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1853-O Double Eagle

1853-O Double Eagle

1853-O Double Eagle or $20 Gold

PCGS No: 8910
Circulation strikes Mintage: 71,000
Proofs: Unknown
Designer: James Barton Longacre
Diameter: ±34 millimeters
Metal content: Gold - 90%
Other - 10%
Weight: ±516 grains (±33.4 grams)
Edge: Reeded
Mintmark: "O" (for New Orleans, LA) below the eagle's tail on the reverse.


As can been seen from the much lower mintage, the 1853-O double eagle is considerably rarer than the preceding double eagles from the New Orleans Mint. While scarce, collectors willing to settle for a Very Fine or Extremely Fine coin will have little trouble locating an example. Most of the coins seen are softly struck in the central portions, and high-grade examples are usually prooflike. A very small number was found on the wrecks of the S.S. Central America and S.S. Republic. There are fewer than 10 examples known in Mint State. An MS-62 example was sold privately in 2003 for more than $65,000.
Key to Collecting: The 1853-O is the gatekeeper to what becomes a series of hard-to-find New Orleans double eagles.
Aspects of Striking: Usually with areas of light striking at the center of the obverse and reverse. Always with prooflike surface, this visible on higher grade pieces, this from the usual die polishing at the New Orleans Mint.
Die Data: Standard four-digit logotype punch for this year. 6 obverse dies were sent to New Orleans, with no record of additional reverses indicating that some must have been left over from earlier times. Date and mint-mark positional variations exist.

Doubling on Stars:
One has doubling on the obverse stars (Breen-7164).

Number of Appearances: 108 (24%)
High Grade Condition Points: 25
Average Grade: VF-33

Auction Records:
(6) Unc: Auction'81; ANA 1976; New England 11/75; PineTree6/7S; MC 1948; WGC 1946

(13) AU: Auction 79; AAA 11/74; Stack's 12/73; Scanlon 10/73; 9/72; Kreisberg/ Cohen 9/71; ANA 1971; Stack's6/70; Merkin 10/69; Miles 1968; Stack's5/68; ANA 1963; Holmes 1960

(39) EF: Stack's 12/81,9/81, 3, 81; Auction '80(2); New England 1/80; Ivy 12/79; ANA 1979; Stack's 6/79. 2/79; New England 1 1/78; Pine Tree 1/78; Ivy 1/78; New England 11/77; Ivy 10/77; Stack's4; 77; New England 3'76; GENA 1975; Pine Tree 6 75; Paramount 5/75; Stack's 4/30/75; ANA 1974; Pine Tree 3/74; Gilhousen 1973; Stack's 4/71; Paramount 2/71; Merkin 6/70; ANA 1969; Paramount 10/68; Stack's 12 67; Paramount 11/67, 10/66; Kosoff 10/65; Ward 1964; Bell 1963; Wolfson 1962; Baldenhofer 1955; Bell 1944; Ten Eyck 1922

(45) VF: New England 6/81; Stack's 3/81; New England 4/80; Superior 10/79; New England 7/77; Paramount 4/77, 1/77,5/76; Peters 4/76; New England 11/75; AAA 9/75; Superior 10/74; Paramount 2/74, 5/73, 11/72; Superior 3/71; Paramount 11/70,5/70; Stack's 1/70; Paramount 11/69; Stack's 3/69; ANA 1968; Shuford 1968; Stack's 5/68; Paramount 10/67; Stack's 6/67, 4/67; Paramount 4/67, 2/67, 11/66; Stack's 10/66; Paramount 5/66; Bolt 1966; Paramount 3/66; Stack's 2/65; Paramount 2/65; Walton 1963; ANA 1956(2); Melish 1956; Baldenhofer 1955; Farouk 1954; Lee 1947; Atwater 1946; Roach 1944

(5) Fine: ANA 1975; Kreisberg/Cohen 11/70; Paramount 11/67;Golden I962;Menjou 1950

This issue is very scarce in all grades and is extremely rare in full mint state. Overall, among O-Mint issues, it ranks as the fourth most common after the I851-O, I852-O, and 1850-O, although it is more likely to be available in high grade than the 1850-O. The vast majority of known specimens grade in the VF to EF range and strictly graded AU-50 or better pieces are seldom seen. Personally, 1 have seen only one true unc but from the auction records it is certainly likely that another one or two may exist. In terms of rarity according to average grade, the 1853-O ranks in the top 20 coins (tied for 17th) in the entire series. All specimens that I have seen were either semi-prooflike or prooflike.

See Double Eagle Gold Coins for sale. Click here!

Courtesy Akers: United States Gold Coins - An Analysis of Auction Records
Courtesy Bowers: A Guide Book of Double Eagle Gold Coins


1853-O Double Eagle - Double Eagle Gold Coins

US Rare Coin Investments 2003 - 2015 U.S. Rare Coin Investments

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