History, Information, and Value of 1871-S Gold Liberty Double Eagle
Value of 1871-S $20 Double Eagle
As a relatively high mintage issue, striking quality varies for the 1871-S double eagle. Most examples are well produced with overall bold, if not sharp definition. There are exceptions, however, and some examples are softly defined over the high points of Liberty’s portrait and/or along the left or right obverse border. The typical survivor is heavily abraded with numerous handling marks on both sides from commercial use. On the other hand, high grade examples display luster in a vibrant satin or frosty texture. The highest mintage issue of the year, the 1871-S is easier to obtain in all grades than the 1871 and 1871-CC. It is readily collectible in VF, EF and even AU grades. Mint State examples are scarce, however, and almost all are confined to the MS-60 to MS-62 grade range. The 1871-S is all but unobtainable in Choice Uncirculated, the finest examples known to PCGS and NGC grading MS-64.