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Near-Gem 1932 Saint-Gaudens Double Eagle

1932 $20 MS64 PCGS. This is the final collectible issue of the Saint-Gaudens double eagle series. Only a single 1933 double eagle is legal to own, thus all other collectors must conclude their collection with this rarity. The original mintage was a little over 1 million coins, but nearly all of the mintage was melted later in the decade, and today there are probably not more than 100 of these coins in existence. Over the years, various estimates have been suggested, ranging from a low of 20 to 25 coins estimated by Walter Breen in his Complete Encyclopedia, to a high of 115 coins, an optimistic estimate by our own cataloging staff. Anytime a 1932 double eagle appears in the marketplace, it is a cause for celebration among double eagle specialists.
Nearly every surviving example of this date is Mint State, and the finest of these is an example that resides in the Smithsonian Institution, considered to be a Superb Gem by those who have seen it. To date, 122 examples of this issue have been certified by PCGS and NGC, and the average grade of those coins is MS64 (specifically 64.18), meaning that this coin is an "average" example. There has never been a circulated example of this date graded by either of these two grading services.
The example that we are now offering is a remarkable near-Gem with frosty luster on both sides. It has fully brilliant and splendid yellow-gold surfaces with a hint of pale rose color. The reverse has a small dark spot near the border at 8 o'clock. This might serve as a convenient pedigree marker for the interested student. Most of the design elements are nicely brought up, with only a few indications of weakness, including Liberty's head and the eagle's lower feathers. Although a few abrasions are hidden within the devices, the surfaces are relatively mark-free, and the fields are exceptionally clean. This date appears for sale infrequently, thus the present opportunity should be considered carefully. Population: 23 in 64, 22 finer (7/06).(Registry values: N7079) (NGC ID# 26GR, PCGS# 9194)

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Auction Dates
September, 2006
13th-16th Wednesday-Saturday
Internet/Mail/Phone Bids: 4
Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
Page Views: 1,152

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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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