The Eliasberg 1899-S Half Eagle, MS691899-S $5 MS69 NGC. Ex: Eliasberg. Like many of the late 19th and early 20th century coins from the famed Louis E. Eliasberg, Sr. Collection, this piece was obtained at face value by John M. Clapp directly from the San Francisco Mint. It is the most pristine example of the type this cataloger has ever seen, and is certainly the finest example of the date that we have ever seen or handled. It is the finest certified by either service (the only close competition is a single PCGS MS68, with no other examples graded by either service above MS66), and is among the finest known specimens for the type.
The surfaces display intense luster with a reflective quality that is highly unusual for the issue, indicating that this piece was indeed a "special" coin set aside for an important collector. The strike is impeccable, sharp enough that it compares to many proofs of the era in this respect. A long, hard look at the surfaces under magnification does reveal a couple (literally, only a couple) of tiny, nearly insignificant abrasions. One tiny toning spot just in front of Liberty's upper lip is mentioned for accuracy and provides an easy pedigree marker for this important numismatic treasure. A stunning coin that is equal in importance alongside the Eliasberg 1899-S eagle MS69 NGC also offered in this sale, and is certainly the most important 1899-S half eagle that we have ever had the pleasure to offer. This piece is one of three certified MS69 for the entire type at NGC. We should also mention this is the plate coin in United States Coinage: A Study by Type by Jeff Garrett and Ron Guth. Population: 1 in 69, 0 finer (11/09).
Ex: San Francisco Mint, December 1899, at face value; John M. Clapp; John H. Clapp; Clapp Estate (1942); Louis E. Eliasberg, Sr.; United States Gold Coin Collection (Eliasberg Collection, Bowers and Ruddy, 10/1982), lot 599.
From The Atherton Family Collection.(Registry values: P2) (NGC ID# 25YT, PCGS# 8399)
Weight: 8.36 grams
Metal: 90% Gold, 10% Copper
Learn more at the Newman Numismatic Portal at Washington University in St. Louis.
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