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1895 Double Eagle, PR64 Deep Cameo
Stunning, Heavily Contrasted Proof
Only 18 to 21 Estimated Extant in All Grades

1895 $20 PR64 Deep Cameo PCGS. CAC. In January 1895, the U.S. government nearly ran out of gold. In A Guide Book of Double Eagle Gold Coins, David Bowers recounts, "The gold reserve, intended to be $100,000,000 as a backing for paper money, had dribbled down to the less than 8 millions in available gold coin in the Sub-Treasury of New York. That very day more than $3 million in gold was withdrawn from the Sub-Treasury in New York for export to Europe." Treasury officials estimated that the reserve would be completely depleted within 48 hours. Facing bankruptcy and depreciated currency, the government turned to a consortium of New York bankers led by J.P. Morgan for relief. Meeting in great secrecy, the financiers agreed to help, and more than $8 million dollars in gold coins was deposited in the Sub-Treasury by February 13,1895. A panic was averted, and the Mint proceeded to coin 1.1 million business strike double eagles in 1895.
The acute shortage of gold coins in the government's reserves had a profound effect on priorities at the Mint in 1895. Resources were devoted almost exclusively to business strike coinage. No patterns were produced, and proof coinage of the double eagle was limited to a paltry 51 pieces. Today perhaps half that number survive, with several specimens impounded in institutional collections and many are seen in impaired condition. A search of auction records reveals that Heritage has handled two other 1895 proof twenties in the last decade. The most recent was a PR64 Cameo in February of this year, but certified by NGC, a coin that brought $71,875. Other significant specimens known include the PR65 Garrett/Bass coin and the Gem proof Pittman example.
This PR64 Deep Cameo example offers glorious orange-gold coloration with premium eye appeal. The primary pedigree markers are a tiny, triangular planchet indentation to the left of the 1 in the date, possibly as produced. A series of near-microscopic, dotlike ticks appear in a straight line before Liberty's lower nose and star 4. Another contact mark is noted on the reverse, just below ED. Again, these tiny markers are mentioned only for pedigree purposes. Much more importantly, the strike is expectedly bold, with generous field-device contrast yielding the coveted black-on-gold appearance. The appeal of this stunning rare coin is strictly high-end. Expect a premium bid to win this prize.
Ex: Dallas Signature (Heritage, 10/2008), lot 2418, as a PCGS PR64 Cameo.(Registry values: P2) (PCGS# 99111)

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Auction Dates
March, 2012
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 7
Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
Page Views: 661

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