MCMVII 1907 $20 Gold Coin
Extremely Rare 1907 $20 Gold Coin Soars
to over $2.7 Million in the Stack`s Bowers Galleries Baltimore Auction on
June 29, 2012
Image supplied by Stack`s Bowers Galleries
The finest-graded specimen of America’s “most beautiful coin,” the MCMVII
(1907) Proof Ultra High Relief double eagle graded Proof-69 by PCGS, crossed
the auction block on the evening of Friday, June 29, 2012, and with the fall
of the hammer a record price of $2,760,000 had been won at the Stack’s
Bowers Galleries Official Auction of the Whitman Coin and Collectibles Expo
in Baltimore, Md. Stack’s Bowers Galleries is a subsidiary of Spectrum Group
Extremely Rare 1907 $20 Ultra High Relief Double Eagle Soars to Over $2.7
Million in the Stack's Bowers Galleries Baltimore Auction on June 29, 2012
(Photo: Business Wire)
The coin, minted in 1907, has the date expressed in Roman numerals as MCMVII.
It is one of about 20 coins with Ultra High Relief or sculptured detail. The
story goes back to President Theodore Roosevelt in 1905 when he employed
Augustus Saint-Gaudens, America’s most famous sculptor, to redesign the
coinage. The artist, working in his studio in Cornish, N.H. (now a National
Historic Site), began with the $20 gold double eagle, the largest
denomination gold coin.
For the obverse he created a bold image of Miss Liberty in the figure of
Victory, striding forward holding a torch and palm branch with the U.S.
Capitol in the distance. For the reverse, an eagle in flight was sculpted.
In early 1907 about 20 coins were struck at the Philadelphia Mint and given
to the president and dignitaries. Later in the year the same design was
modified to lower relief and 12,367 were struck.
Today, several of the MCMVII Ultra High Relief coins are in museums
including one on display at the Smithsonian, and time and again surveys
among numismatists have rated this as America's most beautiful coin design.
Only rarely is one available at auction. The coin auctioned today opened at
$2,125,000 and the room enjoyed excited bidding competition. This coin is
considered one of the great icons of American numismatics; the example is
the finest graded specimen known.
Steve Contursi, president of Rare Coin Wholesalers from Irvine, Calif.,
purchased the coin via phone participation. He is in 50/50 percent
partnership on the coin with Don Kagin, president and owner of Kagin’s Inc.
Contursi and Kagin are no strangers to purchasing the finest, rarest and
most valuable coins in the world. Seven years ago they partnered on the
unique 1787 Brasher Doubloon, America’s first gold coin, which was sold
December 2012 for $7.4 million.
“This coin now ranks as No. 7 in the top 10 prices realized at auction,”
said Chris Napolitano, president of Stack’s Bowers Galleries. “The all-time
record for a coin sold at auction is $7.59 million when we partnered with
Sotheby’s to sell the only 1933-dated $20 Saint-Gaudens double eagle ever to
“We are extremely excited about owning this finest graded specimen of one of
America’s most desirable coins,” stated the new owners. “It combines all the
elements of rarity, desirability, artistic design and historical importance.
President Theodore Roosevelt wanted to emulate the beautiful high relief of
the ancient Greek coiners by bringing in the world renowned sculptor
Augustus Saint-Gaudens and he achieved just that.”
The next auction for Stack’s Bowers Galleries is currently estimated at $40
million plus as the Official Auctioneer of the American Numismatic
Association World’s Fair of Money in Philadelphia from August 2 through
August 12. Highlights from this event will be exhibited to the public at the
Stack’s Bowers gallery in Manhattan and in the Irvine, Calif., corporate
headquarters during the last weeks of July. For more information on this and
previews of upcoming auctions, please visit www.stacksbowers.com.
About Stack’s Bowers Galleries
Stack's Bowers Galleries, a division of Fortune 500 Company Spectrum Group
International Inc. (SPGZ.PK), was launched in January 2011, combining the
extraordinary histories of Stack's, the oldest rare coin auction and retail
company in America, with Bowers and Merena Auctions, one of the world’s
pre-eminent auctioneers of rare coins and paper money.
The two companies
unite to share a combined legacy that spans more than 100 years, and
includes the cataloging and sale of many of the most valuable collections to
ever cross an auction block – the John. J. Ford, Jr. and Louis E. Eliasberg,
Sr., collections, the Harry W. Bass, Jr., Collection, and the Norweb
Collection, to name just a few. Topping off this amazing numismatic history
is the inclusion of the world record for the highest price ever realized at
auction for a rare coin, the legendary 1933 Saint-Gaudens Double Eagle that
realized an astounding $7.59 million (sold in partnership with Sotheby’s).
The company is headquartered in Irvine, California, with offices in New
York, New Hampshire and Hong Kong. Stack’s Bowers Galleries is the Official
Auctioneer for several important numismatic conventions, including the ANA
World’s Fair of Money and ANA/PNG Pre-Show auctions, and the Whitman Coin
and Collectibles Expos in Baltimore, three times yearly, and also
Stack’s Bowers Galleries