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    Description

    Gem Proof 1845 Half Eagle, NGC PR66 Ultra Cameo

    1845 $5 PR66 Ultra Cameo NGC. The history of this half eagle is nearly identical to that of the similarly dated quarter eagle in this auction. While there are four 1845 proof eagles known to exist, there are only three documented quarter eagles and three half eagles. This led David Akers, in his catalog of the Pittman collection, to comment: "Since there are four known proof eagles of this date, it is almost a certainty that at least four examples of both the quarter eagle and half eagle were also struck since the gold coins would have been minted only as complete sets. However, at the present time, only three each of the quarter eagle and half eagle are known." Like the quarter eagle, Walter Breen recorded four different examples in his Complete Encyclopedia, not being aware that the "Memorable Sale" coin and the Pittman coin were and are the same. Although it is increasingly difficult to establish pedigree changes for these proof gold coins with accuracy, Breen identified the Memorable Sale coin with an earlier pedigree including Lorin Parmelee, William Woodin, Waldo Newcomer, Col. Green, Burdette Johnson, and "Bell," this being a pseudonym for Jacob Shapiro.
    President James Knox Polk entered office the year these coins were struck. He was known by his colleagues as "Young Hickory" for his staunch support of Andrew Jackson. Although born near Charlotte, N.C., and educated at the University of North Carolina, Polk spent most of his life as a resident of Tennessee, serving that state as governor beginning in 1839. This was a period of great expansion, including the addition of Texas as the 28th state. Despite the ever-growing size and population of the nation, coinage production remained modest, not increasing dramatically until after the Western gold and silver discoveries, beginning in 1848.
    Coin collecting was also in its infancy during this period, with few collectors. In American Numismatics Before the Civil War, Dave Bowers commented: (Registry values: P2) (NGC ID# 56ES, PCGS# 98435)

    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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    Auction Dates
    April, 2006
    6th-7th Thursday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 20
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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