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Patterns - PR
Year, MintMark, & Major Variety
1865 $10 J-449 (Proof)
David Akers (1975/88)
: Description: Obverse. The regular die; identical to J-284 except for the date. Reverse. The regular die adopted in 1866. Similar to J-284 except that the motto on the scroll above the eagle's head is inscribed IN GOD WE TRUST.
Comments: Like the 1865 half eagle pattern, J-445, this pattern is a transitional piece and is the only transitional pattern out of the 13 pattern eagles struck by the U.S. Mint. (This total of 13 is the largest number of patterns for any gold denomination. Double eagles are next with 11 and so these two denominations account for nearly half the total number of different U.S. gold patterns.)
The 1865 transitional eagle, along with the matching half eagle and double eagle, were offered at auction in the June, 1870 Mason and Company sale. In that catalogue it was noted that only two sets were struck in gold, presumably the set offered and the set in the Mint Collection. Subsequently the entire set was owned by William Woodin, Waldo Newcomer, and King Farouk. At the sale of Farouk's collection, the set was finally broken up. The double eagle was purchased by Dr. Wilkison while the half eagle and eagle went to parties unknown.
Although it is difficult to say for certain, available photographs indicate that the Farouk specimen was the superior of the two known examples of J-449.
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