David Akers (1975/88): Overall, the 1915-S is a bit more rare than the 1910 through 1914 San Francisco mint issues (except, of course, the 1913-S) but there seems to be a few more high quality (MS-64 or better) examples of the 1915-S around than there are of the 1910-S, 1912-S, 1914-S and even the 1909-S. The 1915-S is definitely rare in every Mint State grade, and even at the MS-63 level relatively few examples are ever seen. In MS-64 and MS-65, this issue is very rare and seldom available. The Kruthoffer specimen was the best, or at least the prettiest, I have seen and it realized $29,000 in 1981. It is now owned by Dr. Philip Weinstein. A coin I purchased across the counter in 1973 when I worked at Paramount was also virtually perfect and is now in a prominent Midwest collection. A Dale Williams Galleries sale of a few years ago had a sensational MS-65+ example that is now owned by a prominent Eastern collector; Dr. Steven Duckor and Ed Trompeter also have full MS-65 coins, and I have seen a small number of others such as the 1975 Central States Sale specimen.
The 1915-S is almost always very sharply struck and most specimens have excellent lustre. Quite often the obverse has the broad rim and partial wire edge seen on other San Francisco mint eagles from 1911 through 1916. The surfaces are fully frosty and display little or no granularity. The color is invariably excellent on this issue, typically light to medium orange, often highlighted with greenish gold. Some light to medium coppery gold specimens are also known.
Jim O'Neal Collection of Saint-Gaudens Eagles - Heritage 1/2009:3525, $126,500 - Simpson Collection
Bentley Shores Collection - Stack’s/Bowers 8/2013:4562, $99,875