Date…….1881 Grade…….PCGS EF45 CAC PCGS Price Guide.….…...32500 Population (PCGS).…...….6/25 Population (NGC).….…..…4/31 Population (CAC).…..…..…1/0 Serial Number……8994.45/37126135 PCGS Lookup Number…….8994
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$20.00 - 1881 PCGS EF45 CAC - $42500
VERY RARE PCGS EF45 1881 DOUBLE EAGLE WITH CAC APPROVAL
The 1881 is the first of a number of very rare low mintage double eagles struck for circulation at the Philadelphia mint in the 1880s. Just 2,199 were made and there are an estimated 60-70 known, with virtually all of the survivors showing poor eye appeal due to mishandling and poor curatorship by collectors.
This example is evenly worn and problem-free and it rates as among the few 1881 double eagles I have seen or sold with positive overall eye appeal. It is very “meaty” for the grade with flashes of prooflike reflectivity in the reflected areas and light orange-gold hues seen no both sides. Some scattered marks can be seen on the bust but these do not detract.
Since early 2011, only two PCGS EF45 1881 double eagles have sold at auction and the most recent APR is Heritage 4/18: 4420 at $31,200 for a low-end non-CAC coin. The last PCGS AU50 to sell at auction brought $34,500 back in July 2011.
Among the rare Philadelphia double eagles of this decade, the 1881 is much scarcer than the low mintage 1885 and slightly more obtainable than the 1886 with the 1882 clearly being the most difficult issue of this era.
An extremely important coin for the advanced specialist and one of the few truly rare Liberty Head double eagles whcih can be called “undervalued.”
CAC has only approved two 1881 business strike double eagles in all grades combined: an EF40 and this newly-approved EF45.