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1898 Double Eagle, PR66 Deep Cameo
Only 75 Pieces Struck, None Finer at PCGS
Ex: Kern/Pittman

1898 $20 PR66 Deep Cameo PCGS. The 1898 Liberty double eagle boasts a low mintage of just 75 pieces, and the issue is prized for its high quality. By the late 1890s, the Mint had perfected the art of proof coinage, and some of the proofs of that era are a match for the best the Mint produces today. The present coin is certainly a case-in-point, with deeply mirrored fields and richly frosted devices that produce a dramatic Deep Cameo flash when the coin is tilted in the light. The vivid yellow-gold surfaces show just a hint of copper color on the obverse, and the fields are virtually unmarked. Even close inspection with a glass reveals only a few minor hairlines in the fields.
This coin traces its history to the John Jay Pittman Collection, one of the most famous collections of all-time. Pittman was known as a connoisseur, and only the finest coins found a place in his collection. In their Encyclopedia of U.S. Gold Coins 1795-1933, Jeff Garrett and Ron Guth mention this particular coin:

"The John Jay Pittman example is another very choice coin seen by the authors in recent years. It sold for $77,000 in 1997. In 1950, Pittman paid $225 for the piece."

The 1898 proof double eagle has appeared at auction with some frequency in recent years, but many appearances have consisted of mishandled specimens, and only about a half dozen really nice coins have been offered. Most experts agree only 35-40 examples are still extant in all grades. This lot represents an opportunity for the quality-conscious collector that will not be repeated soon. Population: 4 in 66 Deep Cameo, 0 finer (11/11).
Ex: Golden Jubilee Sale (B. Max Mehl, 5/1950), lot 618; John Jay Pittman Collection, Part I (David Akers, 10/1997), lot 1172, realized $77,000.(Registry values: P2) (NGC ID# 26EK, PCGS# 99114)

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Auction Dates
January, 2012
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 9
Members Tracking: N/A
Page Views: 567

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