Finest Certified 1894 Five Dollar
    PR67 ★ Ultra Cameo

    1894 $5 PR67 ★ Ultra Cameo NGC. The mintages for circulation strike fives from the 1890s are generally high, and most dates are available with little difficulty in mint condition. Proofs, on the other hand, are rare in all years. Mintages for proofs range from a low of 53 for the 1892 to a high of 103 for the 1896. The 1894 falls in the middle, with 75 pieces struck. However, the 1894 has long been recognized as a rarer date in proof format than its mintage suggests. Akers (1980) merely stated: "Proofs are rare." Breen (1988) said: "rarer than the mintage suggests." Those brief comments were enhanced by Garrett and Guth (2006), who stated: "The Proof half eagles of 1894 are very rare, with only 20 to 30 coins known in all grades." If that is an accurate estimate of the number of survivors, it is lower than most proof gold from this time period.
    Most likely because of the low mintage, most of the proofs that do survive of the 1894 five show cameo contrast. The frosted finish from the new dies did not have a chance to wear off with a production run of only 75 pieces. To underscore this, of the 24 proof 1894 fives that NGC has certified, only one is not Cameo or Ultra Cameo. This is the finest proof 1894 certified by both of the major services. It is also the finest certified at NGC by two points, with second finest being a pair of PR65 coins. Clearly, attrition took a heavy toll on this issue.
    Breen (1988) published the diagnostics for proofs of this date: "Proofs have date high to l., slanting up to r., 4 close to truncation (ill. Akers <1979>)." This piece, of course, shows those characteristics. The coin itself has starkly contrasted fields and devices. The fields go "black" and also show the usual orange-peel effect. The devices, on the other hand, are heavily frosted. The combination yields a dramatic two-toned effect. Virtually perfect surfaces.
    From The Ultra Collection.(Registry values: P3) (NGC ID# 28CY, PCGS# 98489)

    Weight: 8.36 grams

    Metal: 90% Gold, 10% Copper

    View all of [The Ultra Collection ]

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    ‡ The owner placed a late bid on this unreserved lot and repurchased it, subject to applicable commission.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    March, 2008
    6th-7th Thursday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 5
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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