1853 $10 U.S. Assay Office of Gold, 900 Thous. PCGS XF45. K-16, Low R.6. Ex. S.S. Central America #7109. Gold Foil. This is a scarce and seldom-encountered variety that appeals to a wide range of collectors. In fact, only 9 examples were recovered from the shipwreck of the S.S. Central America! Not only will the territorial gold specialist want to own this example, but the collector of Federal gold eagles will also want to add this coin to an advanced cabinet. Issued under authority of the United States Assay Office, this is an official issue of the United States Government. Apparently this variety was struck at the end of March 1853, or during the early days of April in that year. Our friend and noted author Don Kagin noted: “Struck between 3/53 and 4/53” in his reference on the territorial gold coinage. The 1853-dated ten dollar 900 thous. denomination is definitely more scarce but usually encountered in better condition than the 1852-dated issues, with the exception of the 1852/1 overdate variety.
This specimen spent approximately 130 years in an underwater tomb before being discovered and brought to the surface by the Odyssey Marine Group. It is an attractive example with sharp design features consistent with the assigned PCGS grade. Considering it’s history, it has excellent surfaces, and is an attractive honey-yellow, rather than the green-gold coloration those remaining non-shipwreck US Assay coins often take on.