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1929 Half Eagle, MS63
Rarest Series Issue Overall

1929 $5 MS63 PCGS. CAC. The 1929 half eagle is the overall rarest date in its series. It was the first issue struck in the Indian Head five dollar series since the singleton San Francisco striking of 13 years previous, the 1916-S. The 1929 half eagle would also constitute the last issue in the series, as later in the year the horrid stock market crash culminating on Black Tuesday, October 29, 1929, would usher in the Great Depression. It is noteworthy that the peak level that the Dow Jones Industrial Average achieved on September 3, 1929, of 381.17, would not be seen again after the crash for a quarter-century -- until November 23, 1954.

The mintage of the 1929 half eagles was large for the era, at 662,000 pieces, but a far smaller, yet unknown number were ever actually released from Treasury vaults, where the majority languished until being melted after the Gold Recall of 1933. Only a handful of coins are certified below the MS60 level, and most of the survivors grade somewhere between MS60 and MS64. There are also only a handful of Gem survivors, and anything finer than MS65 is unknown.

The present Select Mint State example, certified by PCGS, is in the median grade for the issue, although there are also quite a number of near-Gem coins. This piece shows overall antique-gold color with some smoke-gray accents and scattered small marks on the Indian's cheek and jawline and before the profile, none overly distracting and in line with the grade. The strike is a bit soft on the high points of the headdress and on the lowest bear claw on the necklace. The reverse is both better-struck and relatively less abraded.(Registry values: N4719) (NGC ID# 28E2, PCGS# 8533)

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Auction Dates
March, 2013
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 7
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