David Akers (1975/88): The 1879-S is more rare than the 1877-S or 1878-S and it is also rarer than the 1874-S, 1875-S and 1876-S. Although it is generally regarded as a common date, the auction data correctly show that the 1879-S is really not common at all, particularly in high grade. In low circulated grades, i.e. VF or EF, the 1879-S is only moderately scarce and it can usually be located without much difficulty. However, in AU the 1879-S is scarce and in average uncirculated condition it is very scarce. Choice and gem mint state examples are known but are rare, especially gems which are virtually impossible to obtain.
The Saddle Ridge Hoard of gold coins, discovered in northern California in 2013, contained forty-three 1879-S Double Eagles. Two were ungradeable, four were Mint State, and one was tied for Second Finest known.
Coinhunter 1/2007:309 - Heritage 9/28/2007:3851, not sold
Saddle Ridge Hoard