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    Outstanding Round 1915-S
    Panama-Pacific Fifty, MS65

    1915-S $50 Panama-Pacific 50 Dollar Round MS65 NGC. CAC. Like modern commemoratives celebrating the Olympic Games, many issues in the classic commemorative series mark events happening close to the year of issue, rather than anniversaries. Several early series, including the World's Columbian Exposition coins, the Louisiana Purchase Exposition gold dollars, and the Lewis and Clark Exposition gold dollars, blur the edges of the category, since their respective expositions themselves honored anniversaries of 100 or 400 years.
    By contrast, the Panama-Pacific International Exposition of 1915 celebrated strictly recent events. The rebuilding of San Francisco after the 1906 earthquake figured into the choice of San Francisco to host the World's Fair, as did the construction of the Panama Canal, begun in 1904 and completed in 1914. Still, both developments were fresh in the minds of San Francisco's residents by the time the Exposition opened its doors, particularly the rebuilding; that theme is echoed the name of the "Nine Years After" parade, held at the Exposition in mid-April, a reminder of both all that was lost and how far the city had come.
    Though expositions before and after the Panama-Pacific had commemorative coins issued for them, none of the exposition coinage programs was so ambitious as the one struck in 1915. While the half dollar and gold dollar were cues taken from past expositions' commemoratives, the quarter eagle and especially the round and octagonal fifty dollar coins took the classic commemorative series into uncharted territory.
    While the fifty dollar commemorative coin is an idea that has gone unrepeated in U.S. numismatics, even in the modern era, survivors remain to offer testimony to a singular chapter in the history of American coinage. High-grade coins such as the present Gem, however, have a supply far too small to meet demand. This lovely coin is immensely lustrous with pale canary-yellow surfaces. While the centers show slight striking softness, most visibly at the owl's legs, the overall eye appeal is remarkable. It will be a fortunate bidder who ultimately wins the contest for this coin.
    From The Larry V. Cunningham Collection.(Registry values: N10218) (NGC ID# BYHP, PCGS# 7451)

    Weight: 83.59 grams

    Metal: 90% Gold, 10% Copper

    Learn more at the Newman Numismatic Portal at Washington University in St. Louis.

    View all of [The Larry V. Cunningham Collection ]

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    Auction Dates
    March, 2010
    25th-28th Thursday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 22
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