Goldberg Coins and Collectibles

Sale 37

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Lot 1898

1798 $5 Capped Bust. Large eagle, large 8, 14 stars. NGC graded AU-53 Breen-2C. Lightly toned. There is some residual mint luster around the main devices, though almost the entire coin is lovingly draped in old-gold patina suggesting many decades of storage in old coin cabinets. Pop 2; 9 finer; 2 in 55; 6 in 58; 1 in 60.

The engraver of the reverse die added an extra star, unwittingly creating a unique type coin for modern collectors. The 1798 14 Stars variety is quite scarce and highly desired today. As few as 25 to 30 examples of this variety may exist, with few of the great collectors owning one. Walter Breen attempted to justify star counts in relation to the number of states in the union at any given time. He had difficulty explaining this count of 14 stars, which was likely a simple engraving blunder. Sometimes the simplest explanation is the correct one.
Estimated Value $18,000 - 20,000.


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