1908 $5 PR67 NGC....
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|Auction Ended On:||Mar 29, 2009|
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Sheraton Inner Harbor
Some who ordered the new Indian half eagle proofs were surely surprised when they received and examined their specimens. Unlike prior designs, the devices were sunken into the field, with the high points at the same level as the field. These designs are often referred to as incuse, but this is a misnomer, since an incuse design would have opposite relief, with areas such as the cheekbone the lowest point of the design, instead of the highest. The proof finish of the Indian half eagle was also dramatically different than the Liberty type. Proof Liberty half eagles have mirrored fields and (at times) frosty devices, similar to the proof gold American Eagles in production today. The proof Indian and Saint-Gaudens types are matte proofs, with the same microgranular finish on both the fields and devices.
Proof Indian half eagles are easily distinguished from their business strike counterparts. The color is comparatively dark, since the fields lack reflectivity, and luster is diffused. Since the pieces were well made, the abrasions that plague bag-stored business strikes are absent on proofs. Finally, the proofs are fully struck, the extra detail most noticeable on the eagle's shoulder and the lower reaches of the headdress. The present piece shows all of these characteristics, and is essentially perfect, save for a tiny Mint-made planchet flaw located directly beneath, but relatively distant from, the U in TRUST. This minuscule flaw serves as an identifier for any auction appearances. Census: 11 in 67, 1 finer (2/09).(Registry values: N10218) (PCGS# 8539)
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