Coins and Medals

16 Dec 2011, starting at 10:00 EST .

Auction information

This auction is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future auctions, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this auction, please contact customer services.

1860 Clark Gruber & Co. $10 MS61 PCGS
K-3, R.5. Lovely light green-golden toning shows over this superior quality, Mint State coin. Several minor contact marks are mentioned in the vulnerable fields on each side, however, these are entirely normal for the MS61 grade assessment by PCGS. A glistening example with a luxurious display of original luster remaining around and within the devices, and agreeable color on both sides. Wonderfully struck by the dies, as well, indeed fully so at the fanciful "Peak" first recorded by Zebulon Pike on his journey of discovery in 1806. Clark, Gruber and Company is the most famous Colorado private gold minter.

The Pike's Peak gold rush began in 1859 but word of the discovery began to spread East, West, South and North in the Fall of 1858. To further spark the public's interest, unbelievable fabrications began to appear in print, as though the mere reporting would establish the facts. On September 18, 1858, the Wyandotte Gazette published a "reliable" account concerning $10,000 in gold dust which had come in from Pike's Peak: "One man brought in $600.00 as the result of a few weeks work. A small boy had $1,000, which he says 'he dug down and found,' and the little fellow says 'he can get all he wants." This undocumented account was reprinted in the Missouri Democrat on September 24, and followed the next day by the report of a merchant from St. Joseph, who had come to St. Louis to buy a supply of bacon for the Pike's Peak trade. This and thousands of other newspaper accounts acted like a magnet to draw hopeful gold seekers to the region from which this $10 gold coin is an all-too-solid reminder of those half-forgotten days. (PCGS 10137)
Sold for US$ 43,290 inc. premium
MCMVII (1907) High Relief $20 Flat Rim MS64 PCGS
A fantastic example of one of the most beautiful coin designs in United States and World numismatics. Saint-Gaudens' stunning portrayal of Liberty is struck up in full, high relief on this lovely specimen. Liberty's dress detail is immaculate and her legs are missing any mentionable nicks. The luster is uninterrupted as it flows freely across the fields and across the devices. Magnification reveals interwoven circles of light die polish; these raised circular die lines are seen on only the finest examples with surface preservation of the highest degree.

This beautiful coin issue was the result of work by Augustus Saint-Gaudens at the request of President Theodore Roosevelt. Roosevelt felt strongly about bringing beauty back to America's coinage that he felt was boring and nowhere near the distinction of many Ancient Greek coin designs. Through all of the ensuing problems Saint-Gaudens and Roosevelt endured from the political sewing circle of the time, the project was successful and finally approximately 11,250 High Relief examples were produced in 1907. This quantity of High Relief examples was sufficient enough to satisfy Roosevelt but also enough to cause mint officials to complain about the negative effect of their difficult-to-produce design. Lower relief dies with Arabic numerals were subsequently produced and the mass production of "Saints," as we know them as today, began in full force. Out of the estimated mintage figure of 11,250 pieces, there are two varieties struck from the same dies, Flat Rim (Edge) and Wire Rim (Edge). The Flat Rim examples are substantially more scarce, probably on an order of 2-3x as the more common Wire Rim. (PCGS 9136)
Sold for US$ 35,100 inc. premium
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