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    High-End PR65 1911 Indian Five Dollar

    1911 $5 PR65 PCGS. The recorded proof mintage figures of Indian half eagles is staggering low to begin with, but in reality the survival rate of these interesting issues is less than one would expect for coins that were specially prepared for collectors. Breen, in his Complete Encyclopedia (1988), states that the proofs of 1908-15 are "much rarer than those of the preceding decade, and rarer than their reported mintages suggest. Doubtless heirs mistakenly spent some, and turned in others during the Great Recall of 1934." The PCGS Population Report reflects this sentiment, showing a total of only 26 proof 1911 fives in all grades (3/08).
    1907 was the final year of the Liberty gold issues and also gold coinage in brilliant proof format. Roger Burdette, in his Renaissance of American Coinage (2006), sheds light on the reason for the change: "In 1907, the Saint-Gaudens designs were adopted for the eagle and double eagle. Due to die curvature and texture of the field, polishing the dies to make brilliant proofs was not practical. A similar situation occurred in 1908 with the Pratt-designed half and quarter eagle." To address this problem, the Philadelphia Mint employed a technique of sandblasting the dies used to strike proof coins in 1908. The resulting finish on the proofs was that of a matte texture, hence the term "matte proof." The Mint's experimentation with matte proof finishes in 1908 was not well received by collectors and was abandoned that year, at least temporarily. After experimenting with Roman Finish (satin) proofs in 1909 and 1910, the Mint returned to the dark matte finishes (as found on 1908 proofs) for the issues of 1911.
    This is an exceptionally attractive matte proof and one that appears much finer than the stated grade. The finely granular surfaces show only the slightest evidence of contact with other coins. The rich orange-tan matte surface is accented with bright rose patina in the recesses of the design on each side--quite an unusual and interesting visual accent. (Registry values: N7079)

    Coin Index Numbers: (NGC ID# 28E5, PCGS# 8542)

    Weight: 8.36 grams

    Metal: 90% Gold, 10% Copper

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

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    April, 2008
    16th-18th Wednesday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 7
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 896

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