Coin Specifications

Category: Indian Head $10 (1907-1933)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 74
Catalog: KM-130
Obverse Designer: Augustus Saint-Gaudens
Reverse Designer: Augustus Saint-Gaudens
Composition: Gold
Fineness: 0.9000
Weight: 16.72g
AGW: 0.4840oz
Melt Value: $640.82 (8/29/2016)
Diameter: 27mm
Edge: 46 Raised Stars
Numismatic specification data provided by Krause Publications NumisMaster.
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1909 $10 PF obverse 1909 $10 PF reverse

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There are no NGC varieties for this coin.

Description & Analysis

'Time and tide wait for no man,' goes the old bromide, and tastes change with the times in numismatics, as in all other things. What was once in disfavor is today greatly admired. When the new dark matte proof gold coinage of the Saint-Gaudens design was introduced, the collector reaction was near-uniform condemnation.

The eagles debuted in 1907, and the proof eagles of that year are legendary rarities that Breen calls 'so rare as to be controversial.' Nonetheless, Jeff Garrett and Ron Guth, in their Gold Encyclopedia, enumerate one 1907 Rolled Edge, Periods satin proof and two 1907 matte proofs.

The year 1908 is the first for which proofs are relatively available, produced to the extent of 116 specimens. Although there are a few outliers, the most commonly seen finish is a dark matte finish, one that Dr. Robert Loewinger in his reference on proof gold calls 'an olive dark matte finish.' Garrett and Guth write that 'orders for these coins were large, as the 1908 coins were the first Proofs generally available to collectors.' After the outcry arose against their distinctive, dark, and olive-drab appearance, the Mint tried a compromise in 1909 and 1910, with the Satin or Roman finish proofs. Of the latter coins, famed early pattern collector-numismatist and future U.S. Treasurer William H. Woodin wrote:

{blockquote}'I am surprised at the statement that the dull finish of the gold proof coins was objected to by many collectors. If any collectors objected to this finish it was because they did not understand that the St. Gaudens [sic] designs are not adapted to the production of polished proofs. The present proofs of the St. Gaudens designs and of the Pratt designs are simply rotten. I know of no other word to express it.'{/blockquote}

Woodin preferred the dark matte finish--which could not be mistaken for circulation-strike coinage--to the lighter, somewhat ambiguous semibrilliant finish of the Roman coins, which appeared neither fish nor fowl, to Woodin's view.

In any case, with the passage of a century, collectors today treasure either the matte or Roman finish proofs.

Description and Analysis courtesy of Heritage Auctions and may not be republished without written permission.


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Price Guide

Last Updated: 7/12/2016

Click on a price to see historical prices, comparison charts and trends.

1909 $10 PF
Base $ - - - - - - - - - 8300 10000 15500 25500 40000 77500 105000 160000 - - -
$ - - - - - - - - - - - - 183000 -

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Total Graded: 40
Low Grade: 63
Average Grade: 65
High Grade: 68

Upcoming Auctions

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Auction House
Sale / Lot
1/12/2005 NGC PF 67   Heritage Auctions 2005 Ft. Lauderdale FL. (FUN) Signature Sale #360, 360/Lot# 30648 $80,500.00
9/23/2007 NGC PF 64   Goldberg September 23-26, 2007 Pre-Long Beach Coin and Currency Auction, 42/Lot# 3393 $22,425.00
7/27/2013 NGC PF 67   Stack's Bowers The August 2013 Chicago ANA World's Fair of Money , 192/Lot# 4538 $141,000.00
3/27/2014 NGC PF 65   Stack's Bowers March 2014 Baltimore Auction, 6008/Lot# 4102 $55,812.50
1/7/2015 NGC PF 67   Heritage Auctions 2015 January 7 - 12 FUN US Coins Signature Auction - Orlando Session(2), 1216/Lot# 4362 $99,875.00
4/22/2015 NGC PF 65   Heritage Auctions 2015 April 22 - 26 CSNS US Coins Signature Auction - Chicago Session(4), 1219/Lot# 5218 $82,250.00
1/6/2016 PCGS PF 65   Heritage Auctions 2016 January 6 - 11 FUN US Coins Signature Auction - Tampa Session(4), 1231/Lot# 5636 $70,500.00

NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1909 $10 PF
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