bust quarters one will encounter. The 306 coins in the Rarities Night session of the sale represent some of the finest coins presently on the market and it always highlights the finest coins being offered.
1828 Capped Bust Quarter. B-4. Rarity-7, as a Proof. Proof-65 (PCGS).
The eye appeal of this richly toned and historic Proof coin simply must be seen in hand to be understood. The centers are toned with rose hues which blend with copper and golden tints, with the stars and devices accented by rich vibrant blue. Examination notes that the blue toning has settled deep into the design elements, into the letters of LIBERTY on the headband, into the recesses of Liberty’s curls and even inset into the tiny clasp on Liberty’s shoulder.
This elegant toning is perfectly matched on the reverse with tinges of blue tucked into the eagle’s feathers, around the entire legend and each device — right down to the tiny letters E PLURIBUS UNUM on the ribbon — with lighter rose and gold hues elsewhere.
The surfaces are a delight to examine, as there are only a few trace hints of contact. A couple of trivial planchet flakes are missing from the fields, and these quickly identify this coin as that sold in the Parmelee Sale in 1890, and in subsequent appearances over the following 125 years.
The strike is simply incredible on this 1828 quarter, as one would expect for an early Proof issue. The stars show full radial lines on all but a couple, and the denticles stand tall. Each letter is precisely chiseled out of the planchet by the force of the strike, with the tiny notch at the foot of the post on all the T’s of the reverse is much sharper than usually seen, along with every other device in the designs.
The fields are highly reflective and watery, and this coin has all the expected nuances of one of these early Proof issues.
Notice the reeding too, which is far bolder and finely executed than the reeding on earlier Proof quarters but matching that on the 1827 Original quarters.
These two Proof issues were struck on the new Muhlenberg coining press which had a closed collar that imparted much sharper reeding than the previous coining press used until late 1827.
William Kneass was the Mint Engraver at this time, succeeding to the position when Robert Scot passed away in 1823. The new closed collar allowed for tiny beads to be used instead of the long finger like denticles which often extended to the edge of the die, and now a raised solid lip could imparted by the die which was used in conjunction with the tiny beads, this adaptation is seen on the Small Size quarters starting in 1831 and the dimes in 1827 with the JR-10 variety only, and later on the 1828 Small Date dime.
Other series smaller in diameter than the half dollar used this new press, and show sharper reeding or smooth edges as designed imparted by this tight planchet fitting collar. This technical achievement of using a closed collar that allowed for the new style lipped dies for more uniform stacking of the coinage produced and extended the life of the coins in circulation as the nicks and handling marks were focused on the high lip rather than the central devices. This major change in the way dies were prepared continued in use until the steam press was finally adopted in 1836.
PCGS# 5375. NGC ID: 27HC.
Pedigree: Ex New York Stamp & Coin’s sale of the Lorin G. Parmelee Collection, June 1890, lot 981; S.H. & H. Chapman’s sale of the Thomas Cleneay Collection, December 1890, lot 1340; New Netherlands’ sale of the T. James Clarke Collection, April 1956, lot 1514; our (Bowers and Merena’s) sale of the Long Beach Connoisseur Collection, August 1999, lot 132.
PCGS Population (all die marriages of the issue): just 2; 0 finer.