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SERIES: Indian Head $5 1908-1929
LEVEL: Year, MintMark, & Major Variety

1908-S $5 (Regular Strike)

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PCGS MS68

PCGS MS67

PCGS MS67
PCGS #:
8512
Diameter:
21.60 millimeters
Designer:
Bela Lyon Pratt
Weight:
8.24 grams
Edge:
Reeded
Mintage:
82,000
Metal Content:
90% Gold, 10% Copper
Auction Record:
$164,500 • PCGS MS68 • 8-2-2012 • Heritage
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525
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12,500
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155,000
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Rarity and Survival Estimates (Explain)
Grades Survival
Estimate 
Numismatic
Rarity 
Relative Rarity
By Type 
Relative Rarity
By Series 
All Grades 1,666 R-4.7 3 / 24 3 / 24
60 or Better 716 R-5.5 9 / 24 9 / 24
65 or Better 140 R-7.6 19 / 24 TIE 19 / 24 TIE
Condition Census (Explain) Show more rows
Pos Grade Thumbnail Pedigree and History
1 MS68 PCGS grade

Previously in the collection of David Akers, per Legend Numismatics - Heritage 7/2005:10366, not sold - Jim O'Neal Collection - Heritage 1/2011:5135 (as PCGS MS68 18307662), $126,500 - Simpson Collection

2 MS67 PCGS grade

Simpson Collection

2 MS67 PCGS grade
2 MS67 PCGS grade

High Desert Collection (PCGS Set Registry)

2 MS67 PCGS grade  
Condition Census (Explain) Show fewer rows
Pos Grade Thumbnail Pedigree and History
1 MS68 PCGS grade

Previously in the collection of David Akers, per Legend Numismatics - Heritage 7/2005:10366, not sold - Jim O'Neal Collection - Heritage 1/2011:5135 (as PCGS MS68 18307662), $126,500 - Simpson Collection

2 MS67 PCGS grade

Simpson Collection

2 MS67 PCGS grade
2 MS67 PCGS grade

High Desert Collection (PCGS Set Registry)

2 MS67 PCGS grade  
2 MS67 PCGS grade  
2 MS67 PCGS grade  
2 MS67 PCGS grade  
2 MS67 estimated grade  
10 MS66 PCGS grade  
David Akers (1975/88): The 1908-S is not as rare, relatively speaking, as its low mintage would imply but it is still reasonably difficult to locate in MS-63 or better condition. There are more gems of this issue around than any of the other branch mint Indian Head half eagle and there are also a small number of really exceptional, nearly perfect specimens. The Virgil Brand hoard contained a number of gems as well as several superb pieces. In summary, this date is hard to find but not nearly as much so as many less publicized issues of the series.

The 1908-S can be one of the prettiest issues of the series. Most specimens have very good to excellent lustre and the color is typically reddish gold or coppery. There are also a number of specimens that have rich greenish gold or bright yellow gold color. The strike on a 1908-S is invariably sharp and the mintmark well defined. There are two basic surface finishes for this issue (the same is true for the 1908-S $10 and $20), satiny and "soft" frosty, the latter finish predominating by a wide margin.