The Arlington Collection Image Gallery

Complete Set of Gold $20 Type 1 Double Eagles

About the Coin

The 1851-O double eagle in The Arlington Collection is the only one graded AU58, with none finer, recovered from the SS Republic, making it the finest known from the shipwreck for this date and mint.

There were apparently eight examples recovered from the SS Central America shipwreck.

The 1851-O has the highest mintage of any New Orleans type 1 double eagle, but is basically a toss-up with the 1852-O as being the most common and readily available of the New Orleans issues. Of course, common being a relative term here considering the 1851-O and 1852-O are considerably more rare than their Philadelphia counterparts.

A second 1851-O from the shipwreck grading AU58 appeared for sale on a dealer website after I purchased this coin, calling into question the uniqueness of this coin. I have been assured this coin is unique and the finest known from the shipwreck. The NGC census for this coin backs this up. Apparently the coin on the dealer website was a mistake and was removed.

I am reminded of the old bait and switch tactics of the past, not that I am saying this wasn't an honest mistake. But, this does show that you really need to study and be an informed collector. This was a coin that was unique in its grade, so I immediately knew the offer could not be valid. So, be a student on whatever you collect and you can hopefully avoid the scam artists.

Designer: James B. Longacre
Weight: 33.436 grams
Diameter: approx. 34mm, reeded edge
Composition: 90% gold, 10% copper/silver

1851-O Gold $20 Double Eagle

Type 1 No Motto — S.S. Republic

SS Republic Population

Total Mintage: 315,000
Overall Rarity Ranking: 27 of 44 coins
Overall Population: approx. 1014 to 1264 coins

Finest recovered from the shipwreck

1851-O Gold $20 Double Eagle SS Republic Obverse
1851-O Gold $20 Double Eagle SS Republic Reverse

The Arlington Collection of Double Eagles