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    1873 Open 3 Twenty, MS65+
    An Extraordinary Gem Type Two Coin

    1873 $20 Open 3 MS65+ NGC. What most collectors know about the 1873 Open 3 twenty is what Paul Green wrote in Numismatic News several years ago:

    "Most collectors are simply content with any 1873 and the open '3' variety is readily available. In most cases the available grades tend to stop at About Uncirculated although in some lower Mint State examples are also found with some regularity."

    If one needs a nice Type Two twenty, the 1873 Open 3 is the issue. Hundreds of coins have been certified in MS62 and MS63. Above that level, at the MS64 plateau, only seven coins have been graded by both of the major services (five at PCGS and two at NGC). This is the only coin to carry the Plus designation that indicates an upper-end coin for the grade.
    This coin's quality presents a conundrum. This issue was absent in the major shipwreck recoveries (Republic, Central America, and Brother Jonathan). And frankly, it looks too nice to have come out of a European bank holding. So what is the source of this magnificent coin? If it has been in major collections since the year of issue it has been quietly held, because we can find no auction records of such a coin.
    The surfaces are extraordinary. Whether they are measured against a Gem 1904 or one of the MS65 Type One shipwreck coins, this coin is simply immense. The mint luster is softly frosted, as one would expect from a Philadelphia product. The strike is strong throughout, if not quite complete over all the high points, and the color is medium orange-gold. A couple of tiny marks within the right (facing) scroll and a couple of grease specks on each side are all the aid one has in tracing the pedigree of this Gem. In the entire run of Type Two twenties, NGC has only certified two other MS65s and there is a single MS67. It will be interesting to see how highly bidders value this exceptional piece.(Registry values: N10218)

    Coin Index Numbers: (NGC ID# 26AH, PCGS# 8967)

    Weight: 33.44 grams

    Metal: 90% Gold, 10% Copper

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

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    January, 2011
    5th-9th Wednesday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 11
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 2,039

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