The Arlington Collection Image Gallery

Selected Favorite Coins from A.C. Dwyer's Type Collection

About the Coin

The 1856-O $20 gold double eagle is listed in the book 100 Greatest U.S. Coins by Jeff Garrett and Ron Guth.

The Type 1 double eagle was struck from 1850 through 1866 at which time the reverse was changed to include the motto "In God We Trust."

The Type 1 double eagle spanned some of the most memorable years in our nation's history. It owes its existence to the California Gold Rush and it came to an end due to rising religious sentiment during the Civil War leading to the adding of the motto on the reverse.

The 1856-O Type 1 double eagle has the lowest mintage in the series with only 2,250 having been struck. The 1856-O, along with the 1854-O, are the two major rarities of the series. This coin was the final hole that was filled to complete The Arlington Collection of Type 1 Double Eagles. Only 20-25 examples of this coin are believed to exist today.

The 1856-O is the only date and mint mark that not even a single Type 1 double eagle was recovered from the S.S. Republic. (Actually the 1866-S was another but since the ship sank in 1865 it doesn't really count.)

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

1856-O Gold $20 Double Eagle

Type 1 No Motto — Major Key Date
Condition Census

1856-O Gold $20 Double Eagle Obverse
1856-O Gold $20 Double Eagle Reverse

The Arlington Collection of U.S. Type Coins