1795-1804 $10 gold eagles only third complete set by die marriage

Stack’s Bowers Galleries announced this past week the sale of the Harvey B. Jacobson, Jr. collection of 1795 to 1804 $10 Gold Eagles. Jacobson is only the third collector known to have completed this set by die marriage, joining the august company of Anthony J. Taraszka and the owner of the Tyrant Collection.

Taraszka, author of the standard reference on the early $10s, sold his complete set of early $10s through Stack’s Bowers Galleries in its August 2019 auction of the American Numismatic Association’s (ANA)  World’s Fair of Money.

1795 capped bust right eagle. BD-3, Taraszka-3. Rarity-6. 9 Leaves. AU-58 (NGC).

As with so many collectors, Jacobson, a patent attorney by trade, returned to his childhood avocation of coins later in life, at first collecting readily available pre-1933 gold coinage before taking a deep dive into the much rarer first gold coinages produced by the United States. Within a few years, he advanced to the challenge of collecting the early $10s by die marriage, inaugurating his collection with the early 2002 purchase of a superb, original, and boldly lustrous 1797 BD-2, Taraszka-8 with Heraldic Eagle reverse graded PCGS MS-62 (CAC).

With this auspicious start, Jacobson was hooked, methodically acquiring die marriages of the early $10s as they came up for sale through specialist dealers and major public auctions. And, just a few months after the 20th anniversary of the beginning of his set, Jacobson filled the last hole in the collection with the acquisition of the 1803 BD-5, Taraszka-30 “14 Star Reverse” graded PCGS MS-60 OGH from Stack’s Bowers Galleries’ April 2022 Auction of the Andrew M. Hain Collection.

“The temptation when collecting a series by die marriage is to just fill in the holes with any old coins,” said Stack’s Vice President of Numismatics Vicken Yegparian. “But Harvey was not that guy, instead picking up great-looking coins and examples with significant pedigrees in his journey toward completion. His 1795 9 Leaves graded NGC AU-58 from the George H. Blake Collection is just one of the coins in the set that marries a great look with a great pedigree.”

Reverse of 1795 with nine leaves or fronds on the palm branch. The head and eagle punches are attributed to hubs prepared by Robert Scot.

his coin, last sold by Stack’s in its October 2006 71stAnniversary Sale, had been consigned by descendants of Blake, who had passed away in 1955. The extremely rare 9 Leaves reverse type, with only about 20 specimens thought to survive, was first published in 1926, and another example was not identified and publicly sold until 1960, perhaps making the Blake specimen only the second identified of this distinctive type.

“I have had the opportunity to work with Harvey numerous times during my tenure as president of Stack’s Bowers Galleries, and he’s been a true gentleman at every turn” said Brian Kendrella. “It makes me happy and proud to see the fruits of Harvey’s labours in the pages of our award-winning catalogs.”

The Jacobson Collection will be featured in its own, stand-alone catalog and will be sold in Griffin Studios in Costa Mesa, CA as part of Stack’s Bowers Galleries’ Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2022 Rarities Night Session in its Official Auction of the Whitman Coin & Collectibles Expo.

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