1914 $5 PR68 NGC. JD-1, Low R.5. The Philadelphia ...Click the image to load the highest resolution version.
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1914 Indian Half Eagle, PR68
1914 $5 PR68 NGC. JD-1, Low R.5. The Philadelphia Mint
struck a modest total of 125 proof Indian half eagles in 1914, with
the coins delivered in two batches on September 28 (50 examples)
and December 11 (75 pieces). A single pair of dies was used to
strike all the coins. The mint experimented with the unpopular
sandblast finish of the coins for the final time in 1914. The basic
sandblast format was followed, but the size of the granules of sand
used was increased marginally, resulting in slightly coarser and
darker surfaces on the coins. Unfortunately, contemporary
collectors remained unimpressed and it is likely that some coins
went unsold and were either melted after the end of the year or
simply released into circulation. John Dannreuther estimates the
surviving population at 65-75 examples in all grades, making the
proof 1915 Indian half eagle the second rarest issue of the
Second-Rarest Proof Indian Five
High Condition Census Example
Prominent Fort Worth coin dealer B. Max Mehl recognized the elusive nature of the 1914 proof Indian half eagle at an early date, calling the issue "scarce" in his catalog of the Dr. G.F.E. Wilharm Collection in 1921, only seven years after the coins were issued. Currently, PCGS has certified a total of 27 examples, with grades ranging from PR63 to PR68, while NGC has graded 31 specimen, also with the grades ranging from PR63 through PR68 (4/20). Even these small totals probably contain some duplication, due to resubmissions and crossovers. A PR68 PCGS example sold for $246,750 in 2017.
The 1914 proof Indian half eagle is seldom encountered in any grade and few survivors can match the quality and eye appeal of this magnificent PR68 example. The design elements are sharply detailed throughout and the impeccably preserved khaki-gold surfaces show the medallic, coarse-grained matte texture of the best 1914 proofs. Overall eye appeal is terrific. NGC has graded four coins in PR68, one of them in 68+, with none finer, while PCGS has certified only one example in PR68, also with none finer (4/20). This coin will be a welcome addition to the finest collection or Registry Set.
Coin Index Numbers: (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.
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