By James McCartney, Numismatist & Cataloger – Stack’s Bowers …..
To be presented in lot 2149 of Rarities Night in our November 2016 Baltimore auction is a glorious 1916-S Indian half eagle certified MS-66 by PCGS and one of the finest survivors of the issue.
The San Francisco Mint was the only mint to strike half eagles in 1916, putting very strong collector demand on this low-mintage issue. While the 240,000 examples struck reflected an increase from the previous year’s production of 164,000 coins, no half eagles were produced after 1916 until the final issue in 1929. Few coins escaped circulation. A hoard of approximately 200 Mint State coins surfaced prior to 1988, though none were better than Choice. In true Gem, the 1916-S Indian $5 is a great rarity, with PCGS displaying 17 grading events at MS-65 and above (a number undoubtedly inflated by resubmission). The offered example is tied with just one other piece at the MS-66 level, and only two pieces have been graded finer, both of which were awarded a “+”.
This truly stunning specimen displays ivory, wheat and tangerine tones across both sides. The luster is soft and appealing, with areas of matte-like texture visible under a glass. This beautiful piece is sure to inspire intense bidding activity!
This lovely treasure will be offered with numerous world-class rarities in our November 2016 Official Auction of the Whitman Coin & Collectibles Expo. To obtain your copy of the catalog or to consign your rarities to a future showcase event, please contact our offices today at 1-800-458-4646 to speak with a Consignment Director and see what Stack’s Bowers Galleries can do for you.