Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice

    Description

    Gem Cameo Proof 1897 Double Eagle
    From the 'Sweet Spot' of 19th Century Proof Coinage

    1897 $20 PR65 Cameo NGC. CAC. The years 1896 through 1898 are known as the "sweet spot" for gorgeous Cameo and Deep/Ultra Cameo Morgan silver dollars: Some of the most intensely contrasted specimens of the type come from those years. To a lesser extent, the same is true of proof Liberty Head double eagles, although with the larger denomination the challenge was not contrast so much as simple survival: From the original mintage -- given as 76 pieces in the Breen Proof Encyclopedia, 69 coins in the Guide Book -- perhaps 35 to 40 pieces survive today. NGC and PCGS combined can account for 44 certification events, with 13 non-Cameo coins, 19 Cameo, and 13 Deep/Ultra Cameos. At NGC, this Gem Cameo is the sole one so certified, with two Cameos finer (most of the Cameo coins cluster at the PR64 level). Even if the original mintage was all sold and none melted at year-end, the gold double eagle proofs represented a considerable sum of money in the late 19th/early 20th centuries, and as such they were the first coins likely to be spent from a proof set when hard times came a-knockin'.
    It is those same attributes -- low mintages and high attrition rates, combined with the venerable Liberty Head design and the popular proof gold format -- that make these coins the object of such numismatic desire today. The present Gem Cameo example shows considerable field-device contrast, even if not as profound as seen on some silver proofs of the year. The fields are more deeply mirrored than the devices are frosted, leading to the Cameo designation. Light, wispy, almost undetectable hairlining accounts for the numeric grade level. The surfaces display even orange-gold color with a slight orange-peel texture in the fields. Census: 1 in 65 Cameo, 2 finer (6/11).(Registry values: P2) (NGC ID# 26EJ, PCGS# 89113)

    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
    August, 2011
    11th-14th Thursday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 14
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,375

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    15% of the successful bid (minimum $14) per lot.

    Sold for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    VIEW BENEFITS
    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
      winnings 
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Only 4 days left to consign to the 2020 January 8 - 13 FUN US Coins Signature Auction - Orlando !

    Learn about consigning with us

    We will be using HA in the future for some of our numismatic sales, thanks for all the help and guidance!
    Marshall T. ,
    Los Angeles, CA
    View More Testimonials

    HA.com receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source: Similarweb.com)

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search

    Recent auctions

    2019 October 17-24 US Coins Signature Auction - Dallas
    2019 October 17-24 US Coins Signature Auction - Dallas
    REALIZED $7,412,570
    2019 September 5 - 9 Long Beach Expo World & Ancient Coins Signature Auction - Long Beach
    2019 September 5 - 9 Long Beach Expo World & Ancient Coins Signature Auction - Long Beach
    REALIZED $5,898,481
    2019 September 5 - 9 Long Beach Expo World Paper Money Signature Auction - Long Beach
    2019 September 5 - 9 Long Beach Expo World Paper Money Signature Auction - Long Beach
    REALIZED $1,866,390