Goldberg Coins and Collectibles

Sale 70

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Lot 2051

1868. PCGS graded MS-64. Only 4,850 minted of which merely 1,250 examples are estimated to have survived. Lovely golden toning and fully prooflike. A brilliant, lustrous specimen with, as stated, a generous amount of Prooflike surface on both sides immediately draws attention. The strike is above average, but with some lightness on the high parts of the wreath bow. The reverse is quite sharp otherwise, not perfect, but close.

As a Mint State coin the present 1868 is a significant rarity per the accompanying census figures. Clearly, the word opportunity applies here. Pop 14; 7 finer, 5 in 65, 2 in 66 (PCGS # 7989) .

Historical Account: Among later Philadelphia Mint coins, mintages were very low, save for 41,800 struck in 1874 and 82,304 in 1878. Regarding these two higher-mintage dates, it is likely that thoughts of the resumption of payments of gold coins at par, which had not been done since December 28, 1861, would create a demand for $3 pieces. However, the experts at the Treasury Department were wrong, and no widespread interest ever developed.

Coinage reached an especially low point in 1873, when only a few hundred pieces seem to have been struck. Mint records are silent on circulating coinage of this year, and the best we can do is guess. A few years later, even fewer coins were made, with just 20 being struck in 1875 and only 45 in 1876, these being Proofs for collectors.

Beginning in 1879 and continuing to the end of the series in 1889, there was a modest investment and speculative interest by the public in $3 gold coins, and more Mint State pieces were saved than would have been the case otherwise. However, none are really common, as the low mintages indicate.
Estimated Value $11,000 - 12,000.
The Dandelion Collection.

Realized $10,638

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