1903 Liberty Head Five, PR67 Cameo
    Tied for Numeric Finest at PCGS
    Seldom Seen With Cameo Devices

    1903 $5 PR67 Cameo PCGS. CAC. This Liberty Head five dollar proof was struck in the year after the Mint revised its method of proof coin production, changing from an ideal coinage showing deeply mirrored fields and thickly frosted, contrasting devices to a format with little to no contrast, one that Walter Breen memorably calls "semi-brilliant." The change involved basically polishing the (lowered) devices in the dies used to strike proof coinage, as well as the fields of the dies. In this way, any mint frost remaining on the devices was the result of happenstance rather than planning, likely occurring before any subsequent die repolishings might remove any trace of frostiness.
    The 1903 proof half eagle was struck in the amount of 154 pieces, only about four dozen fewer than the 1903 quarter eagle, yet it is seen far less often. The certified populations are rife with duplications -- likely to obtain Cameo designations as well as to attempt a finer numeric grade. This piece, certified PR67 Cameo by PCGS, is tied with one other submission at PCGS, and if they are duplicates it is the numerically finest known at that service, as there are no PR67s in either non-Cameo or Deep Cameo (unsurprisingly).
    As much as collectors treasure (today) the matte proofs of the Saint-Gaudens and Pratt designs, many proof gold aficionados show affinity for the old Liberty Head format -- and far more so when they can obtain a nice high-grade Cameo example such as the present piece. This golden-yellow example boasts an impeccable strike on both sides, and the field-device contrast is more obvious on the reverse than on the obverse. This piece might bear serious consideration among proof gold specialists and type collectors alike.(Registry values: P1) (NGC ID# 28D9, PCGS# 88498)

    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
    September, 2012
    6th-9th Thursday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 5
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