1799/8 $1 15 Reverse Stars MS (PCGS# 6883)

FUN07 Platinum Night #1

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    Heritage Auctions
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Lot Description
1799/8 $1 15 Stars Reverse MS63 NGC. B-3, BB-141, R.3. Toned with dark, somber golden-gray hues over the entire surface, with darker flecks on the reverse. Luster peeks through from the fields, but is generally overwhelmed by the toning. Close examination of the obverse will locate crossing adjustment marks on Liberty's face, neck, and hair, some of which slide into the surrounding fields. There is also an excellent pedigree marker in the form of a shallow nick which extends horizontally behind Liberty's eye into the nearby curl. The strike is fairly sharp for this variety, with elevation challenges on Liberty's curls, and more are found on the right wing of the eagle. These devices are often found weakly impressed by the dies. Clean surfaces as expected for the grade, with no bumps or nicks otherwise noteworthy. This variety is always a favorite to examine. First off, the overdate feature is comically bold, as no effort was put forth to hide the underdigit 8 beneath the second 9 of the date. For the mint engraver who happened to engrave these dies, a less than perfect day unfolded. Without thinking, he placed 15 stars over the eagle's head but then noticed the mistake, and rather than discard the die, or simply strike coins with it, he decided to "hide" two of the stars. Dies are very difficult to erase errors from (thankfully for die variety collectors today), so the engraver decided to cover two of the stars by extending the clouds down over them, figuring no one would notice. Perhaps no one noticed until decades later, since coinage continued using this pair of dies until they failed in the normal course of events. However, two little star points peek out from the enlarged cloud on the left, and one and a fraction star points extend from the enlarged cloud on the right. The engraver's bad day is thus recalled by collectors today. Certainly one of the finer examples known of this important and popular overdate. Census: 6 in 63, 7 finer (11/06).
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