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HomeProbable Finest Known 1873-S US Gold Eagle Recently Discovered in Europe

Probable Finest Known 1873-S US Gold Eagle Recently Discovered in Europe


By Greg Cohen – Consignment Director, U.S. & World Coins at Stack’s Bowers….
Every once in a while, a previously unknown cache of coins that yields a new discovery surprises the numismatic market. Sometimes a new variety or date in a series is uncovered or the census of known examples and their grades is revised. The latter is the case for this 1873-S eagle, found in Europe in March, and now the finest certified example and quite possibly is the finest known.

The 1873-S $10 gold piece is scarce with only 12,000 examples struck for circulation, as the coiner’s attention was focused on striking double eagles. Like most gold coins struck in the western branch mints, most of these slipped into commerce and became worn. This is an ultimate condition rarity, with the Uncirculated population consisting of only this newly discovered example at the MS-62 level, and a single example graded MS-61. That MS-61 has an extensive pedigree going back to our 1986 sale of the Carter Collection, eventually finding its way to the Harry W. Bass Collection, and last sold publicly in 2000.

Dave Akers in his reference on U.S. gold coins called this date rare in any grade, and unknown in Uncirculated. Since its publication, these two pieces have appeared on the market. For over 15 years, the MS-61 Bass coin has stood as the sole Mint State coin. In March 2015, when the currently offered example was submitted to PCGS in Paris, it received the MS-62 grade qualifying it as the finest graded and likely the finest known.

This exciting new discovery will be offered as lot 70 in our special New York Rarities Sale, being held in conjunction with Sotheby’s on May 20. If rare gold coins are your area of specialty, be sure to view this important coin during our lot viewing in New York, both at Stack’s Bowers Auction Gallery and at the Sotheby’s Gallery. Or visit StacksBowers.com to view this coin and the entire Rarities Sale online.

Stack's Bowers
Stack's Bowershttps://stacksbowers.com/
Stack's Bowers Galleries conducts live, internet, and specialized auctions of rare U.S. and world coins and currency and ancient coins, as well as direct sales through retail and wholesale channels. The company's 90-year legacy includes the cataloging and sale of many of the most valuable United States coin and currency collections to ever cross an auction block — The D. Brent Pogue Collection, The John J. Ford, Jr. Collection, The Louis E. Eliasberg, Sr. Collection, The Harry W. Bass, Jr. Collection, The Joel R. Anderson Collection, The Norweb Collection, The Cardinal Collection, The Sydney F. Martin Collection, and The Battle Born Collection — to name just a few. World coin and currency collections include The Pinnacle Collection, The Louis E. Eliasberg, Sr. Collection of World Gold Coins, The Kroisos Collection, The Alicia and Sidney Belzberg Collection, The Salton Collection, The Wa She Wong Collection, and The Thos. H. Law Collection. The company is headquartered in Costa Mesa, California with galleries in New York, Boston, and Philadelphia. Offices are also located in New Hampshire, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Virginia, Hong Kong, Paris, and Vancouver.

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