1881 $20 MS61 PCGS. Only 2,220 circulation strike 1881 ...
Finest Known, Exceedingly Rare 1881 Twenty Dollar Coin1881 $20 MS61 PCGS. Only 2,220 circulation strike 1881 double eagles were produced. Approximately 25-35 pieces are known today with most of these grading XF40 to AU50. In the middle to higher AU grades, the 1881 is extremely rare and the only pieces to have been encapsulated as Uncirculated (as of March 2004) are the PCGS MS60 that we auctioned for $29,235 in our 1997 ANA Sale and this specimen, the finest known to either service.
Recent sales records include an example cataloged as "Brilliant Uncirculated" in the October 2001 Dallas Bank Collection Sale which brought $21,850, a PCGS AU50 that realized $14,950 in our February 2001 Long Beach Sale, and a PCGS AU55 that garnered $14,950 in the October 1999 Bass II Sale. Considering the unquestioned rarity of this issue (and the great popularity of this series), it remains extremely undervalued in our opinion.
The surfaces of this piece are unquestionably original with a bit of the "dirty gold" appearance seen on so many Double Eagles from this era. Probably struck from a later state of the dies, there is little evidence of the original prooflike finish in the fields--a trait seen on all Twenties of this issue to one degree or another. Well struck, numerous small and medium sized contact marks litter the surfaces, these being the grade-limiting factors. A very special opportunity for the advanced U.S. gold enthusiast. (#8994) (Registry values: N1) (NGC ID# 26BC, PCGS# 8994)
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