This extraordinary item is the 2009 $50 Ultra High Relief Gold American Eagle coin. This one-ounce,
24-karat gold coin is a triumph in coin design representing the culmination –
more than a century in the making – of a partnership between a renowned artist,
Augustus Saint-Gaudens, and a visionary leader, President Theodore Roosevelt.
The coin, is a digitally reproduced version of Saint-Gaudens’ original ultra
high relief 1907 Double Eagle gold piece, which was never released into
the coin’s obverse, Saint-Gaudens shows
personified by a statuesque woman striding powerfully forward. A young eagle
flying during a sunrise is depicted on the reverse. The original 1907 Double
Eagle is considered by many the most beautiful coin ever made in the
But despite Saint-Gaudens artistic masterpiece, the minting process at the time
did not allow for the mass production of ultra high relief coins. The Saint-Gaudens’ artistic vision was never fully realized.
In 2008, through 21st
century design and technology, the original Saint-Gaudens’ coin plasters were
digitally mapped and the ultra high relief sculpture was updated to reflect the
year 2009 in Roman numerals (MMIX), an additional four stars were added to
represent the last four states admitted to the Union and the inscription IN
GOD WE TRUST, which was not on the 1907 version, was added, along with a
small border to provide a more consistent edge. Featured on the raised
edge-lettering of the coin is the inscription E PLURIBUS UNUM with the
letters separated by stars.
2009 Ultra High Relief Double Eagle Gold Coin is packaged in an elegant
mahogany wood box with velvet lining. A wood platform encasing the coin capsule
allows the coin to be visible without tilting it. The box is finished with a
high-gloss lacquer and the inscriptions used are in a font similar to those
used in the early 1900s when the original coin was produced.
with each coin is an official United States Mint companion book that chronicles
the history and development of the 2009 Ultra High Relief Double Eagle Gold
Coin describing the modern technologies and processes used to perfect this
unique legal tender