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    Description

    1914 Half Eagle, PR66
    Second-Rarest Indian Proof
    Only Three Finer Coins at PCGS

    1914 $5 PR66 PCGS. CAC. The Philadelphia Mint adjusted the finish used on proof gold coins several times after 1907, because of collector dissatisfaction with the appearance of the coins. American collectors continued to prefer the brilliant finish used on proofs of earlier years to the dull matte,or sandblast finish used on the newer issues. This was a significant problem, because the new designs for U.S. gold coinage, with basined fields on the eagle and double eagle and sunken devices on the smaller denominations, were not suitable for polished surfaces. The Mint tried to adjust the finish one last time in 1914, using a sandblast finish with coarser surface granules than in 1912 and 1913. An optimistic mintage of 125 proofs was accomplished, but sales apparently fell far short of that total, and many of the coins were melted after the end of the year. Today, the 1914 proof Indian half eagle is the second rarest date of the series.

    The elusive nature of the 1914 proof was recognized at an early date, as B. Max Mehl called the issue "scarce" in his catalog of the Dr. G.F.E. Wilharm Collection in 1921, only seven years after the coins were issued. Mike Fuljenz estimates a surviving population of only about 30 coins in all grades today. PCGS and NGC have combined to certify a total of 57 examples, including an unknown number of resubmissions and crossovers (10/15). The record price realized at auction belongs to the PR68 NGC piece in the Tacasyl Collection (Bonhams, 9/2013), which brought $93,600.

    The present coin is a delightful Premium Gem, with razor-sharp definition on all design elements and impeccably preserved orange-gold surfaces. The distinctive matte luster is unbroken by "shiny" areas, or alloy spots, and eye appeal is extraordinary. Population: 4 in 66, 3 finer (10/15).
    From The Leon Hendrickson Collection.(Registry values: N7079) (NGC ID# 28E8, PCGS# 8545)

    Weight: 8.36 grams

    Metal: 90% Gold, 10% Copper


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

    View all of [The Leon Hendrickson Collection ]

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    December, 2015
    3rd-6th Thursday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 21
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,282

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