Obverse 1: Proof Die, Medium Date, Slight Downward Slope, Star 2 Repunched
Reverse A: Proof Die, Die Line between O(F A)MERICA and Wreath
Obverse 1 Reverse A
Obverse Diagnostic Point(s) Reverse Diagnostic Point(s)
Comments: Few examples of 1840 No Drapery proof strikes are known. From auction house review and examination of the plate coin, two diagnostics are available for 1840 No Drapery proof strikes. On Obverse 1, Star 2 is repunched though not dramatically. On Reverse A, there are die lines between O(F A)MERICA and the adjacent wreath. Note the uneven tops of DI(M)E right serif as compared to the left serif of DIM(E). This denomination hubbing characteristic could be useful for further proof die tracking for business strikes coinage.
From the Bowers and Merena Eliasberg Auction catalog, the following comments were retrieved, "Star 2 dramatically repunched. Die lines from denticles over space between OF and A".
From the Heritage 2007 ANA Signature Auction; 1840 10C No Drapery Dime PR65 Cameo NGC. Ex: P. Kaufman. The original mintage of the proof 1840 No Drapery dimes is unknown, although certainly quite small. Only five or six pieces are known today, including the Kaufman Gem Cameo proof, the finest example known to us. Many important cabinets offered in recent years have lacked this date in proof, including the Garrett, Norweb, and Lovejoy collections. Four of the known examples are listed in our roster of survivors:
1. PR65 Cameo NGC. The present coin. Kaufman Collection. This piece does not appear to match any of the following.
2. PR65 NGC. Allenburger Collection (B. Max Mehl, 3/1948), lot 985; John Jay Pittman (David Akers, 10/1997), lot 586; Bowers and Merena (8/1999), lot 104; Richmond Collection (David Lawrence, 3/2005), lot 1235.
3. PR64 NGC. Heritage (10/2001), lot 6028. This piece is identified in the catalog as the Eliasberg specimen, although the plates do not match.
4. PR63. Louis E. Eliasberg, Sr. (Bowers, 5/1996), lot 1117.
Like the 1840 proof half dime, the interior space of the 4 crowds the thin, flat top of this digit. Star 2 is minutely repunched, although there is no apparent recutting on any other star. A faint horizontal die line pierces the top of Liberty's head. The reverse has a few short, diagonal spines from the border over OF, and both sides have faint die polish lines. The Eliasberg specimen shows these identical characteristics, and the others probably do as well. David Akers points out that the reverse spines over OF are diagnostic for proofs of this issue.
Plate Coin: Courtesy Eugene H. Gardner Collection, NGC PF65 Cameo - Kaufman
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