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1907 Wire Rim Ten, MS64
The Usual Bright Surfaces
More Colorful Than Usually Seen

1907 $10 Wire Rim MS64 PCGS Secure. Regardless of whether one considers the 1907 Wire Rim tens as patterns or part of the regularly collected series, they are near the head of the pack in rarity and desirability to most collectors.

The net survival of the issue was 472 pieces only, according to recent research by Roger Burdette. Five-hundred pieces were struck in August and September 1907, with another 42 struck between October and December of that year. The 70 pieces remaining unsold in 1915 were melted, giving a net of 472 coins.

Art critic Cornelius Vermeule, never one to spare artistic feelings, wrote in the second edition of his classic Numismatic Art in America these words concerning the 1907 Saint-Gaudens eagle design:

"The eagle with the head of Liberty in an Indian bonnet and a standing eagle recalling the bird of Ptolemaic [sic] missed being a great coin because Roosevelt interfered in the choice of the headdress (or no headdress) for Liberty. The preliminary studies for the coin avoided this nonsensical bit of Americana, one that recalls the fancy feathers worn by Liberty standing on a plinth inscribed E PLURIBUS UNUM atop the dome of the Capitol."

The obverse of the ten dollar gold piece was a reuse of the NIKH-EIPHNH (Nike-Eirene or Victory-Peace) medal (depicted in the Vermeule reference, figure 134), a profile rendering of the Victory figure that fronts Saint-Gaudens' famous General Sherman Monument in New York City's Central Park. The artist used the same figure, striding forward, on the twenty dollar.

The eagle on the reverse of the ten dollar gold piece is an adaptation of the one previously used on the reverse of Roosevelt's inaugural medal (Vermeule, figure 119), a remarkable composition of aquiline strength and grace that the Wire Rim twenties exhibit in all its original splendor.

This particular coin exhibits the always seen swirling die polish lines in the field, a feature that adds unusual brightness to Wire Rim tens. Usually these pieces are found with yellow-gold surfaces, but this example has taken on a slight accent of reddish patina. The portrait of Liberty shows a slight, ever-so-subtle accent of lilac which adds even more visual interest. The only marks of any note are a short planchet depression between the coronet and star 2 on the obverse, and on the reverse there is a slight area of scuffing to the left of the eagle's left (facing) leg. Exceptional mint luster and overall quality.(Registry values: N7079) (NGC ID# 26F2, PCGS# 8850)

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Auction Dates
July, 2014
10th-13th Thursday-Sunday
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 10
Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
Page Views: 2,283

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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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