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July 11, 2014


Click on Coin Image to enlarge

1793 Wreath Cent

1889 Gold Dollar $1 PCGS Proof 65 CAMEO CAC- $13,500.00

Here’s a scarce and incredible condition gem proof gold dollar that’s in a PCGS holder and also approved by CAC. In fact only 6 coins have been approved by CAC and NONE BETTER !

Please contact me by email or telephone 1-800-624-1870 to reserve this great coin.

1889 Gold $1 PCGS PR65 CAM CAC. Truly excellent proof gold dollar with cam on the holder but deep cam in my eyes. One of only 6 coins to have been Cac’d in Proof 65 Cam and none better.

In its population report, PCGS shows 6 1889 gold dollars certified at the PR65 CAM grade level. At CAC, as of November 2013, the present coin is tied with 5 others in PR65 CAM with none finer.

This 1889, last-year-of-type Gem Cameo proof gold dollar is tied for the second finest known at PCGS and the finest known at CAC. Unlike many of this date that, according to Garrett and Guth in their Encyclopedia, are often seen with polished-out feathers on the headdress of the obverse side, this specimen shows full details on the devices of both sides, which are frosted and float on deep mirrored fields. Certainly this piece could have been designated Deep Cameo without doing harm to the grading service’s reputation. The coin is, of course, original and clean for the grade with no distracting hairlines or other problems. The CAC sticker indicates that the coin is a premium quality piece that fully merits the assigned grade.

Designed by James B. Longacre, the Indian Princess gold dollar showed a head of Liberty facing left wearing a stylized feathered headdress. It is inscribed LIBERTY on the headband. She is surrounded by the legend UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. The reverse shows an open wreath of corn, cotton, maple, and tobacco tied below with a bow. The wreath encircles the denomination, 1 DOLLAR, and the date. The problem with the coin was that it did not strike up well. In fact mint state examples looked worn and, in some cases, so circulated that the date could not be read on the coin. This problem most affected the branch mint issues, which Longacre did not get to see until afterwards. The proofs that he saw did not have this as a problem. To remedy this situation, Longacre designed the Type 3 gold dollar. While the design was similar to the previous issue, Longacre lowered the relief and moved the obverse head so as not to be opposite a reverse relief area. This coin is called the Large Size or Large Head.

The dollar coin was part of Alexander Hamilton’s original plan for the nation’s coinage; however, there was none until 1830’s, when Christopher Bechtler, a private minter, began to coin dollar and other denomination in gold. However, the coins were variable in fineness and frequently counterfeited. In 1844 a bill was introduced in congress to make gold dollars. Mint Director Robert Patterson was opposed. He falsely claimed that there was no public demand for these coins. He did not want Longacre, the Mint Engraver, making new dies because that would interfere with Franklin Peale’s medal-making business. He thought that Longacre’s job might be abolished if new coinage was not needed. However, five years later Congress recognized the need to coin the new California gold that was coming into the Mint.

The public need a replacement for the paper currency that was frequently only acceptable at a discount and for the silver that had vanished during the “Hard Times” of 1837 to 1844. Notwithstanding Patterson’s objection, Longacre made the dies for the gold dollar and production began on May 8th of both business strikes and proofs. Longacre was born in Pennsylvania in 1794. When he finished his apprenticeship in Philadelphia as a bookseller and a banknote engraver, he worked on his own as an engraver of book illustrations and bank notes. His works included one on the signers of the Declaration of Independence and another on stage personalities. In 1830, Longacre began a series of biographies of famous men in the military and the political arena.

In 1834 the result of this series became the National Portrait Gallery of Distinguished Americans that was published in four volumes. Longacre and those who worked with him became famous because of this work. In 1844 Longacre came to work at the Mint. He was opposed by Franklin Peale, the Chief Coiner. Ten years later, Peale was fired by President Franklin Pearce. Longacre flourished in his position and was responsible for creating many new designs including the Indian Head cent, the two-cent piece, the Shield nickel, the Liberty Head gold dollar, the Indian Princess gold dollar, the three-dollar gold piece, and the Liberty Head double eagle.

According to Garrett and Guth, many proofs of 1889 entered circulation or were melted because hoarding gold dollars had peaked by this time.

Very Truly Yours,

Tom Pilitowski
Toll Free:
Email: TomPilitowski@yahoo.com

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