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Rare Superb Gem Proof 1912 Indian Head Quarter Eagle1912 $2 1/2 PR67 PCGS. The 1912 proof Indian Head quarter eagle had a mintage of 197 pieces. Attrition was heavy in this year, however, and the original mintage figure bears only a partial relationship to the number of survivors today. Akers was only able to trace 19 auction records for this date in the 30 years he surveyed for his work. The total number of survivors is probably in the neighborhood of 65 to 75 pieces.
A matte or sandblast finish was seen on gold proofs of this year, but is different from the matte or sandblast finish of proofs from 1908 and 1911. Writing in his Encyclopedia of United States and Colonial Proof Coins, 1722-1989 (1989), Walter Breen commented: "Fine sandblast finish. Different from all previous matte coins; under a microscope the surfaces show millions of minute shiny facets. Much rarer than its mintage figure would suggest."
This piece features fine-grained surfaces that display a beautiful matte texture and even, light khaki coloration. The obverse is virtually flawless, and the reverse also comes close to being pristine. The fully articulated design elements are sharp and clear throughout, except only for the slightest weakness on the eagle's breast and left (facing) leg feathers. The specialist in proof Indian Head gold coinage could spend many years searching for a finer example: Only a single coin (also in the present auction) is graded finer. Census: 8 in 67, 1 finer (10/06).
From The Dr. Robert J. Loewinger Collection.(Registry values: N7079) (NGC ID# 7JYU, PCGS# 7961)
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