What Are St. Gaudens Gold Coins?


Quick Answer

Saint-Gaudens gold coins are 20-dollar gold coins minted in the United States between the years 1907 and 1933. The coins are named after Saint Gaudens, the artist and sculptor who initially designed the coin. It was commissioned by U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt in an effort to beautify the American coin currency.

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Full Answer

The Saint-Gaudens coins are also commonly known as the Double Eagle. These pieces were first commissioned in 1850, but Roosevelt wanted to make one that was more appealing to the eye and artistically poignant. The design made by Saint Gaudens was delivered to the engraver Charles E. Barber and he changed the design slightly to make it easier to create and manufacture. The first versions of the coin had a negative reception and a controversy ensued. Americans were apparently angered that the coins lacked the phrase "In God We Trust." Congress later changed the coin so that the traditional message did appear in the update version.

The coin is currently one of the highest-selling coins in the United States to date. In 2002, a version of the 1933 coin was sold to private collectors for $7,590,020. The Double Eagle is considered one of Saint Gaudens most famous and aesthetically pleasing works.

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