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    Near-Pristine MCMVII High Relief, PR66
    An Unquestioned Proof Strike

    1907 $20 High Relief PR66 NGC. The 1907 High Reliefs to this day remain a controversial issue when it comes to the proof format, with PCGS refusing to certify such pieces, yet NGC clearly acknowledging them. The present Premium Gem proof certainly bears all the hallmarks of those proofs, including an absolutely full strike throughout both sides. All the pillars of the Capitol building are "countable," to use Breen's phraseology. The surfaces are mostly yellow-gold color complementing a bit of light reddish patina. There is a complete wire rim around the obverse and about half of the reverse.
    Regarding the proof 1907 High Relief twenties, Jeff Garrett, one of the coauthors of Encyclopedia of U.S. Gold Coins 1795-1933, posts these comments on the useful NGC Coin Explorer web site:

    "Around the late 1960s or early 1970s experts began to describe certain 1907 High Relief Double Eagles as Proof. These coins are certainly different, but not exactly like the latter Proof Double Eagles of the series. There are no mintage figures and the origins of the coins are a mystery. The coins have deep swirling die lines and exhibit a satiny surface similar to the Roman finish Proof gold coins. A fairly large number exist and it is my opinion that they are the result of experimentation with the new design by Mint employees. Many, if not the great majority of the original mintage was saved when the 1907 High Reliefs were issued."

    Beyond the full strike and pristine preservation, the present PR66 NGC example also boasts a typical (if that is the right word for such an extraordinarily beautiful finish) satiny surface texture. The swirling die polish lines are abundantly in evidence.
    This PR66 NGC piece is one of 23 submissions in this grade, a total that includes one PR66 and three PR66+ (12/12). But beyond any labels or monikers or plastic encapsulations, this coin is a piece that speaks volumes for itself, with no need for third-party assistance. Only a few trivial contact marks separate this piece from an even finer grade (NGC ID# 28AX, PCGS# 9132)

    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, 2013
    9th-14th Wednesday-Monday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 9
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 804

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    17.5% of the successful bid (minimum $14) per lot.

    Saint-Gaudens Double Eagles as Illustrated by the Phillip H. Morse and Steven Duckor Collections
    Revised Edition by Roger Burdette, and edited by James L. Halperin and Mark Van Winkle

    Saint-Gaudens Double Eagles is an issue-by-issue examination of this 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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