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4688

1907 $20 High Relief, Flat Rim MS66 PCGS....

2011 February Long Beach Signature US Coin Auction #1152

 
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Auction Ended On: Feb 4, 2011
Item Activity: 12 Internet/mail/phone bidders
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Location: Long Beach Convention Center
100 S. Pine Avenue
Long Beach, CA 90802

Description:
Premium Gem MCMVII Saint-Gaudens Twenty
Sought-After High Relief, Flat Rim Variety
Only 12,367 Pieces Minted
1907 $20 High Relief, Flat Rim MS66 PCGS. The gorgeous 1907 High Relief double eagles show Augustus Saint-Gaudens' design before Charles Barber made several drastic changes. Unsurprisingly, when Theodore Roosevelt chose Saint-Gaudens to begin the redesign of American coinage, he offended Barber, who was chief engraver at the mint. Not only did Barber feel highly qualified to do any designs that needed to be done, but he resented that his coins--especially the dime, quarter, and half dollar--would potentially be changed by an outside artist.
The rivalry between Charles Barber and Augustus Saint-Gaudens began well over a decade before the "Renaissance of American Coinage," as Roger Burdette and others have called it. They both judged a public competition for coinage redesign in 1891 and summarily rejected all of the entries. The following year they would clash again over the design for the Columbian Exposition award medal. Saint-Gaudens felt that Barber knew nothing of art, while Barber felt that Saint-Gaudens knew nothing of coinage. This impasse caused considerable delay and turmoil when Saint-Gaudens submitted his high relief designs to the Mint.
Barber has been accused of being jealous of Saint-Gaudens' talents, and while that is probably accurate, he did have a detailed knowledge of modern coining requirements. By the end of 1907, Barber had completely changed the double eagle hub, and as a result all issues other than the High Reliefs (and the very rare Ultra High Reliefs) differ significantly from the artist's original intentions. For collectors who desire an example of Saint-Gaudens' remarkable design as it was meant to appear, the 1907 High Relief is the only option. These fantastic pieces rightly belong in any type set as an issue separate from Barber's altered Arabic Numerals double eagle.
The present coin represents the less-available Flat Rim variety of the High Relief twenty. Like most examples seen, the central devices are exquisitely detailed, but the concave surfaces cause the peripheral devices, especially the sun, to be a little soft. The surfaces are a vivid greenish-gold color, with vibrant mint luster and no mentionable contact marks. Population: 38 in 66, 9 finer (12/10).(Registry values: N10218) (PCGS# 9136)

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The Coinage of Augustus Saint-Gaudens as Illustrated by the Morse and Duckor Collections
Revised Edition by James L. Halperin, Mark R. Borckardt, Mark Van Winkle, Jon Amato, and Gregory J. Rohan, with special contributor David W. Akers

The Coinage of Augustus Saint-Gaudens is an issue-by-issue examination of these two artistically inspired series of gold coins. Each date and mintmark is reviewed with up-to-date information, much of which has never been previously published. The book is based on two extraordinary collections: The Phillip H. Morse collection and the Dr. and Mrs. Steven L. Duckor collection.

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