The $2 1/2 Liberty gold coin can be looked at as the workhorse of early American gold coinage. This denomination was minted most years for circulation from the late 1700's to 1907. Along the way there were several design changes as well as a few artist's hands involved in the evolution to what became the final design, which saw production from 1840 to 1907. This design, by Christian Gobrecht is the most common found today.
The value of of $2 1/2 or 250 cents, held a sizable amount of purchasing power for day-to-day needs and financial transactions, and both bankers and common townfolk often preferred a single small gold coin to carrying larger U.S. Silver Dollars or the necessary combination of smaller silver coins to amass 250 cents. For this reason among others finding a "Mint State" or uncirculated $2 1/2 Liberty is not common, and even common date coins of this denomination carry a significant premium over the value of the gold contained in the coin, especially relative to small modern gold bullion coins.