There are two varieties for this example, Large D and Medium D. The best way to differentiate is to see if the mint mark is wider or taller. If it is wider, than it is most likely a medium example. If it is the latter, then it is most likely a large example.
With a mintage of 88,982, the 1844-D is one of the most available Dahlonega half eagles struck during the 1840's. Compared to other obtainable dates, 1843-D & 1845-D, the 1844-D is the hardest to come by in high grades. In particular, NGC and PCGS have only graded 19 & 24 uncirculated examples, with the highest grade being an NGC MS64+. The surface of many 1844-D $5 gold eagles have defects caused by the minting process. Some of these include stains, nicks in the planchet, and coarse areas. On the other hand, the strike of these coins are...
In 1829, Christopher Bechtler Sr. migrated to the United States from Germany with his family. He opened up a watchmaker store in Philadelphia with some success. Meanwhile, the Carolina Gold Rush, the first gold rush in the United States, followed the discovery of a large gold nugget in North Carolina in 1799. This created a series of findings in North Carolina that lasted all the way up to the 1840s. In order to take advantage of this, Bechtler and his family operated a private mint from 1831 to 1850s. He was able to produce more than a million gold coins in his private mint.
On June 14th, 1838, a boiler explosion caused the Pulaski Steamship to sink approximately 30 miles off the coast of North Carolina. Two-thirds of the passengers and crew on-board were lost as a result of this disaster.
During the 1980s, the South African Gold Krugerrand and the Canadian Gold Maple Leaf were extremely popular coins in the United States. In 1984, over $600 million worth of Krugerrands were marketed in the United States. However, people began to react to the racial tensions in South Africa and sales plummeted. Eventually, President Reagan banned the Krugerrands as a way of taking an economic stand against the South African government. This crippled the South African mint as half of their sales were derived from the United States.