US Coins

1899 Coronet half eagle at $125k: Market Analysis

A dramatic 1899 Coronet gold $5 half eagle graded Proof 68+ Deep Cameo was the top lot at Legend’s Dec. 17 auction in Las Vegas, selling for $125,000.

Original images courtesy of Legend Rare Coin Auctions

Legend Rare Coin Auctions sold $2,626,632.60 in rare coins at its Dec. 17, 2015, Regency Auction XV in Las Vegas, Nev., as part of the Professional Coin Grading Service Members Only show.

While a few of the expected top lots did not meet their reserves, dozens of top quality 19th century Proof coins, many with striking Deep Cameo contrast between the fields and devices, found new homes in the final major rare coin auction of 2015.

The Coin:
1899 Coronet gold $5 half eagle, Proof 68+ Deep Cameo

The Price: 

The Story:
The top lot in Legend’s Dec. 17 auction was this 1899 Coronet gold $5 half eagle graded Proof 68+ Deep Cameo by PCGS. It is the finest graded example of this date by PCGS, with a single Proof 69 Ultra Cameo coin graded by Numismatic Guaranty Corp. besting it.

The description observed, “Notice the fields when studying the surfaces, they ripple with the expected (but even stronger than usual) orange peel effect, where the glassy smooth surfaces appear to have fine subsurface texture.”

Legend noted that an NGC Proof 68 Ultra Cameo example sold for $136,125 at one of the August 2015 American Numismatic Association auctions, but ultimately the example offered in Las Vegas sold for a hammer price of $125,000, or $146,875 with the buyer's fee. 

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