Estimated grade. HOLEY “DIME REVERSE” GOLD DOLLAR OBVERSE/BLANK DENTICLED REVERSE. Obverse is a perforated regular Liberty Seated dime reverse. The reverse is blank with denticles. Gold, RE, R-7, 25.8 grains.
David Akers (1975/88): Description: Obverse. Large perforation with UNITED STATES OF AMERICA near the border. A portion of the wreath from the reverse dime die used to strike this obverse shows around the perforation. Reverse. Blank except for the denticles at the border.
Comments: Undated, but undoubtedly struck in January, 1852. (See comments for J-135.) The perforation on this pattern is much larger than on the other ring gold dollars and the diameter is correspondingly larger as well. In fact, the diameter of J-136 is precisely the same as that of a quarter eagle.
As I mentioned when commenting on J-135, it is obvious that this design was never intended to be used for regular coinage. The dime reverse die was used to strike this pattern merely because there was insufficient time to prepare appropriate dies. (Dies were prepared later in the year, of course, to strike J-137, J-141, and J-145, the ring gold dollars that follow.)
This pattern is the second rarest of the ring gold dollars with only four or possibly five specimens known.
Judd 136 is one of the "ring" or "annular" dollars that were made hastily in 1852 to demonstrate a possible alternative to the small gold dollar introduced in 1849 for regular circulation. For Judd 136, mint employees took a regular Dime reverse and combined it with a blank obverse. The hole in the center kept the weight and the thickness of the coin at the proper levels in spite of the larger diameter. The use of the Dime reverse eliminated the need for new pattern dies to be created, which was all well and good since the concept was never adopted.
At least four J-136s are known, including one in the Smithsonian Institution, two from the 1979 ANS sale, and one from the Judd-Wilkison collections.
DeWitt Smith Collection - Virgil Brand Collection (#46971) - Horace Brand - F.C.C. Boyd Collection - Dr. J. Hewitt Judd Collection - Wilkison Collection - Paramount - LRIS Collection - Superior 1/2008:658, $40,250