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    Unique Branch Mint Proof 1907-D Double Eagle, Ex: Farouk

    1907-D $20 PR62 NGC. Ex: Farouk. Only one branch mint proof double eagle is known to have been produced of the 1907-D, and that was on September 30, 1907. Undoubtedly, these coins were struck to commemorate the end of the long-running Coronet design which was first struck for regular coinage in 1850.
    For a mint that had only been in operation for two years, this coin shows that the Denver facility was able to produce a remarkably high quality proof. It is, in fact, consistent in quality to proofs struck in the Philadelphia Mint in the early years of the 20th century. There is no contrast evident on either side, but many Philadelphia proofs did not show contrast either during this period and none did during 1901 and 1902. Die polish is complete and covers all areas of the fields right up to the rims and all the devices, something that is not seen on all branch mint proof dollars from the New Orleans or Carson City mints. Close examination with a magnifier shows tiny lint marks that were struck into the coin, evidence that the dies were wiped with a cloth and because of static electricity, some of the lint from the cloth adhered to the dies, thus being transferred onto the coin. As one would expect from a multiply struck proof, the design elements are completely struck up in all areas.
    This piece was once a part of the king of Egypt's collection of coins. According to John Pittman, King Farouk had a conservator who cleaned his coins. Not all of Farouk's coins were cleaned, though, and we are not sure what criteria the "conservator" used to select the coins to be cleaned, but this piece was one of them. The surfaces are noticeably hairlined on each side. That being said, however, the hairlining is just about the only detracting technical element that keeps this coin from a higher grade. The only surface flaws that merit mentioning are a vertical milling mark on Liberty's neck and a short planchet flaw in the field by star 12.
    Branch mint proofs are among the rarest of the rare in U.S. numismatics. They are incompletely understood even by experts as so few pieces are known, and some grading services shy away from encapsulating certain issues. However, the coins speak for themselves and it is apparent they were specially prepared and an attempt was made to produce a proof product that would be comparable to that struck in the Philadelphia Mint. This is a unique offering from the Denver mint, and it may be many years before this proof 1907-D is available again in public auction.
    Ex: Palace Collection / Farouk (Sotheby's, 2-3/54), lot 184, part of a 34-coin lot; Kreisberg-Schulman (10/2/59), lot 1844; Kreisberg-Schulman (2/60), lot 2931; Ronnie Carr.(#9123) (Registry values: P1) (NGC ID# 26EV, PCGS# 9123)

    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, 2004
    7th-10th Wednesday-Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 17
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 2,248

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