1859-O $10.00 PCGS AU53 CAC

Old Green Holder. By today's standards I think this coin is closer to grading AU55 and it is clearly among the finest known of this rare date. The 1859-O is the second rarest eagle from this mint, trailing the low mintage 1883-O. Only 2,300 were struck and it is estimated that four to five dozen are known today with most in the VF35 to EF45 range. In AU, the 1859-O eagle is very rare, especially with natural color and surfaces. This piece may possibly trace its origin to a European source as it has the sort of dirty two-tone appearance that is seen on some American gold coins of this era that were sent overseas. The obverse and reverse show deep greenish and orange-gold color with a good deal of luster below; the high spots are a bit lighter in hue. The strike is about average for the date with some weakness at the radial lines in the stars but the centers are nicely detailed. No serious marks can be seen with the naked eye and the eye appeal is really exceptional for an issue that is seldom seen with a decent appearance; let alone a good one. The last APR for an 1859-O eagle in AU53 is Goldberg 9/10: 2977 at $21,850 but this coin was bright and low end in my opinion. Since 2000. there have been just two other AU53's sold with the best of these being Heritage 6/05: 7908 (an NGC AU53) which brought $28,750. For many years, the 1859-O was the highest priced New Orleans eagle but it has been overtaken by the 1883-O. An 1883-O in AU53 to AU55 with great eye appeal could bring $75,000-85,000 in today's market which sort of leads me to think that choice examples of the 1859-O are currently undervalued. This statement makes even more sense considering how popular Liberty Head eagles have become in the last two or three years. An important coin!