1866 Liberty Head double eagle $20 gold coins were made in large quantity, with about 1 million pieces rolling off the U.S. Mint’s presses that year. A roughly equal share were made at the Philadelphia and San Francisco mints, with a small number coming from the New Orleans mint.
A major change occurred in 1866 concerning the motto IN GOD WE TRUST, which was added on the double eagle later in the year. That means there are two basic varieties of 1866 double eagles – the “without motto” reverse and the “with motto” reverse. The no-motto 1866 double eagles were struck at the San Francisco mint, while both the “S” mint and Philadelphia mint made the “with motto” 1866 double eagles.
Here’s a rundown of the mintages and values for the various 1866 double eagles:
1866 no motto, 698,745; $1,980
1866-S with motto, 842,250; $2,000
1866-S no motto, mintage included above; $11,500
1866 proof, 30; $200,000
*Values are for coins in a grade of Extremely Fine 40 unless otherwise specified.
1866 $20 double eagle gold coins weigh 33.44 grams and contain 0.9613 ounces of gold. Additionally, they are 34 millimeters wide, which means their diameter is about midway between the widths of a modern-day half dollar and silver dollar. The double eagle’s heavy weight and large size make them appealing coins to both numismatists and bullion investors.