The 1914 is the next to the last year the matte process of proofing was employed in the U.S. mint. Breen notes in his 1988 Encyclopedia that the proofs of this year have a coarser sandblast finish than on the previous two years. However, when placed under a microscope we were unable to tell a qualitative difference as he notes. The finish appears virtually identical to previous years with the primary difference being in color and overall brightness of surfaces. This 1914 does indeed have lighter colored surfaces that lack most of the green-gold color seen on the PCGS Proof 67 1913. It seems to have bit of reddish-gold color and is considerably brighter than the previous two years.
The surfaces appear to be nearly flawless. The most noticeable flaw is a series of tiny planchet flakes between stars 9 and 10. Exceptional quality, this is one of only four pieces to have been so graded by both of the major certification services according to the April data (the other three Proof 66 coins are also NGC certified). (PCGS# 8545)
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