BALTIMORE — The United States Mint chose the Nation’s largest coin show in Baltimore this summer to provide a “golden moment” for visitors by unveiling the much–anticipated 2009 Ultra High Relief Double Eagle Gold Coin, a modern version of what many call the most beautiful gold coin ever created: the 1907 Double Eagle. The exhibit at the United States Mint booth displays the development of this modern masterpiece, from its origin as gold bars through test strikes, to the finished, one–ounce 24–karat (.9999 pure) 2009 Ultra High Relief Double Eagle Gold Coin.
Six bars of refined gold stored at the United States Mint at West Point are featured as part of the exhibit as samples of gold used in making the coins. Each gold bar contains 400 ounces of gold and weighs 27.5 pounds.
United States Mint Director Ed Moy participated in the opening ceremony of the American Numismatic Association’s World’s Fair of Money® and then officially opened the United States Mint exhibit.
“Like most coin collectors, I love the Augustus Saint–Gaudens 1907 Double Eagle. It is everything that makes a coin produced in the United States great: truly American, capturing our national spirit, and a stunning work of art,” Moy told the crowd. “The United States Mint is proud to render Saint–Gaudens’ vision in a way that honors our past and raises the bar for the future. One hundred years from now, I believe the 2009 Ultra High Relief Double Eagle Gold Coin will be remembered as the birth of the greatest American century in coin–making history.”
Aided by advancements in 21st century technology, the United States Mint can now produce, in quantity, the ultra high relief coin envisioned, but never fully realized, by renowned sculptor Augustus Saint–Gaudens in 1907. The new collectible coin will be about 50 percent thicker than other United States Mint one–ounce gold coins to achieve the greater depth and relief to which Saint–Gaudens aspired. Visitors to the exhibit can touch and feel the ultra high relief on plasters of the coin.
Then, original Saint–Gaudens coin plasters were digitally mapped by the United States Mint. Through the digital design and die–making process, the Saint–Gaudens sculpture – in ultra high relief – was updated to reflect the year 2009, with an additional four stars to represent the current 50 states, and the inscription “In God We Trust,” which was not on the 1907 version.
Additionally, a small border was added for a more consistent edge. The 2009 coin will be made of 24–karat gold, rather than the original’s 22–karat grade. Pure 24–karat gold is more malleable than 22–karat, making it better material for striking the ultra high relief.
The 2009 Ultra High Relief Double Eagle Gold Coin exhibit will remain throughout the week at the United States Mint booth on the bourse floor at the World’s Fair of Money. The 2009 Ultra High Relief Double Eagle Gold Coin will be available for sale to the public in January 2009. There will be no mintage limit. The coins will only be issued in 2009.
The new 2009 Ultra High Relief Double Eagle Gold Coin will have the designation of a nominal face value of $20, but the actual sales price will depend on prevailing world gold prices.
Click here to download images of the 2009 Ultra High Relief Double Eagle Gold Coin.