1908-D $20 No Motto MS65+ Certification #06666145, PCGS #9143
David Akers (1975/88)A few years ago, a moderate sized hoard of this issue was uncovered (along with many thousands of other Mint State double eagles) in Central America. I do not know the exact quantity but it was probably several hundred pieces. Most were in the MS-60 to MS-63 range but some were in the MS-64 category. Of the many pieces I saw from the group, none could be called a full MS-65, although several were close, but it is possible that there were a few true gems in the hoard. Prior to the discovery of this hoard, choice Mint State or better examples of this issue were almost impossible to find. Even now, a true gem must be considered a major rarity, among the rarest in the entire series. The Browning Collection specimen is a full gem, as is one owned by a prominent Eastern collector, but I don't recall ever seeing one nicer than MS-65+. This issue is still underrated, but now only at the highest grade levels, thanks to the hoard.
The 1908-D No Motto is typically well struck, although the obverse is rather "flat" due to poor die detail. Lustre is nearly always very good and the surfaces are generally quite satiny although many fully frosty specimens also exist. Color is almost always a light to medium greenish and coppery gold.
Augustus Saint Gaudens
90% Gold, 10% Copper
The United States of America