Goldberg Coins and Collectibles

Sale 48

Pre-Long Beach Coin Auction

Flying Eagle Cents
Lot Photo Description Realized
Lot 676
1856 Flying Eagle Cent. . Snow-9. PCGS graded Proof 64. Housed in an old green holder. Only 2,000 pieces minted. Most easily identifiable by the microscopic die line through the U in UNITED continuing to the eagle's beak. This is by far the most frequently encountered variety of the various 1856 Flying Eagle cent varieties. Opinion has it that Proofs from this die marriage were struck in late 1857 through 1860. An attractively mirrored example that features a light overlay of honey-tan toning on each side. It is also a well-balanced coin in which the striking details are sharply brought up on both sides. Plus, there no surface flaws that might separate this coin from its technical and highly beautiful Proof 64 grade. Pop 181; 53 finer, 48 in 65, 4 in 66, 1 in 67 (PCGS # 2037) .

Die characteristics: After working dies were made to strike Flying Eagle cents, the dies were dressed or finished to remove burrs and surface irregularities. Proof dies were given special mirror finishes. Among Proof dies, those dated 1856 were polished less fully than those dated 1857 and 1858. Among nearly all Proof Flying Eagle cents, the Proof surface is not as mirrorlike as that found, for example, on 1857 and 1858 Proof silver or gold coins.
Estimated Value $16,000 - 17,000.
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Lot 677
1856 Flying Eagle Cent. . Snow-3. PCGS graded AU-58 Red. Very rare in non-Proof. Probably 20% or so of the 1856 Flying Eagle Cents are from this die pairing. Small cent specialist Richard Snow estimates that somewhere between 500 and 700 pieces are extant today. Most of this variety were produced as business strikes which explains why advanced collectors often seek out this variety for that reason. The surfaces are lovely golden brown overall with faint flyspecking of original prooflike luster surrounding the better than average devices. Just a bit weakly struck on the feather tips and outer margins of the wreath. Pop 1; 2 finer for the variety; 1 in 63; 1 in 65.
Estimated Value $11,000 - 12,000.
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Lot 678
1857 Flying Eagle Cent. NGC graded MS-66. Old holder. A gorgeous gem of the finest order, one whose full-blown luster is amplified mightily by the lovely toning. The highly lustrous surfaces no detractions in the way of spotting or marks of note. Sharply struck as well, in fact fully so, which is unusual due to the hard nature of the 88% copper, 12% nickel alloy. Definitely sharp enough to merit mention here. Pop 11; None finer at NGC. (PCGS # 2016) .

Historic note: This basic knuckle-action coining press mechanism that struck the Flying Eagle cents (also called the lever press mechanism), was pioneered in 1817 in Germany. The striking was more uniform than that accomplished by the older, pre-1836 screw-type press driven by weighted arms.

The first steam press employed in Philadelphia was installed in 1836. It and the others that were purchased afterwards continued in use until 1858, when a gentleman named David Gilbert improved the Mint presses. (In 1874 a larger and even more powerful type of knuckle-action press made in Philadelphia by Morgan & Orr was installed at the Mint.).
Estimated Value $6,500 - 7,000.
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Lot 679
1858 Flying Eagle Cent. Large letters. NGC graded MS-65. This is an aesthetically pleasing Gem with dominant copper-nickel color over which splashes of pale toning patina have gathered, furthering the beauty of this specimen. Both sides are equally free of bothersome carbon and there are no obvious marks or impairments to preclude this desirable grade designation. The strike much sharper than average. An foremost opportunity for the Small Cent specialist. Pop 123; 22 finer; 20 in 66; 1 in 66 Star; 1 in 67. (PCGS # 2019) .
Estimated Value $2,700 - 2,900.
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Lot 680
1858/7 Flying Eagle Cent. NCS graded Details of MS-60. Improperly Cleaned. The only full strike we have ever seen. Rare. An incredible array of detail seen on this overdate 1858 Flying Eagle cent. In a series where soft strikes are the norm, this impeccable specimen shows full and complete flight feathers on the eagle all the way out to the furthest point from the body. The breast plumage is also microscopically detailed. Examine with a magnifying and you will see what we mean. The date, as well, shows a full sharp tip of the earlier 7 above and to the right of the upper curve of the final 8 in the date. This, along with other diagnostics such as the broken wing tip, are the numismatic detective's "fingerprints" for determining the variety. Should cause quite a stir of activity when bidding begins (PCGS # 2022) .
Estimated Value $3,800 - 4,000.
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