Finest Known 1822 Blundered Reverse 25c
Browning 2 : Blundered Reverse, denomination first punched ‘50’ then corrected.
1822 Browning 2 is the only pairing of this blundered reverse with an 1822-dated obverse. According to groundbreaking research by author and researcher Steve Tompkins, the number punches employed in the re-punching of the denomination were last used in 1818, and the deterioration of the master reverse die in late 1818 had not yet occurred. Based upon these findings, Steve Tompkins argues convincingly that the blundered 25/50C reverse first used in 1822 was actually produced in early 1818, then sat in storage until it was pressed into use in 1822, then sat in storage once again until it was resurrected for one final use in 1828.
This has long been recognized as the Finest Known 1822 Blundered Reverse Quarter, and it has sold strongly in every auction where it appeared, beginning with Thomas Elder’s 1910 sale of the Peter Mougey Collection. The surfaces are prooflike, and softly toned in light grayish gold with amber, rose, blue, and violet highlights. This is the only 1822 25/50 certified by PCGS as MS65, and is the finest example listed in the CAC Census.
Next in line is likely the current PCGS MS65+, last sold by Heritage Auctions, June 2016, lot 4429 at $108,688 as MS65, then upgraded. The third finest is the former Eugene Gardner coin, last sold by Heritage Auctions, October 2014, lot 98345 at $123,375 as NGC MS65, now graded PCGS MS64+, and held in the collection of Dr. Charles Link. This MS64+ is the only other 1822 B-2 Quarter listed as Mint State in the CAC Census. Fourth best is the current PCGS MS64, formerly NGC MS63, ex Heritage Auctions, January 2007, lot 907 at $69,000.
Finally, two coins struck from these dies have been certified by PCGS as PR65, James A. Stack 3/1975: 21 and Garrett 3/1980: 636, both of which are also included in the CAC Census as PR65.
Peter Mougey; Thomas Elder “Peter Mougey, Esq.”, September 1910, lot 687 @ $35 as “Brilliant Proof”; John H. Clapp (?); Louis E. Eliasberg, Sr.; Bowers and Merena, April 1997, lot 1385 @ $61,600 as “MS-64, prooflike”; Heritage Auctions, March 2006, lot 564 @ $195,500 as NGC MS66 #685822-002; Heritage Auctions, April 2009, lot 2323 @ $184,000 as NGC MS66 #685822-002; Brent Pogue; Stack’s Bowers “D. Brent Pogue, Part I”, May 2015, lot 1071 @ $188,000 as PCGS MS65 #06858027 to Joseph O’Connor (OCNUMIS).