1853 1C J-151 PR (PCGS# 11628)
The August 2011 Chicago ANA World's Fair of Money Auction
Lot Number: 9002
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Medium gray toning overall with ice blue highlights. Sharply struck in all areas. One of the more interesting patterns of this era, the present piece combines the obverse from a regular quarter eagle of the year, with a hastily contrived reverse, a wreath enclosing the words ONE/CENT, but too widely spaced to be artistic. Although this and all others are designated as proofs, the dies were not polished, and a better designation would be mint state. The intent was to quickly create a die pair to show what a small diameter cent would look like, struck in German silver. At the time German silver was all the rage, and had been popular in many circles since the 1830s, at which earlier time Dr. Lewis Feuchtwanger was its main proponent. While the alloy is called German silver today, in the 1830s Feuchtwanger called it American silver and, alternatively, Feuchtwanger's composition.