Melt on 2009 Saint-Gaudens UHR Tops Purchase Price|
June 06, 2011
This article was originally printed in Coins Magazine.
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Gold continues its upward march as this is being written. It is at $1,504 now, but it’s anyone’s guess as to how high or how low it will be by the time this issue arrives in subscribers’ hands and appears on newsstands across the nation.
In 2009, when I decided to purchase one of the Mint’s reproductions of the Saint-Gaudens ultra high relief gold $20s, I didn’t imagine it would be worth more now as bullion than it cost. Of course, the collector value on this piece is much higher than its melt value, but having purchased my example among the first wave of buyers, before the Mint increased its price, I paid just under $1,200.
At the time, gold wasn’t cheap. An ounce was selling in the range of $850. I remember thinking that besides the collector value, which would be decided by how many were minted and how much demand there was for the coin, it was nice to know that, in containing an ounce of gold, it also had a strong bullion backing. If bullion stayed at the $850 mark, I was risking only around $350.
However, I didn’t really make the purchase as an investment, but as a collector and a fan of history. I’ve written about Augustus Saint-Gaudens on a number of occasions; visited Aspet in Cornish, N.H., Saint-Gaudens’ home; photographed the “Victory” on his “Sherman Monument” in New York; and admired high relief specimens of his gold $20 at many a coin show.
This, I knew, was likely to be my only chance to afford an example for my collection. Plus, as I said, there’s the history aspect of it. As longtime readers of this magazine are aware, relatives of Saint-Gaudens’ model for Liberty on the coin have written for this publication and its sister publication, Numismatic News, about their family connection with this famed gold coin. They are good friends, and this adds to my interest in all of Saint-Gaudens’ works.
So, even if gold continues to rise, this is one piece of precious metal that will stay in its current form.
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On June 7, 2011 Mr. Ree
On June 7, 2011 Mr. Ree
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