P. Scott Rubin: The Mormon 1849 $10 Gold is one of the rarest of the territorial gold issues. It is considered a rarity 7 (or 4 to 12 known); approximately ten examples are known to exist today (January, 2014). The Mormon $10 was one of the first, if not the first, coins struck from California gold rush gold.
The Mormon Tens were first struck in December, 1848, with records showing that only twenty-five coins were struck on the first day of minting and another twenty-one struck one week after the first striking. Records also show that five of the first day's striking were paid out on December 12th, 1848, even though these coins bore the date of 1849.
Four denominations of 1849-dated Mormon gold coins are known, but only the Ten Dollar includes the designation "PURE GOLD" and lacks the letters "G.S.L.C.P.G." (which stands for "Great Salt Lake City Pure Gold" and which is on the $2½, $5 and $20 coins).
The story is that members of the Mormon Battalion of the U.S. Army, who had fought in the Mexican War, worked for James Marshall helping to construct a saw mill for Sutter when gold was first discovered. On their return to Utah, they brought some of this gold back with them, and it was used to make the first Mormon gold coins.
© 1999 - 2014 Collectors Universe NASDAQ: CLCT