This has to be one of the most unique and interesting proof sets that I have ever seen. It is a complete 16 piece proof set that was made in 1868 but all the coins are made out of aluminum instead of their normal compositions of gold, silver and copper. Although aluminum is now a common metal that is used in everything from soda cans to gutters on your house, it used to be semi-scare back in the 1800s.
According to the auction listing, "The experimental 1868 aluminum proof sets were produced at the request of Mint Director Henry Linderman, ostensibly for presentation to the Bank of England and other European entities, to demonstrate the advantages of aluminum as a coinage metal. However, it now seems more likely that the sets were actually intended as numismatic delicacies for sale or presentation to favored collectors and influential parties in this country." Regardless of why this set was produced, you should check out the high quality pictures of this stunning proof set by viewing the auction listing in the link below.
- Heritage Auction Listing: 1868 Complete 16-Piece Aluminum Pattern Proof Set
Image Courtesy of: Heritage Auction Galleries, Ha.com