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    Description

    MS66+ 1912 Double Eagle, Ex: Jay Brahin
    The Single Finest Graded at PCGS

    1912 $20 MS66+ PCGS Secure. CAC. During the first five years of the Saint-Gaudens double eagle series from 1907-11 inclusive, three mints -- Philadelphia, Denver, and San Francisco -- had produced the denomination in an amount approaching 14 million pieces. Mintages of the smaller gold denominations were also on the large side. Thus it was that the year 1912 represented a radical departure from recent history, as only the Philadelphia Mint struck double eagles, in a modest quantity of 149,750 circulation strikes plus a smattering of the rare sandblast or matte proofs. Neither Denver nor San Francisco struck double eagles in 1912. One has to look as far back as 1886 to find no coinage of double eagles at the branch mints.
    The 1912 and later issues bear 48 stars due to the addition of the states of New Mexico and Arizona into the Union, the last such until Alaska and Hawaii would join in 1959. Two small stars were added below the date, near the oak leaves, with the remaining 46 stars left unmoved. The 1912 technically represents a first-year subtype.
    The current number of submissions to PCGS at the Gem level stands at 31, and only five have occurred at the MS66 level. The present piece, certified MS66+, stands alone as the single finest graded at PCGS (10/11). It also bears the CAC green label, which further distinguishes it from even its closest competitors. Thoroughgoing cartwheel luster on each side complements greenish-gold color intermingling with deep orange-gold. A small mark on Liberty's forehead and a few ticks on the left (facing) thigh and the nearby skirt lines are among few mentionable marks on the obverse. The reverse shows a tiny mark near the eagle's lower belly, along with a few other more minuscule signs of contact. A fully struck coin, with five toes and the heart-shaped ornament visible on Liberty's sandal and full panels and dome on the Capitol building. Note how the eagle's feathers are fully articulated, even at the rear feathers which are often weak. A die crack runs horizontally through the center of the sun.
    Dr. Duckor purchased this coin from his friend and fellow collector, Jay Brahin, although it was not part of Brahin's collection. We wrote in a preview to our FUN Platinum Night 2010:

    "Jay Brahin's name is well known to both the numismatic and investment communities. Although he can trace his first interest in rare coins back to the 1960s, he became a serious numismatist after the Millennium. His rise to the upper echelon of gold collectors was rapid, but it was based on three decades of investment acumen as a personal portfolio manager. He quickly developed personal relationships with the key players and dealers in American gold, and his list of friends is a Who's Who of American numismatics. The search for quality was the natural result of old business lessons and this new expert advice, and following old traditions. Mr. Brahin also gives back to the coin community, currently serving as President of the 20th Century Gold Club. He has also become a sought after resource for books and articles on twentieth century gold coins, and his opinions can be found in the Wall Street Journal as well as CoinLink."

    Ex: Jay Brahin.


    David Akers Comments:
    The discovery of a large, previously unknown hoard of a given date obviously changes our perception of the overall rarity of that issue. The 1912 is one of those issues and small hoards first appeared in Europe in the late 1960's and 1970's including a group of 40 choice examples purchased by Paramount from a source in Basel, Switzerland in 1973. Twenty or so years later, a much larger hoard of uncirculated 1912 double eagles was uncovered in Eastern Europe and so the 1912, formerly considered very scarce in choice mint state, is now regarded as rather common in MS63 and MS64 with hundreds known, certified and regularly available at moderate prices. The earlier hoards and the larger Eastern European one contained very few gem quality coins, however, and so the 1912 remains a rate date at that level. Above the MS65 grade level, the 1912 is extremely rare with only six to eight examples known. Of those, this Duckor specimen is the sole specimen receiving the (+) designation at PCGS and is unmatched by any other 1912 I have seen. I have used the term "underrated" rather liberally when commenting on the nine P-Mint issues from 1908 With Motto to 1915 and that term certainly applies to the 1912, because at the superb MS66 grade level it is every bit as rare, if not more so, than the famous and highly publicized 1931 and 1932.
    From The Dr. and Mrs. Steven L. Duckor Collection.
    Seller is donating a portion of their proceeds, and Heritage is donating the same portion of the Buyer's Premium, from the sale of this lot to the National Numismatic Collection at the Smithsonian Institution. See page 3 for details.(Registry values: N1)

    Coin Index Numbers: (NGC ID# 26FM, PCGS# 9160)

    Weight: 33.44 grams

    Metal: 90% Gold, 10% Copper


    Learn more at the Newman Numismatic Portal at Washington University in St. Louis.

    View all of [The Dr. and Mrs. Steven L. Duckor Collection ]

    View Certification Details from PCGS

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    January, 2012
    4th-8th Wednesday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 9
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 2,189

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

    Saint-Gaudens Double Eagles as Illustrated by the Phillip H. Morse and Steven Duckor Collections
    Revised Edition by Roger Burdette, and edited by James L. Halperin and Mark Van Winkle

    Saint-Gaudens Double Eagles is an issue-by-issue examination of this artistically inspired series of gold coins. Each date and mintmark is reviewed with up-to-date information, much of which has never been previously published. The book is based on two extraordinary collections: The Phillip H. Morse Collection and the Dr. and Mrs. Steven L. Duckor Collection.

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