Prior to 1881, gold proofs are almost entirely sold only in complete denomination sets. Gold proof sets sales continued in 1881, with 40 distributed by the end of the first quarter, but individual proof quarter eagles were struck and sold throughout the year as well, bringing the mintage for this issue to 51 pieces. These coins are among the most contrasted proofs in the Liberty quarter eagle series, and the palindrome date makes them popular type coins. Type collector demand is further heightened by the fact that many later proof quarter eagles (such as those struck from 1902 through 1907), lack the same degree of cameo contrast seen on late 19th century proofs. In United States Proof Coins, Volume IV: Gold, John Dannreuther estimates that only 18 to 22 proof 1881 quarter eagles survive. This is far less coins than the PCGS estimate of 30 to 35 pieces, but it might be more accurate. A significant number of the non-Cameo proofs reported by the grading services have likely been reconsidered in more recent years and redesignated Cameo or Deep Cameo. This is the only PR67 Ultra Cameo graded by NGC with none higher.
Listed at $80,000 in the NGC price guide.
Offered at $74,750
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