MCMVII (1907) High Relief $20 Wire Rim
One of the dreams in a collector's life is to own a fresh, lustrous example of this celebrated coin. For this isn't just any coin, but a lustrous, sharply struck up example with exceptional eye-appeal and no problems on either side. The boldness is outstanding. Accomplishing a complete strike was highly damaging to the dies on the 1907 high reliefs, and many show minor die cracks or other types of coining strain.
Records show that the dies for these coins were made by Mint Engraver Charles E. Barber from Saint-Gaudens' plaster mold. Barber, who did not like anyone impinging on his mint privileges, did his utmost to sabotage production of the "High Relief." Eventually, Barber got his way and a greatly reduced relief design was employed in late 1907, just months after the original design was adopted, but not before slightly more than 11,000 of these marvelous High Relief twenties were coined. The wire rim is seen on most examples is caused by metal flowing up from the three piece edge collar and dies producing a thin raised "fin" around part of the obverse and reverse margin. Examination with a glass will note only a few stray tick marks, nothing important or distracting. The strike is, of course, sharp and essentially complete. Bright yellow-golden color overall. (PCGS 9135) Brilliant to Choice Uncirculated