1875-S 20C MS (PCGS# 5298)

2005 November Dallas, TX Signature Auction Platinum Night #388

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    Heritage Auctions
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Lot Description
1875-S 20C MS68 PCGS. The brief production of the Twenty Cent piece seems rather predictable today. The ill-conceived denomination was a dismal failure in terms of practicality, being neither needed nor wanted. However little sense it makes to have a One Cent coin today, it made even less to push a Twenty Cent coin down the public's throat in the 1870s. Nevertheless, the expanding economy in the Far West was so strong during this period and the need for small silver coinage so great that even this albatross managed to circulate rather extensively. Still, the novelty of this first year issue and its comparatively high production of over 1.1 million pieces meant that a fair number were set aside for posterity, perhaps several thousand coins in total. The typical 1875-S in Mint State has been rather carelessly preserved or poorly produced, often displaying substandard luster and noticeable softness on the major design elements (particularly the eagle's left wingtip). As a result most fall into the MS62-63 grade range and it is unusual to find an example that surpasses the Choice level. All it takes is one glimpse at this amazing coin to recognize that it is really something special. The pristine surfaces are overflowing with shimmering, satiny luster while speckled golden and violet peripheral toning provides the ideal accent to virtually untoned centers. The strike, while not totally full, is about as strong as one could hope to find on the issue. As it should be with an MS68, inspection with a glass only makes one more appreciative of the coin's positive attributes. Easily among the nicest business strike Twenty Cent pieces in existence and the finest 1875-S certified by PCGS with NGC showing a similar single MS68 coin in their Census. Population: 1 in 68, 0 finer (9/05).
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