The US Mint produced the $10 Indian Gold Eagles with years of interruption from 1907 to 1933. The coins were struck at the US Mint facilities in Philadelphia, San Francisco and Denver. They are composed of 90% gold and 10% copper with each coin containing 0.48375 oz of gold. Close to 15 million Indian Gold Eagles were minted. However, only a tiny amount were minted in proof condition at the Philadelphia facility. Coins from certain years of production and/or mint facilities are now very rare and therefore valuable.
Augustus Saint-Gaudens' design of the $10 Indian Gold Eagles depicts a leftward facing Lady Liberty wearing a Native American headdress on the obverse side. The word “LIBERTY” is inscribed on Lady Liberty's headband. Thirteen stars above the portrait are meant to represent the original states of the United States.
The reverse side of the $10 Indian Gold Eagles depicts an eagle standing on a bundle of arrows and an olive branch. “E PLURIBUS UNUM” is inscribed to the right of the eagle's head and “IN GOD WE TRUST” appears to the left of the eagle's breast (from 1908 on). The coin's denomination (“TEN DOLLARS”) and “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” is inscribed along the lower and upper edge of the coin. Indian Gold Eagles that were minted in San Francisco (mint mark: S) or Denver (mint mark: D) contain a mint mark next to the bundle of arrows. However, coins that were minted in Philadelphia don't have any mint mark.
A unique feature of $10 Indian Gold Eagles is the coin's edge which features either 46 or 48 raised stars (from 1912 on), representing the number of American states at that time.
|Gold Weight||Face Value||Diameter|
|0.48375 oz||10 Dollars||27 mm|
|Philadelphia||1907 - 1915, 1926, 1932 - 1933|
|San Francisco||1908 - 1916, 1920, 1930|
|Denver||1908 - 1911, 1914|
The $10 Indian Gold Eagles were commissioned by the American President Theodore Roosevelt in the early 1900's. The famous design was created by the US Mint sculptor Augustus Saint-Gaudens and production started in 1907. The first 2 years of production saw several variations in the design regarding the motto and the number of dots within and around the TEN DOLLARS denomination and E PLURIBUS UNUM. Regular continuous production of the $10 Indian Gold Eagles ceased in 1916. The coins were from then on only produced in certain years (in 1920, 1926, 1930, 1932 and 1933). Almost the entire mintage of 1933 was melted down into bullion (due to currency laws passed during the Great Depression), making the rare surviving specimens especially valuable.
The motto “IN GOD WE TRUST” was added to the reverse side of the coin in 1908. The $10 Indian Gold Eagle coins therefore exist with (1908 - 1933) and without motto (1907 - 1908). The picture of the coin on the left shows one of those early coins that don't contain the motto on their reverse side yet.
Even though production of the $10 Indian Gold Eagles lasted from 1907 to 1933, not all mint facilities produced them in every year and certain years saw no production at all.
Annual mintage of $10 Indian Eagles at the various US Mint branches varied between 30,100 coins (Denver 1911) and 4,463,000 coins (Philadelphia 1932). Proof coins were exclusively minted at the Philadelphia branch of the US Mint between 1908 and 1915 and proof mintage varied between 50 coins (1914) and 204 coins (1910).
Click here to see a table with detailed mintage numbers.
The coins that were minted in Philadelphia in 1907 include two varieties that are often referred to as "Wire Rim" and "Rounded Rim (or Rolled Rim)". The "Wire Rim" coins have a plain edge without the 46 raised stars on the rim and about 500 such pieces were minted. About 50 of the "Rounded Rim" coins still exist today. Besides the added rim (that was neccessary to make the coins more easily stackable), these coins can be distinguished by additional dots around E PLURIBUS UNUM and/or TEN DOLLARS. Whereas one sub-variety (the rarer variety) has dots around and within TEN DOLLARS and E PLURIBUS UNUM (*E* *PLURIBUS* *UNUM* and *TEN*DOLLARS*), the other common variety has only one dot between TEN and DOLLARS.
Especially hard to find are the coins that were minted in Philadelphia in 1907 (239.950 coins) and 1933 (most of the 312.500 coins were melted down and never left the mint) as well as the coins minted in San Francisco in 1920 (126.500 coins) and 1930 (96.000 coins).
Proof coins were only minted in Philadelphia and are even rarer to find if at all possible. Proofs were only minted in certain years and mintage numbers varied from a minimum of 50 to a maximum of 204 coins.