Designer - Proof Reverse - Al Maletsky - American Bald Eagle flying above Southeastern Wetlands and alligator crawling in a primordial swamp. #2 coin in the five coin "Vistas of Liberty" series.
Mitch Spivack: As many of you who will read my commentary on the various proof platinum Statue of Liberty coins will soon discover, I am a huge fan of the entire U.S. proof platinum complex. The mintage figures for proof platinum are among the lowest of any mintages for proof type coins since 1915. And, what is cool about these proof platinum coins is that each and every year is a separate reverse design making each coin a "one-year type" coin.
Currently, there are at least (3) popular ways to collect a coin such as this one. First, some collectors enjoy collecting this coin in its original government packaging. There is also some demand for these coins in that format coming from self-directed IRA related activity. I will discuss this development in future commentary on this series.
Second, some collectors enjoy collecting this coin in a lovely PCGS-PR69DCAM holder, which is often a beautiful piece and high enough grade for the vast majority of collectors out there to fully enjoy. It is not uncommon for collectors to pursue the entire 1997-date $100 proof 1 oz. platinum series in PCGS-PR69DCAM grade as their modern eagle collection of choice. And, with the current price of platinum, that collection can keep most collectors busy for a very long time as they collect all of the dates!
Third, a coin such as this is collected in "PCGS perfect" PR70DCAM grade. I have met quite a few collectors pursuing this coin in PCGS-PR70DCAM grade (one of the toughest actually in the entire $100 series thus far to obtain in top grade) and some collectors even seek the "most perfect" of the "perfect" specimens for their sets; those coins with meticulous surfaces even free from planchet imperfections of a pre-striking nature that, in some cases, may not technically affect the "70" grade. It is not uncommon for proof platinum planchets (and especially those from the earlier years) to have pre-striking issues, such as minor pitting, very tiny pinpricks, minor metal flaking, etc. In some cases, these coins are graded PR70DCAM as it is determined that these pre-striking issues with the platinum planchet do not technically affect the grade of the post-struck coin. Collectors should carefully study these coins to fully grasp this issue.
I expect this series to gain popularity in the years ahead. These are some of the most beautiful modern coins ever struck by the U.S. Mint and the super low mintages should catch the attention of many collectors as the "word gets out"!