1915-S Panama-Pacific Exposition $50. Round. MS-64 (PCGS).
The Round and Octagonal variants of the Panama-Pacific $50 gold issue are the largest and most highly coveted coins in the classic U.S. Commemorative series. Both types were produced to the extent of 1,500 pieces, but the high (by early 20th century standards!) asking price of $100/coin proved too much for most attendees at the Panama-Pacific International Exposition, even though this cost also entitled the buyer to an example of the Pan-Pac Half Dollar, Gold Dollar and Quarter Eagle. Accordingly, relatively few coins sold either at the exposition or after, when Farran Zerbe continued to offer them for sale until November 1, 1916.Fewer examples of the Round Pan-Pac Fifty were sold than of its Octagonal counterpart, the curious shape of the latter explaining its greater appeal among contemporary Americans. Accordingly, the net mintage (after melting of unsold examples) for the Round is merely 483 coins, compared to 645 pieces for the Octagonal.This is a very nice MS-64 that is just shy of full Gem status. Both sides present equally well with satiny mint bloom and soft, even, orange-gold color. The strike is also universally bold throughout. Defining the grade are just a few typical hairlines over and before Athena's cheek on the obverse and a thin, faint graze in the lower-left obverse field. Sure to sell for a strong bid.