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Description

Incredible 1907 Wire Rim Eagle, MS65+
The Second Frank A. Leach Specimen

1907 $10 Wire Rim MS65+ NGC. The original mintage was 542 coins for the 1907 Wire Rim ten, but 70 were apparently melted around World War I, leaving a net production of 472 pieces. The Rounded Rim or Rolled Rim has an even smaller net production, at 50 pieces after the other 31,450 produced were destroyed due to the impracticality of their design. Many numismatists consider both varieties to be patterns (and they are listed in the popular pattern references by Judd and Pollock), but they have both long been collected as integral parts of the Saint-Gaudens eagle series.
Akers points out that collectors are especially keen on acquiring examples of the 1907 Wire Rim, as it is the "only issue available to collectors that shows Augustus Saint-Gaudens' original design for this coin." He also points out that none were released to the general public:

"Most examples are Mint State, as befits an issue that was distributed solely to VIPs, private collectors and museums. There are even some extraordinary Superb Gems, their surfaces essentially as struck with pristine, virtually blemish-free features."


Although the pattern-versus-regular-issue debate has engendered a second debate about whether the Wire Rims were produced in proof or business strike format, there appears to be no such confusion at NGC or PCGS, which certifies both the Wire Rim and Rolled Rim versions using the Mint State scale rather than that for proofs. Nonetheless, the Wire Rim pieces typically show random, swirling raised die polishing lines, much the same as seen on the 1907 High Relief twenties. Many examples seen of the issue, as a result of the unusual distribution, show memorable surface preservation that complements the genius of the original Saint-Gaudens design.
Fully brilliant straw-gold surfaces exhibit the unusual luster of all pristine Wire Rim eagles that results from the extensive die polish lines in the fields. This piece has a bold strike, even down to the period after LIBERTY. The wire rim is boldly evident around most of the obverse and reverse rims, with a small blemish at 12 o'clock on the reverse. Identification characteristics include a small disturbance on the third feather of the headdress and a tiny patch of chatter marks just inside the reverse border at about 8:30.
Ex: Frank Aleamon Leach; Abraham Powell Leach; Florence Gertrude Leach; Col. George Monroe.
From The Colonel George M. Monroe Collection.
See lots 5221, 5223, 5238, and 5305 for additional gold coins with the Leach provenance.

Abraham (Abe) Powell Leach was the second of four sons born to Frank Leach and Mary Powell Leach in Oakland, California, on July 27, 1873, and died in Contra Costa, California, on May 5, 1962. He married Freda Curdts (1874-1959) in 1901, and they had a son, Abraham P. Leach, Jr. (1903-1949). He married Florence Plant in 1960.
Abraham, Sr., received his law degree from the University of California (Berkeley) in May 1895. He was admitted to the California Bar in 1895 and practiced law in California for more than 50 years, serving as prosecuting attorney for Oakland from 1898 to 1907. He later founded an investment firm, Insurance Securities, Inc. He was a Mason, a member of the Nile Club, and served 11 years as president of the Oakland Boy Scout Council.
Col. George Monroe, consignor to the present sale notes: "He was asked to run for governor by the California Republican Party but turned them down. Parties at his house in Danville, California, were attended by a Who's Who of California politicians, businessmen, and Boy Scouts of America senior leaders." It is said that he was defined by his generosity and kindness.(Registry values: N7079) (NGC ID# 268B, PCGS# 8850)

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Auction Info

Auction Dates
January, 2011
5th-9th
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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Needless to say I was overwhelmed by the results of the auction and I truly believe it was Jill’s efforts in promoting and displaying the piece that brought in the extra value.
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