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1919-D quarter date not to be overlooked

Item0429-a.jpgIt is easy to overlook some Standing Liberty quarter dates. There are simply too many of them. The 1916 is in a class by itself with a mintage of just 52,000. Some of the most costly are the 1918/17-S and 1927-S.

With those few special dates it is easy to forget that the Standing Liberty quarter is a set full of dates with mintages of less than 2 million. With a mintage of 1,944,000, it is hard for the 1919-D to stand out.

Prices, however, do not depend solely on mintage totals. While the 1919-D had a somewhat low mintage, it was apparently not saved at the time. Therefore, it has emerged as one of the better Standing Liberty quarter dates, at least in top grades.

Even in lower grades, the 1919-D might just be better than expected based on its $85 listing in G-4. One cannot read too much into G-4 prices of Standing Liberty quarters because the dates prior to 1925 are much tougher. The date was recessed beginning in 1925, but prior to that, if one tilted a quarter the wrong way the date disappears ? not quite, but close.

There appears to have been little or no saving in top grades of the 1919-D. It should not be all that surprising. Collectors and dealers at the time did not save new issues in any numbers. Q. David Bowers could only find a couple dealers with ?working inventories? of the 1916, and it has always been a key with that 52,000 mintage. If dealers did not carry the 1916, they were certainly not going to stock the 1919-D.

The bulk of the collecting was still  being done by date, not by date and mint. The Philadelphia 1919 had a mintage of over 11.3 million. If a collector could find it, he would not need a 1919-D.

The situation comes into focus when one tries to find the 1919-D in Mint State. In MS-60 it lists for $825. That is a high price for a Standing Liberty quarter, and it is a lot better than its mintage would suggest.

Item0429-b.jpgIn MS-65 the 1919-D is currently at $2,950 while an MS-65 with a full head is at $28,500. Once again, these are high prices and in both cases there is support from the grading services.

The Numismatic Guaranty Corporation reports a total of about 42 examples of the 1919-D in MS-65 or better without a full head. The total in MS-65 or better with a full head is a mere six coins.

At the Professional Coin Grading Service the 1919-D has been graded as MS-65 or better without a full head 53 times. In MS-65 or better with a full head, the total is just 13 coins.

The full head totals should be enough to make anyone pause. The total in MS-65 or better without a full head is also reason to consider the 1919-D a very tough coin.

Even though the 1919-D is already well above the expected levels based on mintages, its clear the 1919-D could easily go higher because they are simply not available in top grades.

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