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The $10 Indian Head Gold Eagle Coin: Designed by Augustus Saint-Gaudens, a True Beauty

The $10 Indian Head Gold Eagle coin designed by Augustus Saint-Gaudens is among the most beautiful gold coins this nation has ever struck. Minted between 1908 to 16 and again in 1929, United Coin & Precious Metals loves it when customers inquire about buying one of these coins. We love to recount their history, plus they’re such beauties to behold.

About the Designer

Born in Dublin, Ireland in 1848, Augustus Saint-Gaudens was a 19th century American sculptor raised in New York City. He is well-known for his monuments commemorating heroes of the American Civil War, many of which still stand, as well as his numismatic designs. He designed the $20 Saint Gaudens Double Eagle gold piece, considered one of the most beautiful American coins ever issued, as well as the $10 “Indian Head” gold eagle.

Saint-Gaudens work on the coins was at the behest of then-President Theodore Roosevelt who in 1904 complained to Secretary of the Treasury that U.S. coins “lacked artistic merit.” Roosevelt suggested a private artist like Saint-Gaudens should be enlisted to help – and he was. Sadly, Saint-Gaudens was suffering from cancer when he worked on the designs and did not survive to see the coins released.

About this Coin

The $10 Indian Head’s obverse (front) features Lady Liberty’s head. She dons an Indian war bonnet that reads “LIBERTY” and 13 stars, representing the nation’s 13 original colonies, arc above her head. The date appears at the bottom of the coin.

The reverse side shows a proud American bald eagle with its chest puffed out. It stands among olive branches with the Latin phrase “E PLURIBUS UNUM” to the right. The words “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” and the denomination (“TEN DOLLARS”) appear at the top and bottom of the coin. Not part of the original design, the motto “IN GOD WE TRUST” was added to the coin in the middle of 1908 by order of Congress.

Instead of a lettered edge, the coin’s edge shows raised stars, representing the states of the Union. Coins struck from 1907 to 1911 feature 46 stars. Two more stars were added the following year to commemorate the addition of New Mexico and Arizona to the Union.

Originally, the $10 Indian was struck with a wire rim in 1907. This gave the coin more of a 3-D appearance. Some 500 of these were produced before the U.S. Mint began producing regular strikes later that same year.

With a diameter of 21.6mm, the coin weighs 8.359g and contains .24187 oz of gold.

Browse Our Collections or Call

Our inventory contains some of the most desired rare coins and collectibles, including the $10 Indian Head Gold Eagle Coin. While UCPM does its best to keep most popular bullion items in stock, we cannot possibly stock everything or control product shortages. Should you be looking for something we don’t have available, chances are we can find it for you.

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