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Description

Sparkling 1931 Gem Double Eagle

1931 $20 MS65 PCGS. Among Saint-Gaudens Double Eagles, the 1931 is considered to be one of the top seven rarest issues in the series, with precious few examples that survived the mass meltings of Twenty Dollar gold pieces minted in the now elusive years of 1929 to 1933. The original mintage of 2,938,250 pieces was apparently almost obliterated by the gold recall of 1933. Experts have speculated over the years which of these later dated issues is now the rarest, and exactly how they should be ranked. The population figures by the major services can sometimes be misleading as to exact rarity, as the same coin may have been submitted to both services at different times, or even the same service multiple times thus causing the published figures to be inflated. As a Gem, however, it seems clear that the 1931 falls into the lower echelon of these rarities.
This beautiful coin is a sparkling Gem in every sense of the word. The luster is frosty and entirely unbroken by any stacking or cabinet friction. Only the most trivial luster grazes are seen on each side that serve to limit the grade on this appealing specimen. A couple of shades of even, peach-gold patina bathe each side. The strike is well brought up, with Liberty's fingers and the Capitol dome revealing nice definition. The reverse field is free of the often-seen die break through the eagle's beak (or it may be from another set of dies altogether). There are also no bothersome alloy spots, the latter of which are also an unfortunate companion to many survivors of this issue. A few minute marks scattered over the obverse are mentioned for accuracy. Population: 24 in 65, 9 finer (11/05).(Registry values: N10218) (NGC ID# 26GN, PCGS# 9192)

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Auction Dates
January, 2006
3rd-7th
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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