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Uncommon Mint State Type Two Twenty
1871 Double Eagle, MS64, Tied for Finest

1871 $20 MS64 PCGS. Type Two twenties of any date are scarce to rare in mint condition, and type collectors cannot be too picky as a rule. The 1871 is not one of the usual suspects for a type piece. The mintage is the lowest of the type with only 80,120 pieces struck, and it does not appear to have been sent to Europe and repatriated like other issues, such as the 1867 and 1873 Open 3.
Of the 360 submission events recorded by both PCGS and NGC, there is a distinct dropoff in availability above the AU58 threshold. A mere 25 pieces have been certified in MS60 or finer grades (4/11). There are five MS64 grading events for the 1871, representing from three to five actual coins. We first thought this had to be the Browning coin, as that piece has semiprooflike fields also. However, it does not plate-match to that coin, as it lacks the tiny planchet flake out of the obverse field above star 2, and it has a more substantial flake in the field to the left of the truncation of the bust.
This is an extraordinary example not only of an 1871 but of any Type Two twenty. The fields are bright and semiprooflike. The strike is strong throughout, with uncommonly pronounced hair detail surrounding Liberty's face. Only a few tiny disturbances in the fields are noted on each side, and close examination shows them to be tiny planchet flakes, for the most part. The centers are bright yellow-gold, surrounded by deep orange-gold at the margins. Population: 2 in 64, 0 finer (4/11).
Ex: FUN Signature (Heritage, 1/2011), lot 5262, which realized $63,250.(Registry values: P6) (NGC ID# 26AA, PCGS# 8960)

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Auction Dates
June, 2011
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 4
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