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1921 Saint-Gaudens Double Eagle, MS62
'Classic Rarity' in Mint State

1921 $20 MS62 PCGS. There are only approximately 150 known survivors from the 1921 Philadelphia Mint issue as the vast majority of the 528,500 coins minted were melted during the 1930s. Unlike some of the later Saint-Gaudens issues, there have been no discoveries of any hoards in Europe or elsewhere in the intervening decades.

The 1921 Double Eagles were only produced at the Philadelphia Mint and they were the sole gold coin denomination minted that year at any of the U.S. Mint facilities.

The 1920s were bookended by a pair of economic depressions. The second, the Great Depression, is far more famous and linked to the late-date Saint-Gaudens double eagles from 1929 on, all of which were heavily melted and difficult to obtain today in varying degrees. At the start of the 1920s, however, the United States was experiencing an economic downturn following World War I. As seen with other major wars, when the period of wartime production ended, a series of shocks hit the economy: manufacturers of tin-hats and M1903 Springfield rifles saw their orders plummet, for example, and formerly conscripted soldiers returned to civilian life, resulting in a glut of labor and the failure of many men to find work right away.

PCGS has graded only 20 examples of the 1921 Double Eagle at the MS62 level, with just 17 finer, while NGC has graded 13 at this level, with only 8 finer (11/13).

Two superb gem examples reside in institutional collections. One belongs to the Smithsonian Institution and the other is part of the American Numismatic Society collection. Both of those coins were obtained from the U.S. Mint at the time of issue.

The issue is known for a sharp strike and either frosty or satiny luster, with this coin exhibiting strong definition overall and satin luster. Attractive light gold color adds to the visual appeal of this piece. The scattered marks present do not pose a distraction on this classic rarity.(Registry values: N10218) (NGC ID# 26G2, PCGS# 9172)

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Auction Dates
January, 2014
8th-12th Wednesday-Sunday
Internet/Mail/Phone Bids: 7
Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
Page Views: 624

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The Coinage of Augustus Saint-Gaudens as Illustrated by the Morse and Duckor Collections
Revised Edition by James L. Halperin, Mark R. Borckardt, Mark Van Winkle, Jon Amato, and Gregory J. Rohan, with special contributor David W. Akers

The Coinage of Augustus Saint-Gaudens is an issue-by-issue examination of these two artistically inspired series of gold coins. Each date and mintmark is reviewed with up-to-date information, much of which has never been previously published. The book is based on two extraordinary collections: The Phillip H. Morse collection and the Dr. and Mrs. Steven L. Duckor collection.

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