Cert #8570 21594252

Coin Number 33

The first Proof eagle is the incredible 1804 from the King of Siam set. It grades Proof-64 Cameo and is one of just three or possibly four Proof examples known. This coin offers stunning mirror fields and Cameo contrast, against which the frosted devices really stand out. Research by John Dannreuther has discovered that after Thomas Jefferson suspended eagle and silver dollar production in 1804, there was no logical way to represent these denominations to create 1834 dated sets of United States coins for the King of Siam and Sultan of Muscat. Both of these denominations were suspended because the value of the gold or silver fluctuated to the point that many of the coins produced by the Philadelphia Mint were exported and melted in foreign lands. William Kneass, the Mint’s Engraver in 1834 started looking around and found a leftover Eagle obverse die with only the first three date digits or 180 in place, he then completed the die with a digit 4 punch that was used for half dollars in 1834. This is a Plain 4, and not a Crosslet 4 as seen on the previous 1804 obverse die. The reverse die he found was an unused half dollar reverse from 1805-1806, which was identical in diameter and design to that used to strike eagles or half dollars, both being interchangeable in size. Both dies had rusted over the last 30 years, so Kneass had to polish out the rust and reengrave certain fine details before these proof gold eagles were struck. This coin is simply astounding for it quality and eye appeal, with Cameo contrast and dazzling mirror fields offsetting the frosty devices. This is a most extraordinary feast for the numismatic eye.

Ex King of Siam