Sign In or Create Account

Knowledge Center

$10 Gold Liberty Head – No Motto – 1838 – 1866

Learn About the 1838-1866 $10 Gold Liberty Head – No Motto

Between the last of the Heraldic Eagles in 1804 (which were actually minted in 1834) until 1838, no new $10.00 Gold Eagle coins were struck. Eagles, when infrequently available, were often melted as there was a premium on their size and weight. But a gold coin shortage in the United States received some relief with the discovery of gold in both the Carolinas and Georgia. Now, the demand for gold was strong so the government opened mints in Charlotte (NC), Dahlonega (GA) and in New Orleans, as it was the second most important port in the United States.

As the price of gold continued to rise and hoarding was rampant, the size and weight of the $10 Gold eagle were reduced. Second Chief Engraver Christian Gobrecht, who did most of the designing while the Chief Engraver, William Kneass, was suffering a stroke, designed the new eagle that would be struck in 1838.

Gobrecht’s design depicted a bust of Miss Liberty, with her hair pulled back, wearing a crown with the word “LIBERTY” inscribed on it. Miss Liberty faced left and 13 six-pointed stars encircled her with the date directly beneath her bust. The reverse featured an eagle with wings outstretched and pointed upwards, holding three arrows in one talon and an olive branch in the other. Around the eagle was “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” with the denomination “TEN D.” directly below the eagle.

(1838 Liberty Head Eagle – Gobrecht’s New Design – Obverse [left] – Reverse [right].)

In 1838, the initial year, only 7,200 coins were struck. In 1839, 25,801 coins were struck, all with Large Letters. There was also an unknown tiny quantity of a proof version, with Large Letters and an overdate of 1839 9/8. The known coin is extremely rare.

Beginning in 1841, coins were struck at the New Orleans Mint, bearing the famed “O” mintmark. In 1855, coins from the San Francisco mint, bearing an “S” were struck as well. The last New Orleans coin of this type was struck in 1860, as the mint was occupied by the State of Louisiana and then the Confederacy after the attack on Fort Sumter in 1861. The design was struck throughout 1865, and in 1866 in San Francisco until legislation created the “Motto” variety 1866. A resurgence of religious fervor swept the country during the Civil War and our coinage was not immune to representing the current passion of the day.

DateTypeMintageFine ValueUnc Value
1838$10 Eagle, No Motto7,200$3,500$100,000
1839 Lg Let$10 Eagle, No Motto25,801$1,500$40,000
1839 Lg Ltrs, 9/8$10 Eagle, No MottoUnique$500,000$1,600,000
1839 Sm Ltrs$10 Eagle, No Motto12,447$3,500$50,000
1840 to 1866$10 Eagle, No Motto862,258 to 18,000$1,250$22,000
1841-O$10 Eagle, No Motto2,500$7,000$90,000
1844$10 Eagle, No Motto6,361$2,500$40,000
1855-S$10 Eagle, No Motto9,000$3,000$35,000
1857-O$10 Eagle, No Motto5,500$3,000$30,000
1858$10 Eagle, No Motto2,521$6,000$50,000
1859-O$10 Eagle, No Motto2,300$7,000$70,000
1859-S$10 Eagle, No Motto7,000$4,000$70,000
1860-S$10 Eagle, No Motto5,000$5,000$80,000
1861-S$10 Eagle, No Motto15,500$5,000$75,000
1862-S$10 Eagle, No Motto12,500$3,000$125,000
1863$10 Eagle, No Motto1,218$14,000$150,000
1864$10 Eagle, No Motto3,530$7,000$90,000
1864-S$10 Eagle, No Motto2,500$50,000$300,000
1865$10 Eagle, No Motto3,980$7,000$60,000
1865-S$10 Eagle, No Motto16,700$7,000$60,000
1866-S$10 Eagle, No Motto8,500$6,000$90,000

Expand your collection today and shop our assortment of $10 Gold Liberty Eagle Coins (1838-1907)

Explore More On APMEX



Rare Coins