When the San Francisco Mint began operations in 1854, it focused on the production of Eagles and Double Eagles, eventually creating over four million dollars in face value of just those two denominations. As significant a dollar mount that was, public demand for gold coins exceeded the supply. To fill the gap, Kellogg & Co. produced a $20 gold piece in 1855, one of the latest issues by any of the private minters. According to contemporary reports, the prolific Kellogg & Co. produced 1.5 times the output of the U.S. Mint and minted from $60,000 to $80,000 daily.
With such a vast mintage, the 1855 $20 Kellogg should be a common coin. However, the public's preference for official, U.S. Mint gold coins led to the eventual melting and recoinage of nearly all private Territorial issues. Today, it is difficult to locate a Kellogg $20 in any grade and, in Mint State, these coins are virtually non-existent. The highest grade assigned to a Kellogg $20 has been MS62, though the auction price record belongs to a PCGS AU58 example.
Kellogg $20 gold pieces can be found with long and short arrows on the reverse, though only the strong of heart (and wallet) can afford to collect Territorial gold by variety.
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