Lot 1188
1853 U. S. Assay Office $20 900 THOUS., California Territorial Gold
Lot Details & Additional Photographs
Authenticated and graded by NGC as AU DETAILS / RIM FILING. This being an historic official United States Government $20 gold piece that pre-dates the establishment of the San Francisco branch mint. The obverse has the familiar American eagle and notes the coin is of .900 fine gold; the reverse reads UNITED STATES ASSAY / OFFICE OF GOLD / SAN FRANCISCO / CALIFORNIA.1853.

This coin was once likely mounted in jewelry as there are two small areas along the top rim that look like shallow depressions from being bumped. Closer inspection, however, reveals some deceptively shallow traces of filing on those areas, perhaps to allow the coin to fit in a bezel. The encapsulation covers this up, however we have attached two images taken by the consignor before slabbing that show the limited extent of damage to the upper rim. Bumps or file marks aside, this coin has a strong presence with original surfaces and its tangible connection to California's celebrated Gold Rush era.