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Cameo Gem Proof 1858 Three Dollar
Perhaps a Dozen Known

1858 $3 PR65 Cameo NGC. The mass marketing and sale of proof U.S. coinage generally is held to have begun in 1858, but the effects were seen largely with minor and silver coinage. The gold proofs of 1858 may have increased in production compared to their predecessors, but that is as far as the comparisons go because the initial outputs were so small that speaking of an increase is tantamount to sophistry. Garrett and Guth claim that "as many as 10 to 12 1858 $3 gold pieces are known," but this is not a significant increase compared to predecessor issues such as 1856 and 1857 and might even be a step down from the proof output in 1854.

NGC and PCGS have combined to grade this issue seven times in a non-impaired state. Three certification events exist for this issue at the PR65 level -- one without a Cameo designation at PCGS, two with Cameo at NGC -- and there are none numerically finer (3/13). Whether one or two of these events represent a resubmission is unknown, as the date does not cross the block often; in fact, this is the first time Heritage has offered a Gem proof representative of the date in one of its auctions.

This specimen is intricately detailed and pleasingly contrasted, though the honey-gold mirrors are a trifle watery and the frost over the devices carries the weight. A few wispy hairlines, most short, a few longer, are present in the obverse fields, accounting for the grade, though the reverse is cleaner. A coin of great attractiveness and importance that provides a remarkable opportunity for the collector of 19th century proof gold.(Registry values: N10218) (NGC ID# 289W, PCGS# 88021)

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Auction Dates
April, 2013
24th-28th Wednesday-Sunday
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 10
Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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