US Coins

Market Analysis: Just 1,000 1886 double eagles struck

Only 1,000 1886 Coronet gold $20 double eagles were struck for circulation, of which perhaps 60 survive today. Stack’s Bowers sold this one graded AU-55 for $132,000 on April 6.

All images courtesy of Stack’s Bowers Galleries.

The 1886 Coronet $20 double eagle has a legendary low mintage of just 1,000 circulation strikes, and of these, optimistic estimates suggest that 60 survive today, as few were saved by contemporary collectors.

The Fairmont Collection – Hendricks Set example, graded About Uncirculated 55 by PCGS, sold for $132,000 in Stack’s Bowers Galleries’s April 6 auction. Most of the production of the denomination in the 1880s was focused at the San Francisco Mint.

The offered double eagle is one of the finest survivors.

Stack’s Bowers praised its eye appeal, observing, “The surfaces are well composed and attractive with subtle orange-apricot highlights to dominant deep honey-gold color. Much of the mint finish remains, and the striking detail is impressively sharp throughout.”

Examples of the tough Philadelphia Mint double eagle arrive on the market infrequently, with Heritage Auctions selling another one, graded AU-55 by Numismatic Guaranty Co., at its January 2020 Florida United Numismatists auction for $96,000.

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