Double Eagle: The Epic Story of the World's Most Valuable Coin

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9780393059496: Double Eagle: The Epic Story of the World's Most Valuable Coin

"A thrilling page-turner....This is a great read."―Publishers Weekly, starred review

One coin, for years the only known 1933 twenty-dollar Double Eagle in the world, has inspired the passions of thieves and collectors, lawyers and charlatans. Its extraordinary story winds across seventy years and three continents, linking an almost unbelievable cast of characters: Theodore Roosevelt and a Philadelphia gold dealer with underworld connections; Egypt's King Farouk and an apple-cheeked Secret Service agent; London's most successful coin dealer and a retired trucker from Amarillo, Texas.

Alison Frankel's stylish narrative hums at the pace of a thriller. Her meticulously researched descriptions and vivid character studies bring the coin's history to life and illuminate the world of coin collecting, where the desire to possess often borders on madness. 8 pages of illustrations

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About the Author:

Alison Frankel is a senior writer at The American Lawyer. Her work has also appeared in Newsday, the New York Times, and several other national magazines. She lives in Sea Cliff, New York.

From Publishers Weekly:

Starred Review. Frankel, senior writer at the American Lawyer, has produced a thrilling page-turner about the most common of objects—a coin. Granted, the coin in question is no ordinary piece of change. Produced at the Philadelphia Mint in 1933, the $20 Double Eagle was the last gold coin made in the United States and never officially placed in circulation. Still, in the sometimes shadowy world of numismatics, one of the coins surfaced and was chased around the globe for nearly 70 years. In hard-driving prose, Frankel chronicles the events and characters that orbit this small piece of precious metal. Acquired by shady gold dealer Israel Switt, "a squat, balding redhead who wore thick-rimmed glasses, cheap suits, and a perpetual sneer," the coin found its way into the collection of King Farouk of Egypt, a ruler described by Frankel as having an appetite for collecting "so unquenchable and undiscriminating that he seemed almost cartoonish." Frankel demonstrates her journalistic skill with sparkling accounts of deals, investigations and the arcane rituals of the coin world. This is a great read for the obsessed collector and general public alike. 8 pages of b&w photos. (May)
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Alison Frankel
Published by W. W. Norton & Company (2006)
ISBN 10: 0393059499 ISBN 13: 9780393059496
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Frankel, Alison
Published by W. W. Norton & Company (2006)
ISBN 10: 0393059499 ISBN 13: 9780393059496
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