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The Spectacular Mint State William Forrester Dunham 1795 Eagle to be Sold in August 2024 Rarities Night Auction

Tracing its pedigree to one of the most famous B. Max Mehl’s auctions of the 1940s, this fabulous ten dollar gold piece is from the historic first year of issue. The William Forrester Dunham Collection, sold in June 1941, stands today as one of the monumental collections of all time, featuring an 1804 dollar, an 1822 half eagle, a set of gold Stellas and many other important rarities.

Lot 2196 of the Dunham sale was this 1795 eagle, today graded MS-61 by PCGS. It is a gorgeous, semi-prooflike example, exceptionally well produced with bold to sharp striking detail, including the central design elements that are often not so expertly rendered.

This coin features the Dunham “stamp,” it to others in that famous collection. It is a tiny “D” punch, which he used to “mark” certain issues. The most notable is the aforementioned 1804 dollar, but this punch was also found on a number of Hard Times tokens from his extensive collection. It is also known on a 1797 Heraldic Eagle $10, which was offered as lot 2199 (where like on the 1804 dollar, the D was found on one of the clouds). On this beautiful 1795 $10, the microscopic letter is hidden within the eagle’s breast feathers, easily missed if casually looking at the coin without magnification. This tiny feature was overlooked by B. Max Mehl in his cataloging in 1941.

Following the Dunham sale, this coin’s pedigree is lost, however, our consignor ended up purchasing it privately from us (Stack’s) in the 1980s by private treaty. Consigned to our August Rarities Night Auction by the family who purchased it some four decades ago, this beautiful and historic early eagle was graded by PCGS as MS-61 and will be making its first auction appearance since June 1941.

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