1926-S GOLD $20 ST. GAUDENS
NGC MS65+Legendary for its beauty and always popular with collectors and investors alike, as a cornerstone coin in any numismatic collection. This issue is highly cherished by collectors and investors and is one of the favorites in all American numismatics. Widely known as ''The Most Beautiful Coin in the World.''
The year 1907 was a monumental year for gold coinage with the release of an entirely new coinage design, the $20 Saint Gaudens double eagle. President Theodore Roosevelt wanted our coinage to reflect our Nation's pre-eminent status. He felt our coins at that time had become very bland, and in his words were ''artistically of atrocious hideousness.'' The decision was made to launch new designs for the panorama of U.S. coins. Roosevelt hired the famous artist, Augustus Saint-Gaudens to create ''The Most Beautiful Coin in the World,'' and he removed the Motto, ''In God We Trust'' because he felt it to be irreverent of God's name, and putting it on coins would cheapen the sacred motto. There was a great public outcry about the omission of the motto on the new coin design. God-fearing members of Congress were ''outraged and furious'' and ordered the motto to appear. Upon the Congressional mandate, the addition of the motto was made on later issues near the end of 1908. After 1908, the motto appeared above the sun on the reverse of the coin.
The obverse of the coin, features Liberty striding toward us in the dawn, holding the torch of freedom, and the olive branch of peace, backed by the rays of the sun, with the U.S. Capitol visible and stars circling design. On the reverse, the American eagle is soaring above the sun with its wings spread in majestic flight, backed by rays from the sun, with the motto ''IN GOD WE TRUST'' starting mid-1908.
When Roosevelt first viewed Saint-Gaudens' Double Eagle design, he knew that the artist had created a coin that would be admired for the ages. What he did not know, however, was that a quarter-century later in 1933 during the height of the Great Depression, his cousin, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, would confiscate all privately-owned gold and most of these beautiful works of art would be melted into lifeless bars in 1933.