By CoinWeek ….
On Sunday, January 27, bidding ends on GreatCollections.com for a very exciting condition-rarity 1884 Indian Princess one dollar gold coin.
Out of a small mintage of 5,230 business strike 1884 gold dollars (which is surprisingly a middle-of-the-road striking for the Type 3, of which this coin is an example), this is the only specimen certified as MS-69 by either PCGS or NGC. Because of this, there are no auction records for the coin at this grade; the record price for an 1884 Indian Princess gold dollar is $25,850 USD for a piece graded MS-68+ by PCGS that sold at the Heritage Auctions ANA US Coins Signature Auction in August of 2015.
A more recent high-water mark occurred in October of 2017 when an MS-68 example went for $22,912.50 at Legend Rare Coin Auctions’ 23rd Regency sale.
As far as the MS-69 now on offer from GreatCollections goes, PCGS (which has encased the piece in a Gold Shield holder) gives the coin an estimated value of $75,000. Current bidding has the price up to $47,777.
Three Types of Gold Dollar
The smallest gold coin ever issued by the United States Mint, the one dollar gold coin (G$1) was struck for a period of 40 years starting in 1849 and ending in 1889. There are three obverse types, all designed by the fourth Chief Engraver of the Mint, James B. Longacre (served 1844-69):
Type 1 features Lady Liberty wearing a tiara and is referred to as the Liberty Head gold dollar. There are two reverse types associated with the Liberty Head dollar: Open Wreath and Closed Wreath. This type ran for about five years, from 1849 to 1854.
Type 2 gold dollar coins feature Lady Liberty in a pastiche “Native” headdress and are often called “Indian Princess” or “Princess Head” gold dollars. The holly wreath on the Type 1 reverse was changed to an “agricultural” wreath (cotton, wheat, etc.) with the introduction of the Indian Princess one dollar gold coin.
Production of the Indian Princess gold dollar coin proceeded for two years until the Mint decided to enlarge the effigy of Lady Liberty, at which point (1856) we get the Type 3 gold dollar, or Large Head Indian Princess (Type 2 becoming known as the Small Head). The Large Head type then ran until the end of the denomination in 1889.