1907 High Relief - 1907 High Relief $20 Flat Edge, PCGS MS64 CAC. Presenting an absolutely GORGEOUS specimen of the worlds most popular double eagle, the classic 1907 High Relief, NGC MS-64 CAC! This is one of only 49 specimens to attain the elusive CAC sticker. Vastly more scarce then the Wire Edge High Relief, this Flat Edge High Relief is just out of this worls beautiful and rare!
Two varieties of the 1907 High Relief Saint-Gaudens double eagle were produced: the Wire Rim and the Flat Rim. A total of 11,250 pieces were minted of both varieties combined, with the Flat Rim coins being at least four to five times scarcer than their Wire Rim counterparts This lovely coin is an even yellow-gold color on both the obverse and reverse. The coin is lustrous, especially on Liberty’s outstretched leg and drapery and on the rays of the sun. On the reverse, we see luster on some of the feathers and between the sun’s rays behind the eagle’s beak. The coin is free of contact marks usually associated with the grade. In fact while grading MS64 and confirmed by CAC, this coin could easily reside in a holder a point or two higher. The strike is full in that we see every detail on the obverse, including the drapery lines on Liberty’s knee. On the reverse, we see every line in every feather of the eagle. A full strike is unusual for this issue, which is most often seen with weakness on some details of the hair, drapery, face, oak leaves, sunburst, or tail feathers.
At the turn of the 20th century, President Theodore Roosevelt decided to start an effort to beautify American coinage. He induced Augustus Saint-Gaudens, his personal friend for years, to overhaul American designs. Saint-Gaudens only lived to finish the double eagle and the eagle. These two designs are considered by some to be the best designs of their denominations and some of the best of any American coin ever. The double eagle design is considered by many to be the most beautiful American gold coin design. It is currently in use, with minor modifications, on American gold bullion coinage.
The original coinage of 1907 had an ultra high relief as the artist intended. However, when the Mint struck some coins, they required repeated striking by the presses, and had more the appearance of medals than coins. There are two varieties the “flat rim” and “knife rim.” Many estimates agree that the approximately 3,000 of November 1907 had flat rims, and the 8,250 of December showed knife rims. The wire or knife rim is a raised flange around half or more of the coin on either or both sides, caused by metal being squeezed between the collar and die on successive blows during striking. The present coin is the flat rim type with thirteen rays on the sunburst.
When it was found that the high relief coins would not stack, the coin was redesigned by Mint Engraver Charles Barber to a lower relief, more practical design. However, some of the high relief coins found their way into circulation. The coins were minted continuously until 1933, except for 1917-19, when no coins were struck.
In 1907 and 1908, a number of eagle and double eagle coins were minted without the motto of IN GOD WE TRUST. At that time, the coinage laws did not require the motto, and so Saint-Gaudens had not been asked to include it. President Roosevelt defended the omission as a prevention of a profane use of God's name, but in 1908, Congress passed an act requiring the use of the motto on all denominations of coins on which the motto had previously appeared--including the eagle and double eagle. The reverse of the coin was redesigned to include the motto.
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