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    1875 Gold Dollar, MS66
    Ex: David Akers, Harry W. Bass, Jr.
    No Superb Gems Known of This Rare Date

    1875 G$1 MS66 PCGS Secure. CAC. Ex: Duckor/Akers/Bass. This beautiful Premium Gem is fully prooflike. The rich orange-gold surfaces contrast against delicate blue overtones and exhibiting excellent field-to-device contrast. A few scattered marks, mostly planchet flakes of Mint origin, prevent a higher grade for this sharply defined example.

    Variety and Die State: Breen-6096. Normal Dies. A short projection or thorn from the bottom of the chin is considered a hallmark of circulation strike 1875 gold dollars. There are no clash marks or other die imperfections noted on this piece, which shows a minute polished area below Liberty's ear. David Akers discovered the distinctive die feature more than 40 years ago, describing the appearance in his 1975 book on gold dollars. Before that time, and even after publication of his book, the deeply mirrored circulation strike coins were often sold as proofs. Fortunately, the practice was stopped with the advent of PCGS and NGC certification.

    Population (6/15): The finest at PCGS are two examples in MS66 and one MS66+. A single MS66 is the best at NGC. Two in this grade have the CAC approval.

    Commentary: Except for the double eagle, all Philadelphia Mint gold issues of 1875 are rare, surviving from extremely low mintages such as just 400 gold dollars. Most surviving Mint State coins are Prooflike, unsurprising given the low mintage from new dies. Dave Bowers suggests that these coins may have been made for collectors. Every example we have encountered has some degree of prooflike surface and most are rather deeply mirrored, classified as "first strikes" from polished dies. Fortunately, differentiating between circulation strikes and proofs is straightforward, as noted in the variety discussion above.

    This example is from the Harry W. Bass, Jr. Collection. Bass was a fan of the 1875 gold dollar and owned three different pieces graded MS65 PCGS, and one graded PR66 PCGS.

    Douglas Winter Commentary: The 1875 is not the rarest Type Three dollar from the Philadelphia Mint (that honor belongs to the 1863) but it is the best known, on account of its incredibly low mintage of only 400 business strikes. There are an estimated 60-80 survivors known, many of them grading in the lower-to-middle Uncirculated range. I believe that there are around seven to nine Gems with the two finest being the MS66+ PCGS-CAC coin in the Simpson Collection (ex: Heritage February 2010, lot 1427 at a record-setting $109,250) and the Duckor coin, purchased from David Akers, graded MS66 by PCGS and CAC-approved. Previously, this coin was one of three Gems (all graded MS65) owned by Harry Bass, and it was hand-selected by Akers as the best of those for inclusion in his personal collection.

    As with all business strikes of this date, the surfaces are nearly fully prooflike. Business strike 1875 dollars show a tiny projection from Liberty's throat; this die characteristic is not found on the rare proofs of this date.

    With the exception of the aforementioned Simpson coin, it has been years since a true Gem 1875 gold dollar in the business strike format has been made available to collectors. This was one of Steve's favorite coins, and it is destined to become a centerpiece of another important collection of gold dollars.

    Provenance: Bowers and Ruddy (privately, 2/28/1973); Harry W. Bass, Jr. (Bowers and Merena, 10/1999), lot 194; purchased from David Akers.
    From The Duckor Family Collection of Gold Dollars.(Registry values: N1)

    Coin Index Numbers: (NGC ID# 25DD, PCGS# 7576)

    Weight: 1.67 grams

    Metal: 90% Gold, 10% Copper

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

    View all of [The Duckor Family Collection of Gold Dollars ]

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    August, 2015
    12th-16th Wednesday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 16
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,845

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