Coin Specifications

Category: Draped Bust $10 (1795-1804)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 44,344
Obverse Designer: Robert Scot
Reverse Designer: Robert Scot
Composition: Gold
Fineness: 0.9160
Weight: 17.5000g
AGW: 0.5154oz
Melt Value: $636.16 (2/21/2017)
Diameter: 33mm
Edge: Reeded
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1801 $10 MS obverse 1801 $10 MS reverse

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Description & Analysis

The 1801 eagle is perhaps the most available date of all Heraldic Eagle ten dollar pieces, which were only minted from 1797 until 1804. However, the term 'most available' does not mean common by any means, as every date in this short-lived series suffers from an uncommonly low survival rate. Although the opinions of noted researchers vary on the estimated rate of survival, it is in all likelihood less than 3% of the original cumulative mintage of the type. In his Complete Encyclopedia, Walter Breen writes: 'On December 31, 1804, coinage of this denomination halted, pursuant to verbal orders from President Thomas Jefferson. The reason was extensive melting [sic] by bullion dealers ... .' The fact that U.S. gold coinage, until 1834, was valued at a slight premium over silver coinage provided a financial incentive for bullion dealers to export the gold coins overseas, where they were predictably melted.

Of the early gold eagles that survived the melting pots, most were saved as curiosities and family heirlooms by non-collectors, which would explain why so many existing examples are cleaned, damaged, or otherwise impaired. Locating an original example in any grade is difficult, but finding an original Heraldic Eagle ten in Mint State presents a formidable challenge. The 1801 eagle has the highest recorded mintage of the series, with a total delivery of 44,344 pieces between 1801 and 1802.

Description and Analysis courtesy of Heritage Auctions and may not be republished without written permission.


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Price Guide

Last Updated: 3/10/2016

Click on a price to see historical prices, comparison charts and trends.

1801 $10 MS
Base $ 4450 7700 10100 13900 17450 21750 23000 25000 27000 30500 37500 45500 70000 150000 290000 - - - - -
$ - - - - 28000 - - 49000 - - - - - -

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Total Graded: 400
Low Grade: VF
Average Grade: 60
High Grade: 65

Upcoming Auctions

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Auction House
Sale / Lot
1/8/2003 PCGS MS 63   Heritage Auctions 2003, Orlando, FL. (FUN) Signature Sale #308, 308/Lot# 8734 $19,550.00
1/29/2007 NGC MS 61   David Lawrence Rare Coins Internet Auction # 124, 129/Lot# 1516 $32,200.00
5/25/2008 PCGS MS 62   Goldberg May 25-27, 2008 Pre-Long Beach Coin and Currency Auction, 47/Lot# 4710 $36,800.00
11/21/2010 PCGS Genuine Genuine   Teletrade Auction 2963, 2963/Lot# 5450 $17,825.00
12/2/2010 NGC Details XF Details  Heritage Auctions 2010 December Houston Signature US Coin Auction Session(3), 1147/Lot# 4495 $10,350.00
5/29/2011 NGC AU 58   Bonhams Coins and Banknotes, 19158/Lot# 1269 $22,230.00
4/1/2012 NGC AU 53   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(1), 131215/Lot# 26648 $15,525.00
7/6/2014 PCGS   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 07/06/2014, 199/Lot# 206371 $3,850.00
6/4/2015 NGC Details AU Details  Heritage Auctions 2015 June 4 - 7 Long Beach Expo US Coins Signature Auction - Long Beach Session(2), 1221/Lot# 4279 $5,875.00
9/30/2015 PCGS   Stack's Bowers October 2014 Pogue, 6073/Lot# 2103 $188,000.00

NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1801 $10 MS
1801 $10 MS Prooflike
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: MS 61
Points: 8436
Owner: American Independence Collection
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