1853 Round Gold Dollar, AU Details
1853 $1 Liberty Round 1 Dollar, BG-604, R.8 -- Obverse Damage --
NGC Details. AU. Period One round dollars are recognized as the
rarest of the California pioneer gold issues. Leading researchers
in the field believe that roughly 35,000 fractional gold pieces
survive of all types from both periods, but only 50 of those coins
represent Period One round dollars. Moreover, the BG-604 variety,
discovered by David Proskey in 1884, is arguably the most desirable
round dollar issue. It is the only one with an eagle motif on the
reverse. The obverse features a Large Head portrait of Liberty as
on BG-411 to BG-414, initials G.G. below the bust (struck by
Frontier & Deviercy for Gaime, Guillemot, & Co.), and 13
stars around the borders.
Legendary BG-604 Rarity, Only Two Known
First Auction Appearance in 60 Years
Merely two examples are known. The other example is an MS62 PCGS coin formerly of the F.C.C. Boyd, Jay Roe, and William H. LaBelle, Sr. Collections. Jay Roe purchased the piece from Goliad Corporation via Mike Brownlee in 1991 for a then-astonishing sum of $100,000. This AU Details example, the plate coin in the first edition of the Breen-Gillio reference, has an equally impressive pedigree. In 1934, T. James Clarke acquired it from the Waldo Newcomer estate for $100. The coin subsequently sold as lot 683 in the 47th New Netherlands Sale (4/1956), realizing $200. Breen-Gillio cites a communication between Kenneth W. Lee and Bill O'Connor, noting this BG-604 gold dollar formed part of the Donald R. Hyink Collection. An example appeared in the A.G. Heaton Collection, probably one of the two traced pieces. Remarkably, this represents the coin's first auction appearance in nearly 60 years.
Small field digs between star 5 and the nose serve as pedigree markers and account for the Details grade. The centers, though somewhat softly struck, display only minor friction over the devices. Lustrous, yellow and green-gold surfaces are partially prooflike with lightly scattered marks. We predict fierce competition for this legendary rarity.
Ex: Possibly John W. Scott, possibly A.G. Heaton; Waldo C. Newcomer; T. James Clarke Collection / 47th Sale (New Netherlands, 4/1956), lot 683; Donald R. Hyink Collection.
From The Elbert Henry Gary Collection.
Learn more at the Newman Numismatic Portal at Washington University in St. Louis.
View all of [The Elbert Henry Gary Collection ]
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