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September 12, 2014


1865-S $20 Brother Jonathan PCGS MS63
Click on Coin Image to enlarge

1865 $20 Brother Jonathan PCGS MS63

1865-S $20 Brother Jonathan, PCGS MS63 - $19,800.00

Ex-SS Brother Jonathan #696. This fully lustrous, Western branch mint, Choice Mint State 1865-S Double Eagle comes with the provenance of the shipwrecked SS Brother Jonathan. The coin is a mixture of light and dark yellow and rose gold.

The surfaces are extremely clean for the grade with no notable abrasion marks. The strike is above average with full details on the centers of most of the obverse stars, Liberty’s hair, and the design details of the reverse, especially the eagle. The coin is eye-appealing and has the look of a higher grade piece.

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

The double eagle was designed by James B. Longacre. It shows a Liberty head facing left, wearing coronet inscribed LIBERTY. Her hair is tightly tied in the back with two loose curls hanging down her neck to the end of the truncation. She is surrounded by thirteen six-pointed stars with the date below. Dentils are near the edge on both sides of the coin. The reverse shows a heraldic eagle with elaborate ribbons on both sides of the shield extending from the top corner down to the eagle’s tail feathers. The ribbons are inscribed, on the left E PLURIBUS and UNUM on the right. The ribbons were added to the design to symbolize the denomination since this was the first twenty dollar coin. There is an oval of thirteen stars above the eagle’s head and an arc of rays from wing tip to wing tip behind the upper half of the oval. UNITED STATES OF AMERICA is in an arc above the eagle, and the denomination TWENTY D. is below. The mintmark is between the tail feathers and the N of TWENTY.

In 1865, the SS Brother Jonathan was headed from San Francisco to Portland. It carried about 150 passengers, a crew of 60 and a large cargo that included an unknown quantity of gold coins. The ship ran into heavy winds and put in to port at Crescent City. In the morning the voyage was resumed, but the seas were still rough. The captain ordered it returned to port, but it struck a submerged rock that was hidden just below the surface of the water. The ship sank along with most of the passengers, crew, and captain.

In the 1990’s a group of investors formed Deep Sea Research, Inc. and found the ship and recovered its treasure. The 1865-S double eagles that were recovered are, according to Garrett and Guth in their Encyclopedia, “…tangible links to these fascinating treasures and an important time in American history.”




Very Truly Yours,

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

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