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    1913 Ten Dollar Indian, PR68
    Immaculate Surfaces, Only 71 Proofs Struck

    1913 $10 PR68 NGC. Predictably, as the face value of each coinage denomination increases the number minted decreases; likewise, today's auction prices increase because of increased rarity and increased popularity of larger denomination coins. Only 71 proof tens were struck in 1913. To continue the increase / decrease theme, the mintage was undoubtedly also low because of the collecting public's increasing weariness with the unfamiliar sandblast finish seen on gold coins beginning in 1908. In that initial year, there were 116 proof tens struck. The number produced decreased steadily (except for the anomalous 204 pieces struck in 1910). In his new reference on proof gold, John Dannreuther comments on the popularity of the matte finish then and now:

    "The miniscule production of all Matte Proof gold coins speaks volumes about the acceptance by collectors of the day -- or rather, their lack of acceptance. Despite their unpopularity during their day, collectors today are enthralled with the myriad looks of Matte Proof gold."

    The reason collectors concentrate so on the color (look) of matte proofs is because there is such a wide range of colors available, and all are within the gold color spectrum. For instance, if the dates were covered it would be easy to tell a 1908 from, say, a 1913. The 1908 will consistently display a deep khaki-gold color, while a 1913 is generally referred to as having a mustard color, some even specifically naming Dijon mustard as the identifying color.

    Thousands and thousands of microscopic grains make up the matte surface of this proof, each grain has its own individual sparkle, but each grain also disperses light in a different direction. It is a finish unlike any seen on any other U.S. coin. The PR68 grade says all that needs to be said about the preservation of the surfaces. They are immaculate, not even a single pedigree identifier can be located. This piece is as close to locating a matte proof gold piece in the condition it left the Mint in 1913. This is definitely a coin worthy of serious consideration, even by non-gold collectors, and it is also worth stretching to acquire.(Registry values: N10218) (NGC ID# 28HH, PCGS# 8895)

    Weight: 16.72 grams

    Metal: 90% Gold, 10% Copper

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

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    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    January, 2019
    9th-14th Wednesday-Monday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 18
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 597

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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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