Roger Burdette's Saint Gaudens Double Eagles Book
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Circulation Use Of Saint-Gaudens DE:  For the 1908-S Saint, this comment from Akers stuck out:  "...Unlike almost all of the double eagle issues minted after World War I, the 1908-S issue was intended and used for general circulation."

Is that just because 15-20 years later paper currency was just more accepted ?  Is that a generalization applicable to West Coast/San Francisco gold coin usage before WW I ?

Mintage was only 22,000 so they couldn't have expected much commercial use.

Edited by GoldFinger1969
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30 minutes ago, RWB said:

Unfortunately, Akers gives no source or argument for his comment. Give him a break, also -- that statement was made a long time ago.

Could be.....just thought it stood out. 

But made a long time ago or recently (granted, he passed in 2012) it would still be interesting/unique.  My guess is there were some anectdotal quotes or references to Double Eagles in the early-1900's on the West Coast and he and others generalized (exaggerated ?) to the current quote.

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Possibly. Eagles and half eagles were the primary high value gold along the west. $20's were too heavy for most uses and checks predominated for large purchases. $20's were also good for squirreling away in metal cans. After the Treasury's replacement program in 1917, the volume of gold coin declined (from FRB data) with large paper becoming much more prevalent. Also, gold deflated in purchasing power during the War.

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If you heard or knew a newly-designed cent was being minted for circulation, reportedly in comparatively infinitesimal numbers compared to its predecessors (22,000) wouldn't you be inclined to keep one despite its considerable face value? Anecdotally, I recall reading somewhere that that is exactly what happened to the newly-designed Lincoln Cent, some 484,000 of which were released only a year later, in presumably M.S. condition -- an inordinately large number of which were squirreled away in tin cans near hiking trails. ;) or buried deep within armoires.  

 

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4 hours ago, Quintus Arrius said:

If you heard or knew a newly-designed cent was being minted for circulation, reportedly in comparatively infinitesimal numbers compared to its predecessors (22,000) wouldn't you be inclined to keep one despite its considerable face value? 

Mintage numbers probably weren't that readily available.  Would have been tough except for astute collectors and readers of early numismatic newsletters to be aware of that year's low mintage.  Also, back then they tended to not focus on mintmarks but total for the year (1908) which would have been in the millions.

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1 minute ago, GoldFinger1969 said:

Mintage numbers probably weren't that readily available.  Would have been tough except for astute collectors and readers of early numismatic newsletters to be aware of that year's low mintage.  Also, back then they tended to not focus on mintmarks but total for the year (1908) which would have been in the millions.

Sorry, San Franciscans were more concerned with earthquake recovery in 1906 than a 1908-S Double Eagle or 1909-S VDB ( which I still find to be unobtrusive and inoffensive). All the hoopla only increased its desirability as super special.

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40 minutes ago, Quintus Arrius said:

Sorry, San Franciscans were more concerned with earthquake recovery in 1906 than a 1908-S Double Eagle or 1909-S VDB ( which I still find to be unobtrusive and inoffensive). All the hoopla only increased its desirability as super special.

Actually, in the aftermath of such a disaster, you'd think people would want their $$$ in their home in large bills and gold coins and not with a bank that could get leveled.

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1 hour ago, GoldFinger1969 said:

Actually, in the aftermath of such a disaster, you'd think people would want their $$$ in their home in large bills and gold coins and not with a bank that could get leveled.

 No, maybe YOU’D think that, but I would not. Goldbugs are a different breed.

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1 hour ago, VKurtB said:

 No, maybe YOU’D think that, but I would not. Goldbugs are a different breed.

You realize there was no "The FDIC Stands Behind You at $250,000 per account" sign at the banks at that time, right Kurt ?  xD

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@GoldFinger1969 To be clear, if you are not referring to the Steam Ship Central America, to what "Hoard" are you referring, and more importantly, what source did you consult to get the minimal information which you've gotten and posted?

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1 hour ago, Quintus Arrius said:

@GoldFinger1969 To be clear, if you are not referring to the Steam Ship Central America, to what "Hoard" are you referring, and more importantly, what source did you consult to get the minimal information which you've gotten and posted?

I am talking about the Central American Hoard of 1983 which had close to 47,000 coins and most of them double eagles and most of those DEs were Saints. 

Lots of early Saints from 1909-1915 and 1922.  From Heritage including comments from David Akers: 

"...In 1983, a large hoard of U.S. double eagles, mostly Saints, but many Liberty Heads as well, was discovered in Central America. The hoard consisted of approximately 47,000 coins, more than 90% of them uncirculated, including many thousands which graded MS64, MS65, and even higher. The hoard was purchased by Manfra, Tordella and Brookes (MTB)."

"...When Gerald Bauman of Manfra, Tordella and Brookes called me one day in 1983 to tell me about the incredible hoard of U.S. double eagles they had just acquired from Central America, he said they had large quantities of scarce, beautiful, original high quality Liberty Heads (1901-S, 1902-S, and 1905-S among others), and also a great many incredible quality Saints including such dates as 1909-S, 1910-S, 1911-S, 1914-S, 1915-S, and 1916-S. Obviously, I was impressed and interested in seeing them and purchasing as many as I could. But then Bauman let the hammer drop and said the hoard also included hundreds of seldom, if ever seen, choice uncirculated and even better examples of the 1908-D No Motto, 1908-D With Motto, 1909-D and 1922-S. Needless to say, I could not get to New York City fast enough and it turned out that everything Bauman had said about the coins was absolutely true, perhaps even understated. After spending an entire afternoon looking at representative samples of each issue, we discussed the terms under which I could buy the coins I wanted. My greatest interest was in the four rarest issues, including the 1909-D, and Bauman said that I could pick out what I wanted on an individual basis if I were willing to pay a substantial premium price and would take a minimum guaranteed quantity of each issue. After seeing the quality of the coins it was clear this was a reasonable request on Bauman's part and an easy decision on mine to agree. I still rank this as one of my greatest thrills in the coin business, both for myself personally and for the many collectors to whom I sold the coins. The 1909-D and 1922-S were the real prizes of the hoard and it is not hyperbole to note that virtually all of the choice, very choice and gem uncirculated examples of both of these issues that are available to collectors today came from the Central American hoard."

Roger's book may have more information on the hoard or he may have just quoted Akers and others.  And Bowers book on hoards probably has its own commentary but I haven't bought the book yet.

 

Edited by GoldFinger1969
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@GoldFinger1969 The very fact the facts concerning this discovery were not widely publicized suggests something akin to grave-robbing.  Central America is comprised of a number of countries.  I sense theft, corruption, smuggling -- and possibly an episode recreating the circumstances of this "discovery" and massive repatriation of stolen assets on American Greed.  :gossip:

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47 minutes ago, Quintus Arrius said:

@GoldFinger1969 The very fact the facts concerning this discovery were not widely publicized suggests something akin to grave-robbing.  Central America is comprised of a number of countries.  I sense theft, corruption, smuggling -- and possibly an episode recreating the circumstances of this "discovery" and massive repatriation of stolen assets on American Greed.  :gossip:

Not proven, but appears to be a hoard from El Salvador which was in the midst of a civil war in 1983.

I misread your post...no, this has nothing to do with the SS Central America but with Central American countries.

Edited by GoldFinger1969
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11 minutes ago, GoldFinger1969 said:

Not proven, but appears to be a hoard from El Salvador which was in the midst of a civil war in 1983.

I misread your post...no, this has nothing to do with the SS Central America but with Central American countries.

If I see anything anywhere on it, I will let you know.

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15 minutes ago, Quintus Arrius said:

If I see anything anywhere on it, I will let you know.

Regrettably, as Roger detailed in his book, alot of the documentation and back-story regarding the hoard were lost when MTB's lower Manhattan offices were flooded by Hurricane Sandy in 2012. :mad: 

Most of the story was on paper, not digital. :(

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39 minutes ago, Jason Abshier said:

I gotta get me some RWB books to go along with my RWB beer ! 

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The distributor fro most of my books is Wizard Coins Supply.  The Saint-Gaudens double eagle book is available only from Heritage Auctions, and Whitman published my Peace dollar book (4th edition).

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1 hour ago, RWB said:

The distributor fro most of my books is Wizard Coins Supply.  The Saint-Gaudens double eagle book is available only from Heritage Auctions, and Whitman published my Peace dollar book (4th edition).

I definitely look into it . Thanks for information … I was drinking a yuengling beer you name on here popped up 

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3 hours ago, RWB said:

The distributor fro most of my books is Wizard Coins Supply.  The Saint-Gaudens double eagle book is available only from Heritage Auctions, and Whitman published my Peace dollar book (4th edition).

Who's your beer distributor ? xD

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11 hours ago, GoldFinger1969 said:

Did you do the earlier 3 editions, Roger ?

No. Whitman wanted the Peace dollar book for their 'Guide Book' series, so they published them all.

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5 hours ago, RWB said:

No. Whitman wanted the Peace dollar book for their 'Guide Book' series, so they published them all.

I asked them when we might get a 2nd Edition of the Double Eagle book (2004).....no response to date. :(  

Even if only updated prices and minimal new commentary, it shouldn't take 17 years to get a new version I would think.

Edited by GoldFinger1969
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It will take a while to prepare an update to the DE book. I don't know sales or other business numbers on the book, but I know how much work it took to create, and that's not likely to be repeated soon. Please let me know when you get an answer from Heritage.

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16 hours ago, RWB said:

It will take a while to prepare an update to the DE book. 

Are you talking about your Saint-Gaudens DE book as an "update" to the smaller/thinner Morse Collection book (2006) put out by Heritage ?  I kind of considered your book separate and new, not an updated edition, since it is almost 2x as many pages and not just 99% a re-copying plus updated numbers and some new commentary here-and-there.  And I think the Morse book borrowed heavily from the actual catalogs in late-2005 from Heritage so it was pretty much just a re-packaging in large sections.

I was talking about an update to the Whitman Double Eagle book by Bowers, not yours, Roger.  Only edition is dated 2004.

Most of the 2004 Whitman Double Eagle book is still valid.  Just need updated prices....more recent sales data like your book....new/updated information on hoards like SS Central America (Liberty DEs)....and some new commentaries added on or brand-new for some chapters.

Certainly will take some time....but nothing as much as writing and creating the 1st Edition of the book from scratch.  Or your magnus opusxD

Edited by GoldFinger1969
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OK. I misunderstood. (I don't consider the Morse book in any relationship to the one I wrote.)

Whitman has not asked me about updating Bowers' DE book, and they usually do all the price changes internally.

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