High relief coins have a design that projects outward from a flat surface. The designs are raised instead of being flat, making high relief coins more like sculptures than traditional coins. Coins minted for circulation need to have the ability to stack on top of each other. Conversely, high relief coins that are struck with no intention of ever being used in commerce can be more intricately designed.
President Roosevelt made it an initiative of his to beautify American coins. This beautification process began with the Saint-Gaudens Double Eagle. The idea was to have coins designed in high relief that rivaled the gold coins of the ancient Greeks. The Saint-Gaudens Double Eagle is still considered one of the most, if not the most beautiful coin in the history of American coinage.
Many things have changed since the days of the Saint-Gaudens Double Eagle including how the high-relief coins are minted. With new digital dies and high tech presses, coins can be minted with detail that was never before possible. The exquisite detail of the high relief coins make investing and collecting these coins more enjoyable than ever before.
Obverse: Features a bristlecone pine—among the oldest living organisms on Earth
Reverse: Depicts a young bald eagle standing on a rocky outcropping moments before it takes flight.
Proof 70 graded by NGC
The United States Mint American Liberty Gold Coin Program celebrates modern interpretations of the concept of American liberty, exploring the theme beyond the classical tradition of portraits of allegorical “Liberty.”
Since its establishment more than 230 years ago, the United States Mint has issued a vast array of coins with the concept of liberty personified by allegorical female figures. The 2023 American Liberty Gold Proof Coin, once again, offers a different interpretation—a bold representation of the perseverance of American liberty.
The obverse (heads) design features a bristlecone pine, a species native to California, Nevada, and Utah, thought to be the oldest living organisms on Earth, living up to 5,000 years. Bristlecone pines grow in places where other plants cannot and are often the species first to repopulate the land after cataclysmic changes, such as a lava run or glacial runoff. Inscriptions are "LIBERTY," "IN GOD WE TRUST," and "2023."
The reverse (tails) design depicts a young bald eagle standing on a rocky outcropping moments before it takes flight. Inscriptions are "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA," “1 OZ.," ".9999 FINE GOLD," "$100," and "E PLURIBUS UNUM."
The 2021 issue is the fifth gold-coin installment of the American Liberty program. Like all those that have come before it, it aims to represent the meaning that the idea of liberty holds for each of us, as individual Americans and as a collective nation. This year’s obverse design is a departure from depictions of Liberty that have graced the front side of these coins – and the majority of American coins, for that matter – to this point. The 2021 obverse motif does not represent a human manifestation of Lady Liberty at all. Instead, it features the image of a bucking mustang horse with a western-style saddle on its back – a far cry from the traditionally allegorical or even modern-day visuals that depict Liberty as a female figure. According to the Mint’s product description, the 2021 design is a “bold and breathtaking representation of the determination and power of the passion for American liberty.” It elaborates that the image of the horse bucking the saddle that is affixed to its back – and presumably, the rider who previously sat atop it – harkens to the American Revolution, during which our forefathers bucked “the yoke of the British rule” in their pursuit of liberty and self-governance. A beaming sun radiates behind the Mustang, while the word "LIBERTY," the coin's "2021" strike year, and the United States motto, “IN GOD WE TRUST,” line the top and bottom edges of the coin. The obverse image was designed by a member of the Mint's Artistic Infusion Program, Beth Zaiken, and sculpted by Medallic Artist Craig Campbell. The initials of both artists appear on the coin's obverse.
The reverse of the 2021 American Liberty High Relief Proof Gold coin features a striking close-up image of an American eagle that, coincidentally, is quite reminiscent of the image on the reverse of the 2021 Gold American Eagle Type 2 Proof that launched from the Mint earlier. The reverse motif of the gold 2021 American Liberty coin was designed by Richard Masters, a member of the Mint's Artistic Infusion Program. It was sculpted by Phebe Hemphill, another Mint Medallic Artist.
Masters’ American eagle is shown having an intense gaze and is depicted in intricate detail, making it a visually impactful image. The standard reverse inscriptions for this coin are also included: “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” on the outer bottom edge, the coin's "1 OZ." ".9999 FINE GOLD" precious metal contents and its "$100" face value. The motto found on the Great Seal of the United States, "E PLURIBUS UNUM," appears centered in the bottom portion of the coin's reverse, with the "W" mint mark, indicating production at New York's West Point Mint, just below. The initials of the image's designer appear at the throat of the mighty bird, while the sculptor's initials appear just below its beak.
The Mint imposed a 12,500-coin mintage limit on the 2021 American Liberty High Relief Proof Gold Coin, a 12,500 product limit, and a household order limit of 1.
The 2019 issue of the American Liberty gold coin lineup features a striking profile portrait of Lady Liberty with loose strands of hair flowing in the wind and 13 rays of sun “emanating” from her crown, which, as the Mint points out, symbolize “the free and creative spirit of America’s people.” Thirteen five-point stars line the left edge of the coin’s obverse, while the usual inscriptions of “LIBERTY” and “IN GOD WE TRUST” line the other edges. As with the program’s other gold coin issues to date, the 2019 coin features the strike year on its obverse, as well as the initials of the artists responsible for the design. Artistic Infusion Program member Richard Masters designed the obverse motif, and Mint Medallic Artist Joseph Menna sculpted it.
The "W" mint mark is shown on the obverse of the 2019 gold coin versus on its reverse, as in years past.
The eagle on the backside of the 2019 coin is shown in descending flight, wings outstretched to either side, and talons activated for landing. The bird fixes a piercing gaze on its viewers, adding to the life-like feel of the motif. The usual inscriptions appear on this coin’s reverse – “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,” the coin’s weight and gold contents, its “$100” face value, and “E PLURIBUS UNUM” – as well as the initials of Donna Weaver, Mint Artistic Infusion Program member, who designed the imagery, and Medallic Artist Michael Gaudioso, who sculpted it.
With its modern take on traditional American imagery and cutting-edge high relief production, the American Liberty Gold Coins and Silver Medals program offers releases of exciting and thoroughly unique precious metals pieces that investors can look forward to year after year!
The 2017 American Liberty 225th Anniversary Gold Coin commemorates the 225th anniversary of the United States Mint with a progressive depiction of Lady Liberty.
Lady Liberty has graced American coins for the entire 225 year existence of the United States Mint. The newest Lady Liberty is a modern interpretation of the symbolic figure that has been used to exemplify the ideals bestowed in the United States Constitution.
These beautiful proof coins feature raised edge lettering and are minted using .9999 24 karat gold in high relief.
Lady Liberty is featured on the obverse of the coin wearing a crown of stars. Also included on the obverse of the coin is the inscriptions "LIBERTY," "IN GOD WE TRUST," and the dates "1792" and "2017." The reverse includes a majestic eagle in flight with "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" and "E PLURIBUS UNUM" along with the coins weight, fineness, and face value.
The 2015 American Liberty High Relief Gold Coin features the latest and greatest in digital technology from the U.S. Mint. The $100 face value matches the 1oz Platinum American Eagle and represents the highest denomination ever issued on a gold coin in the United States!
The U.S. Mint fulfilled renowned sculptor Augustus Saint-Gaudens’ original vision of an ultra high relief double eagle gold coin with the release of the 2009 Ultra High Relief Double Eagle Gold Coin, closing one era of classic American coin design and ushering in a new one.
The High Relief effect is achieved by using a thicker coin and a smaller diameter, allowing for the background of the coin to be concave and giving the portraits and features a raised, more realistic design.
United States Mint Artistic Infusion Program artist Justin Kunz created a stunning new interpretation of Lady Liberty gracing the $100 Liberty 24-karat gold coin, along with a contemporary design depicting an American eagle rising in flight, gripping a branch in its talons as an embodiment of freedom.
Containing one troy ounce of .9999 fine 24-karat gold, these lustrous high relief coins are among the world's purest gold coins making them a treasured addition to any collection or investment portfolio.
The U.S. Mint announced the plan for the Ultra High Relief in March 2008 and it immediately raised high interest in the gold investment community. The coin was released for public sale the following year and it quickly sold out at the Mint, as investors acquired every coin they could get their hands on. In the following years, demand for the coin has steadily increased, but the supply stays the same, which has driven a consistent increase in the price, making early buyers very happy in the process. Even with the sharp increase in value, there are very few of these coins available in perfect "Mint State 70" condition on the market. All 2009 Ultra High Relief coins are certified in perfect condition and are sealed in a tamper-proof holder to guarantee and preserve the condition.
The coin pays homage to famed mint engraver Augustus Saint Gaudens, who created the legendary Liberty Head Double Eagle, including the 1907 High Relief Double Eagle. The first 2009 Ultra High Relief coin that was made was sent immediately for safekeeping at the Smithsonian Museum. The second coin was preserved by the U.S. Mint to add to its heritage collection.
The special one-year issue coins are struck in solid 24-karat gold on 27 millimeter blanks that are 4 millimeters thick. The Ultra-High Relief coins contain one full ounce of .9999 fine gold and required two strikings of the coin press at a pressure of 65 metric tons to fully bring up the high-relief detail.
Certified coins in perfect MS70 or PF70 condition are considered actual "museum-quality." With their flawless finish, perfect condition and rarity, they are preferred by both collectors and investors. Since they are true collectibles, they are not as subject to the ups and downs of the commodities market, which has made their value more stable over time than gold bullion alone. The U.S. Gold Bureau recommends these coins as a long-term store of value, to help protect your portfolio from turbulent economic times.