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Rare 1929 Gem Double Eagle

1929 $20 MS65 PCGS. Beginning with this date, all issues in the Saint-Gaudens double eagle series are notable rarities. Of the five collectible issues (1929, 1930-S, 1931, 1931-D, and 1932), the 1929 is the most obtainable with respect to overall availability. David Bowers (2004), writing about the 1929 in his 2004 treatise entitled A Guide Book of Double Eagle Gold Coins, elaborates on this date's availability:

"A very scarce issue that a few years ago was considered to be a major rarity. However, many hundreds of coins now have sneaked into the market, without fanfare ... . For the first time in modern numismatic history the 1929 is readily available and somewhat affordable (but hardly inexpensive). Now, many collections will end with the 1929 date instead of 1928 as formerly."

As reported by Jeff Garrett and Ron Guth in their 2006 book Encyclopedia of U.S. Gold Coins, 1795-1933: "A small hoard of 40 coins was discovered in 1984 in England, and author Jeff Garrett purchased a small group of 10 coins in the early 1990s." We are not aware of any other sizable holdings of this issue that have been uncovered recently.
PCGS and NGC have, to date, certified approximately 280 1929 double eagles, ranging in grades from AU55 to MS66. The vast majority of these are MS62 to MS64. The two services have seen 26 MS65 pieces, and six Premium Gems. Some of these specimens are likely resubmissions.
The Gem coin in this lot is highly lustrous and possesses frosty peach-gold surfaces. A well-executed strike translates to sharp definition on the design features, including Liberty's head and the fingers on both hands, the panes in the Capitol building, and the eagle's plumage. A few minute marks are visible, but are well within the parameters of the MS65 grade classification. Copper alloy spots, often seen on this issue, are not present on this coin. This is an excellent opportunity for the Saint-Gaudens enthusiast to acquire one of the rarer dates in the series.(Registry values: N7079) (NGC ID# 26GL, PCGS# 9190)

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Auction Dates
August, 2007
8th-12th Wednesday-Sunday
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 7
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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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