- United States Coins
- Large Head Indian Princess Gold Dollars
- 1859 Large Head Indian Princess Gold Dollar
1859 Large Head Indian Princess Gold Dollar
1859 Indian Princess Large Head gold dollars are sought by numismatists who appreciate historic, pre-1933 U.S. gold coins. These gold dollar coins circulated heavily in the West, and are a byproduct of the surpluses of the valuable yellow metal during the Gold Rush days of the 1840s and 1850s. While gold dollar coins saw extensive use in commerce, they also made popular holiday gifts, and thus many were saved in better grades.
Here is a rundown of the various gold dollar coins that were struck at the Philadelphia, Charlotte (C), Dahlonega (D), and San Francisco mints; it should also be noted that a very limited number of proof gold dollar coins was also minted:
1859, 168,244 minted; $250
1859-C, 5,235; $2,000
1859-D, 4,952; $2,250
1859-S, 15,000; $575
1859 proof, 80; $12,000
*Values are for coins grading Extremely Fine-40, unless otherwise noted.
Still, as small, relatively low-value gold coins, many of these pieces were melted, turned into jewelry, or otherwise rendered unrecognizable in numismatic terms. Thus, far fewer survive today than the mintage figures above would probably suggest.
Gold dollar coins are probably a better numismatic investment than they are a bullion investment. This is because the collector value of these old gold coins is far higher than the intrinsic gold value of these coins, thus making their price premiums far higher than similarly sized gold coins designed for the bullion investor. Indeed, collectors value these 1859 gold dollar coins, as they are not only scarce, but also represent numismatic history. They were designed by United States Mint Chief Engraver James B. Longacre, who also created the Flying Eagle cent, Indian Head cent, and two-cent piece.