Numismatic Guaranty Corporation (NGC) has announced that they have certified a newly-discovered platinum eagle variety.
The latest oddity to surface in the U. S. Mint’s American Eagle Bullion Coin series is a 2007-W platinum $100 piece in proof with an obvious die-polishing error. This popular coin type, which features a facing eagle with wings outstretched, also includes a shield on the eagle’s breast. Draped over this shield is a banner inscribed with the W mintmark at left and the word FREEDOM at right.
On dies having a normal polishing pattern, this incuse word displays the same brilliant finish as the coin’s fields, thus standing out within the frosted banner. The newly-discovered variety has the word frosted so that it blends in with the rest of the design.
Presently unique, this curious coin has been certified by NGC as PF-70 Ultra Cameo, and it’s also identified on the label as FROSTED FREEDOM and DISCOVERY SPECIMEN.
The 2011 edition of R. S. Yeoman’s A Guide Book of United States Coins illustrates this coin type with a U. S. Mint-generated rendering that indeed shows the word FREEDOM frosted, as on this error coin, but that illustration is believed to be a conceptual drawing that predated actual production.
With evermore of the Mint’s die preparation becoming automated, it’s likely that this die simply missed the step which normally would have polished the incuse lettering to a mirror finish. Though the present coin is the first example found with a uniformly frosted finish to the banner, it’s likely that others must have been struck, and collectors are urged to examine their 2007-W proof platinum $100 coins for additional specimens.