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Two gold dollars were issued in 1903 to commemorate the Louisiana Purchase, one featuring Thomas Jefferson on the obverse and the other displaying a bust of William McKinley. More than 250,000 coins were minted, but only about 35,000 examples were sold at the asking price of three dollars per coin. The sales were about evenly split between the two varieties. Within a year the price had fallen to less than two dollars per coin, leaving a sour taste in the mouths of collectors and having a deleterious effect on the sales of Lewis and Clark gold dollars issued the following year. Collectors prize the issue today, as the coins were well produced and many examples have been carefully preserved.
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