Coin Number 415

The Flat Rim design is believed to have been struck with a different collar which was just tight enough to stop any excess metal flow from between the planchet and the collar, which creates the wire rim at the extreme edge on most of the High Relief coins known. Recall that these magnificent coins were not just struck one time to bring up the three dimensional designs intended by August Saint-Gaudens, but were struck seven or eight times to fully complete the highest nuances within the dies. These would be Liberty’s forward knee and the upper edge of the eagle’s left wing as it crested in flight. It would be hard to imagine the anger of the Mint employees who had to endure the demands of this pet project of President Theodore Roosevelt, who demanded they strike these nearly impossible coins ”—even if it takes all day to strike one coin!”. Thankfully about 11,250 of these were struck before the technical sanity of the age halted their production, and the High Relief coins were retired from the production schedule. Charles Barber, the Mint Engraver, was tasked with reducing the depth of the double eagle and making a coin that could be struck normally on the presses with one blow.Nevertheless, these High Relief coins stand as a testament to the tenacity of President Roosevelt, and his determination to instill a new level of beauty and artistry to our coinage. In that he greatly succeeded. This is one of the nicer examples known today and flashes with brilliant yellow gold luster and pristine surfaces.