1872 Amazonian Gold Set

The pieces shown below represent the only uniform design ever made for our gold coinage. Designed by William Barber, they are known today as the Amazonian design because they share a common reverse theme with a set of silver coinage also made by William Barber.

Although they seem identical, each obverse has a slightly different arrangement of the hair. This was probably done to handle the different size of each denomination.

Only a single set was made in gold and is displayed below. The gold set was originally intact through the collections of William Woodin, H.O. Granberg, Waldo Newcomer and Col Green. After this, the set got broken up with the dollar going to Fred C.C. Boyd and to Dr. Judd and the others going to King Farouk and Dr. John E. Wilkison. The dollar was finally rejoined with the rest of the set in 1962 when Dr. Wilkison traded for Dr. Judd's gold patterns which were then in possession of Abe Kosoff. They have been together ever since, being offered in the 1981 and 1983 ANA sales and were sold in the Trompeter sale at auction and, in January 2004, were sold privately into a Southern gentleman's collection and as of November 2007 are now a highlight of the Simpson collection.

It is likely that Woodin got the gold set from A.L. Snowden for "returning" the 2 gold half unions to him which were then placed back in the Mint cabinet. For more on that, click here.

About a dozen sets were struck in copper, with original sets existing in the Smithsonian and Durham Museum and an assembled gilt set in the Harry W Bass Research Foundation and probably 3 sets in aluminum, one of which was owned by Virgil Brand from Nagy on 5/11/1907 (journal #38175-80) and another displayed by Woodin in the 1914 ANS exhibit. The Pittman aluminum set was assembled. The Simpson collection contains complete gold, copper, copper-gilt and aluminum sets, the latter 3 assembled.

Gold Dollar J1224/P1366

Quarter Eagle J1230/P1372

Three Dollar - This is the only pattern design ever made of this denomination. J1235/P1377

Five Dollar J1240/P1382

Ten Dollar J1245/P1387

Twenty Dollar J1250/P1392

Photos courtesy of Heritage.