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Learning More About The Double Eagle Coin

January 06, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 195

The Double Eagle coin is a gold bullion coin that was minted by the United States Mint; the first of these gold coins was minted in 1849, producing two proofs at the time. Production kicked into gear in 1850 and continued until 1933.

The Coin Itself

This visually stunning coin has often been described as one of the most beautiful coins that the United States has ever minted. It has a face-value of $20 which is what earned it the moniker Double Eagle. At the time of early production, the highest denomination of coin in the United States was the Eagle - valued at $10.

The Double Eagle was produced using an alloy containing 90% gold and 10% copper. Like all gold coins its worth was determined by the cost of gold. However, the historical value of these alone combined with the year that they were minted can dramatically alter the true market value.

The gold Double Eagle went through several design changes, as well as a change in designer, that evolved from the head of Lady Liberty on the observe side to the much more widely recognized image of Lady Liberty striding forward boldly.

Augustus Saint-Gaudens can be credited for many of the designs seen on US collectible coins; his rendition of the Double Eagle much more closely resembles the design of the coin that was released in 2009 as a testimony to his vision and to the ability of the US Mint.

The obverse side of the coin depicts Lady Liberty with a flowing robe; in her left hand she holds an olive branch and a flaming torch in her right hand. The reverse side of the coin depicts a young Eagle, the symbol of American freedom, flying at sunrise The edge holds the motto familiar to most of us: "E Pluribus Unum"

The 1933 Gold Double Eagle Scandal

Holding the distinction of being the coin that received the highest price at auction, the 1933 Gold Double Eagle reached over $7.5Million. The 1933 Double Eagle was never actually issued into circulation, or even to collectors. Production was halted and the almost half a million coins that had already been minted were scheduled to be melted down into bullion bars.

A few of these were able to escape the fate of being melted down; two of the coins were donated to the Smithsonian. However, even though they were never released to the public, the Secret Service found themselves on a mad hunt to retrieve at least eight more that had been stolen. To this day no one is really sure how the coins left the US Mint and no one is entirely sure how many coins still exist in private collections.

While you may not have the budget to afford one of the 1933 Gold Double Eagles, should one ever surface on the market, you can certainly acquire some of the other Double Eagles if you work with the right coin trader.

These stunning coins are a great addition to any collection.

If you are interested in US coins for sale Old Coins Market sells a wide range of US coins including Peace and Morgan silver dollars, double eage gold coins, half eagles, half dimes and more.

Source: EzineArticles
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