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SERIES: St. Gaudens $20 1907-1915
LEVEL: Year, MintMark, & Major Variety

1909 $20 (Proof)

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PCGS PR67+

PCGS PR67

PCGS PR67
PCGS #:
9206
Diameter:
34.00 millimeters
Designer:
Augustus Saint Gaudens
Weight:
33.40 grams
Edge:
Lettered
Mintage:
67
Metal Content:
90% Gold, 10% Copper
Auction Record:
$228,000 • PCGS PR67 • 1-3-2018 • Heritage Auctions
Show Plus Grades Hide eBay
60
14,500
60
61
16,500
61
62
21,500
2
62
62+
23,500
62+
63
31,000
4
63
63+
34,000
63+
64+
68,500
64+
65
140,000
2
65
65+
160,000
65+
66+
225,000
66+
67+
280,000
1
67+
Rarity and Survival Estimates (Explain)
Grades Survival
Estimate 
Numismatic
Rarity 
Relative Rarity
By Type 
Relative Rarity
By Series 
All Grades 43 R-8.6 5 / 9 10 / 14
60 or Better 44 R-8.6 5 / 9 10 / 14
65 or Better 17 R-9.2 3 / 9 TIE 8 / 14 TIE
Condition Census (Explain) Show more rows
Pos Grade Thumbnail Pedigree and History
1 PR67+ PCGS grade
2 PR67 PCGS grade

Sam & Rie Bloomfield Collection - Sotheby’s 12/1996:35, $46,200 - Philip Morse Collection - Heritage 11/2005:6563, $195,500 - Heritage 1/2006:3630, $184,000 - Burgess Lee Berlin, M.D., J.D. Collection - Heritage 1/2018:5186, $228,000

2 PR67 PCGS grade
2 PR67 PCGS estimated grade  

Possibly Sotheby's 6/1993:185, $118,250 - Tacasyl Collection - Bonham’s 9/2013:1025, $184,860

5 PR66 PCGS grade

Heritage 7/1994:7720 - Legend Numismatics, sold privately in 1994 - “1994 Collection” (PCGS Set Registry)  - Legend Rare Coin Auctions 7/2017:43, $193,875

Condition Census (Explain) Show fewer rows
Pos Grade Thumbnail Pedigree and History
1 PR67+ PCGS grade
2 PR67 PCGS grade

Sam & Rie Bloomfield Collection - Sotheby’s 12/1996:35, $46,200 - Philip Morse Collection - Heritage 11/2005:6563, $195,500 - Heritage 1/2006:3630, $184,000 - Burgess Lee Berlin, M.D., J.D. Collection - Heritage 1/2018:5186, $228,000

2 PR67 PCGS grade
2 PR67 PCGS estimated grade  

Possibly Sotheby's 6/1993:185, $118,250 - Tacasyl Collection - Bonham’s 9/2013:1025, $184,860

5 PR66 PCGS grade

Heritage 7/1994:7720 - Legend Numismatics, sold privately in 1994 - “1994 Collection” (PCGS Set Registry)  - Legend Rare Coin Auctions 7/2017:43, $193,875

5 PR66 PCGS grade  

Stack's/Bowers 8/2015:10288, $99,875

5 PR66 PCGS grade

Tom Koessl Collection

8 PR66 estimated grade  

Stack's/Bowers 8/2011:7801, $132,250

8 PR65 PCGS grade  
8 PR65 PCGS grade  
David Akers (1975/88): in my 443 catalogue survey, the 1909 appeared more often in proof than any other Saint-Gaudens Double Eagle. I have no explanation for this since it has been my experience that the 1909 is one of the rarest proofs of this type. It is also more rare than most of the Liberty Head proofs after 1895. It is my opinion that no more than 20-25 proofs of this date still exist.

Ron Guth: The Proof 1909 $20 is a rare coin that suffered from a lack of interest because of the unusual matte finish (collectors preferred than, as they do now, the brilliant and cameo finishes of previous years) and the high face value that represented a significant sum of money in 1909.  Thus, very few were made, few were sold, and even fewer were cared for properly after the fact.  The premium charged by the government for Matte Proof gold coins in 1909 was such a small amount over the face value that there was no significant loss if the coins were spent, nor was there any great profit incentive to hold them for future gains.  Who knew then that they would be so desirable and valuable today?

Once or twice a year, a 1909 Proof $20 will cross the auction block, but it is difficult to determine how many of these are reappearances of the same coin.  The lack of sufficient pedigree markers and pervasive conservation makes plate-matching problematic.  Nonetheless, a guesstimate of 40 to 50 survivors out of the original mintage of 67 seems reasonable, if not a trifle high. 

The finest example of a Proof 1909 $20 is the NGC PR68 that sold for $184,860 in 2013.  However, the price record belongs to the PCGS PR67 Morse Collection example that sold in 2005 for $195,500.