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1883-O Eagle, AU55
Rarest New Orleans Eagle, Standout Example

1883-O $10 AU55 NGC. The 1883-O eagle is the rarest New Orleans eagle, according to Doug Winter, who ranks it first in overall rarity as well as first in high-grade rarity in his series reference on New Orleans Mint gold coins (second edition, 2006). Of the 800 pieces originally struck, Winter estimates that today 35 to 45 pieces survive in all grades, and perhaps six to nine pieces in high grades (AU50 and above).

The certified population data for this issue must be viewed guardedly, as it a virtual certainty that they are littered with resubmissions, crackouts, and duplicates. They are best viewed as merely another data point in determining the real rarity of the issue. For what it is worth, NGC shows three submissions in the AU55 grade of the present piece, with five finer (1/14). PCGS shows one in AU55 and four finer. The finest certified are four AU58 submissions at PCGS, and one MS61 at NGC.

A more telling data point is likely the frequency of auction appearances. Our most recent offering of an 1883-O eagle in AU55 was at our FUN Signature (Heritage, 1/2011), lot 5209, where another AU55 NGC example brought $63,250. In March 2011, Stack's Bowers offered an AU53 NGC example, lot 6741, which brought $67,333. Before our FUN Signature auction of three-plus years ago, our Permanent Auction Archives show that it was 1995 when we offered an AU58 PCGS example.

This AU55 NGC piece displays excellent eye appeal on surfaces that are well-struck overall, showing light field chatter but no singular marks. Some reflective prooflike texture remains in the protected areas around the device edges. Even in this Bently Collection consignment that is full of remarkable eagle rarities, this piece is a standout coin that will form a centerpiece in a fine collection.
From Christopher Bently's Nob Hill Collection.(Registry values: N4719) (NGC ID# 2668, PCGS# 8701)

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Auction Dates
Feb-Mar, 2014
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 11
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What I most appreciated was how thorough you were when we initially met, how you were conservative in your estimates, not trying to get me to consign by giving false expectations, and then for delivering above and beyond on your commitment to me of a wonderful marketing campaign and a first rate catalog and photos, all of which resulted in a final total price realized that was nicely higher than what you had told me to expect.
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