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    1908 Motto Twenty Dollar, MS66+
    Extraordinary Preservation and Eye Appeal
    One Coin Graded Finer

    1908 $20 Motto MS66+ PCGS. Ex: Fox. David Akers was somewhat measured in his comments regarding the conditional rarity of this first-year Motto issue, writing: "There is no doubt that it is very rare in MS-64 or better condition but below that level, it is only scarce, certainly not rare. Even in gem condition, I do not find it to be as rare as the 1909, 1911 or 1914 although admittedly others' experience may differ from mine." He did maintain that examples are seldom available in Gem condition, which is true. In MS66, the population totals speak for themselves: 14 submissions at PCGS, this being one of two MS66+ examples, plus 10 additional Premium Gems at NGC, including three in MS66 . There is only one finer 1908 Motto twenty certified, housed in an MS67 PCGS holder (9/19).

    This outstanding Plus-graded offering is extraordinarily well-preserved, challenging that top-graded PCGS representative. Medium yellow-gold surfaces are finely textured and softly frosted with a few small coppery alloy spots. Close inspection reveals nothing more than a handful of microscopic, inconsequential flecks.

    David Akers (2012) Comments:
    The P-Mint issues from the 1908 With Motto to the 1915 have been a largely underappreciated subset of the Saint-Gaudens double eagle series for many years. Recently, collectors trying to put together truly exceptional sets of the series have discovered just how difficult all the members of this nine coin group really are to find in superb mint state (MS66 or better) condition. Of all the 54 issues in the Saint-Gaudens series, including all of the many famous rarities, only three have had none graded by PCGS in MS66 or finer condition and two of those are in this early P-Mint group, the 1913 and 1915. To put this fact in proper perspective, there are at least three superb specimens graded of every one of the famous late date issues from 1929-1932 and at least two of every one of the famous rarities of the 1920's. Of course at the Gem MS65 level and below, each of these nine issues is more common than the major rarities but for the perfectionist, finding a great example of any of these early P-Mint issues is a real challenge.

    Although for a long time the 1908 With Motto was considered one of the rarest of the group, it is now correctly seen to be the second most common in gem MS65 condition after the 1910 although it is not as rare as the 1910 in superb mint state. In fact, along with the 1911, the 1908 With Motto is the most available of the early P-Mint issues in MS66 or higher grade. Even so, only about 12-15 exist at that level.
    From The Rollo Fox Collection of $20 Saint-Gaudens Gold. (Registry values: N1)

    Coin Index Numbers: (NGC ID# 26F8, PCGS# 9147)

    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 Rollo Fox Collection of $20 Saint-Gaudens Gold ]

    View Certification Details from PCGS

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    January, 2020
    8th-12th Wednesday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 13
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 636

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    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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