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Description

1907 Wire Rim Ten, MS64+
Saint-Gaudens' Original, Unmodified Design

1907 $10 Wire Rim MS64+ PCGS. CAC. "A full face in the medallion is too much for the gods."
--Augustus Saint-Gaudens

Saint-Gaudens produced numerous hand-cut cameos in his youth, which is most likely how he came to the opinion in the above quote. Throughout his long career he produced numerous bas-reliefs and a few medallions before working on the ten and twenty dollar gold pieces. He was able to adhere to his maxim for the twenty dollar design by using the full figure of Liberty, reduced in size and striding in the distance with Liberty is striding "full faced" toward the viewer. The ten dollar design is done in profile, and based on the well-defined profile of Liberty taken from the Sherman Monument. A reduced bust of this Victory figure was later marketed as Nike (one of which is in the ANS holdings). The portrait of Liberty seen initially on the Wire Rim tens was actually years in the making and based on an amalgam of as many as three models. When these pieces were released they lacked a determinate rim, an oversight by Saint-Gaudens, and a necessary feature that protects the inner design of a coin. Wire Rim tens also have an unusual brightness, created by numerous swirling die polishing marks on each side. These features were later modified for the regular production coin, leaving only 500 of these specially created coins as mementoes of Saint-Gaudens' original intent. This piece has the customary yellow-gold color and there are just a few contact marks that prevent an even higher grade.(Registry values: N7079) (NGC ID# 26F2, PCGS# 8850)

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Auction Dates
June, 2011
1st-5th
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 7
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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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