Type 3, Large Head Indian Princess Gold Dollar Type 3, Large Head Indian Princess Gold Dollar

Type 3, Large Head Indian Princess Gold Dollar

Designed by: James Barton Longacre
Issue Dates: 1856-1889
Composition: 90% gold, 10% copper
Diameter: 15 mm
Weight: 1.67 grams (25.77 grains)
Edge: Reeded
Business Strike Mintage: 5,327,363
Proof Mintage: 8,700 (estimated)

In 1856 James B. Longacre redesigned the gold dollar in an effort to create a motif that would strike up sharply and properly. The Indian princess style of Miss Liberty was continued, but in the new version the relief is lower and the details are different. Changes were also made in the reverse wreath. The result was a coin which indeed could be struck properly, with the result that gold dollars of the Type III design usually are well struck in most areas, including the central two digits of the date (the area which caused a problem on the preceding type).
The Type III or Large Head motif was produced continuously from 1856 through 1889, although during and after the Civil War, mintages were exceedingly low for all years except a few. The nadir was touched in 1875 when just 400 business strikes and 20 Proofs were struck. Gold dollars were not popular with the public after the Civil War, and eventually the denomination was discontinued in 1889.

The type set collector can easily locate examples of the more plentiful dates in desired grades from Very Fine to AU. Uncirculated pieces are scarce, and superb Uncirculated are scarcer yet, although a flurry of investment and speculative activity which occurred among jewelers and numismatists during the 1879-1889 years resulted in the survival of more Uncirculated specimens of these dates than would otherwise have been the case. Proofs were minted of various Philadelphia Mint dates, with those struck from 1884 through 1889 being produced in relatively large quantities. Examples are fairly scarce today, however.

Circulation Strike
Circulation Strike
Circulation Strike
Proof Strike
Proof Strike
Proof Strike

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