History, Information, and Value of 1879-O Gold Liberty Double Eagle
Value of 1879-O $20 Double Eagle
This is a well struck New Orleans date with most examples overall boldly defined. When present, lack of detail is usually minor and confined to isolated peripheral areas. Luster is often semi-prooflike, although a few satin to frosty examples are known. It should be stressed, however, that only a small percentage of surviving examples retain appreciable mint luster. Liberally abraded surfaces are the norm for this issue. The 1879-O double eagle is the first New Orleans Mint double eagle struck since 1861, the last double eagle from that coinage facility, and the only one of the Type 3 Liberty Head design. These facts, combined with the rarity of survivors in all grades, have made it extremely popular with advanced collectors. Only 100 or so examples have survived, most of which are at the VF or EF level. AU coins are rare, while the number of Mint State pieces can be counted on two hands. The finest example known to NGC has been graded MS-63, while the top-of-the-pop slot at PCGS belongs to the MS-62 sold in Stack’s and Sotheby’s joint sale of the Dallas Bank Collection in October 2001.