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1907 High Relief Twenty, Satiny MS65
Wire Rim Variant

1907 $20 High Relief, Wire Rim MS65 PCGS. It is difficult today to imagine the beginning of sculpture in America, or rather a time when there virtually was no sculpture in this country. In his Reminiscences, Homer Saint-Gaudens comments on the medium in the earlier days of the Republic (if the names are not familiar, there is good reason):

"For though Copley and West made their names known abroad, no sculptor appeared in this land to parallel their efforts. True, about 1812, William Rush of Philadelphia turned from the carving of ship figure-heads to the designing of an occasional fountain or bust, with Hezekiah Augur from New Haven, Connecticut, and John Frazee of Rahway, New Jersey, following close on his heels."

In the mid-1870s Augustus Saint-Gaudens began to sculpt magnificent pieces of monumental sculpture, the likes of which had never been seen in the United States. He continued to produce such monumental and private sculpture for the next 30 years, bringing this country on a par with Italy and France less than a hundred years after William Rush turned from carving ship figure-heads. It was a century of dizzying progress in all the arts in America. Augustus Saint-Gaudens led the way, and he widely popularized sculpture in a way no one before or since has: through the production of his High Relief twenty dollar gold piece. High Relief twenties have an instantly recognizable sculptural quality, a quality immediately evident on this Gem. The main design elements are boldly set apart from the fields. The mint luster on this piece is bright and satiny, and there are no contact marks of consequence on either side.(Registry values: N7079) (NGC ID# 26F2, PCGS# 9135)

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Auction Dates
August, 2013
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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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