But since I write this newsletter from the point of view of collectors in this great hobby, I wanted to share with you an entirely different perspective on this same show.
A good friend and customer told me on Saturday: “From my point of view, this show was fantastic! I added some great coins to my collection. And the time I spent here was very enjoyable. Some of the biggest, most important dealers at the show (obviously he was not referring to me), who normally are much too busy to talk, suddenly had time on their hands. I could spend 5 minutes talking with them, and they were glad to do it. So for me – this was the best, most enjoyable show I’ve attended in quite a while”.
So the take away from this could well be: if dealers like me are complaining, there is a good chance that you – the collector – are going to have a very enjoyable experience.
This Here is Lesson Learnin' "Territory", Pardner
OK students. Today’s class involves what we can all learn from the results of the spectacular territorial gold collection sold at the CSNS auction. Because unlike the sleepy bourse floor, the sale of this collection was truly a blockbuster event.
This collection consisted of less than 100 coins sold. Those few coins sold for over ten million dollars in total, setting numerous records in the process. Bidding on the floor, the phones and the Internet could fairly be characterized as furious.
Though not his primary goal by any stretch of the imagination, the person who assembled this magnificent collection made millions of dollars in profit. And that is on top of the enjoyment he undoubtedly received from building the collection. What can we learn from this experience? Here are my take-aways:
- The collector held this collection for what passes today for a very long time. His average holding period was 12 years or a little longer.
- He worked with an expert dealer to help him find just the right coins, and to help him build it.
- He paid strong prices (at the time) for rare, desirable coins in high grades.
- Most importantly: he studied the area thoroughly, and knew exactly what he was buying. When an opportunity to acquire a rare coin that didn’t show up frequently arose – or when a coin in uncommonly nice condition showed up - he stepped up and bought it. Lots of times the trick in building a great collection is discerning when a once-in-a-generation opportunity is occurring, and when it is not.
Announcement Regarding Auction Representation at the Newman Sale of Colonials in New York
Due to the number of requests from long-time customers I have received in recent weeks, I have decided to relax my longstanding policy against representing folks at auction. Under certain limited circumstances and under certain conditions, I will represent serious collectors at this once-in-a-lifetime sale of Eric Newman's colonial coins. Contact me for details, terms, conditions, etc. Your mileage may vary; void where prohibited.
A Super-Secret Peek at the New Coins I will Have at the EAC Convention in Colorado Springs Later This Week
OK, I guess it isn't super-secret any longer if I am listing them in my newsletter. But still – in addition to my regular inventory (all of which is a maximum of maybe 8 weeks old, by definition) I will have these super-new newps at my table at the EAC show later this week. Email me at email@example.com for details on any coins listed below. All of these coins have been graded by the nice folks at PCGS:
- 1793 Chain Cent in Very Fine
- 1798 Large Cent in Choice Extremely Fine
- 1798 Large Cent in Very Fine
- 1799 Large Cent in Good, with an Even Brown Color & a Bold Date
- 1858/7 Flying Eagle Cent in Choice Almost Uncirculated
- 1902 Indian Cent in Gem Uncirculated with Full Red
- 1955 Lincoln Cent, Doubled Die Obverse in Choice Red & Brown Uncirculated
- 1918/7-S Standing Liberty Quarter in Very Fine
- 1817 Rarity 6 Bust Half Dollar in Choice Almost Uncirculated
- 1826 Bust half Dollar in Choice Almost Uncirculated
- 1839-O Reeded Edge Half Dollar in Choice Very Fine
- 1923-D St. Gaudens $20 Gold in Gem Uncirculated
Now On to the NEWP's
As in my previous newsletters – these coins are the items that I have gathered up over the last two or three weeks.
The plan is to upload all these coins to my website. In the meantime, readers of this newsletter will be the very first to eyeball these offerings.
The “Making the Grade” Featured Coin:
In each newsletter I pick out one coin to highlight. It doesn't have to be expensive; it just has to be interesting.
This week's coin is one that can truly be termed a Mega-Coin (which is a term I just made up). Only two are known, and the coin is of interest to both Bust Half Dollar specialists and to Seated coinage specialists.
1838 Half Dollar Pattern, with the Reeded Edge Bust Half Dollar Reverse. Judd-82. Original. PCGS PR62.
A Rarity-8 pattern with a bust half dollar proof reverse? Oy! This is an exciting coin, and a true transitional pattern. The mint was finding its way away from the Capped Bust design in use since 1807 in one form or another towards Christian Gobrecht's more “modern” Seated Liberty design. This very pattern is the missing link between the two. Only two people in the world can own a Judd-82. The other specimen (a PCGS Proof-63) is locked up in a world renowned pattern collection. That leaves … well, you know. A great combo – the bust half reverse of 1836-1837 and the new Seated style obverse. TrueView Images below. $36,500.
There are some interesting and beautiful new purchases (“newps”) in this issue. Lots of key date large cents, plus More of those spectacular Commems from that high end collection, plus some contemporary counterfeits and a few other goodies.
If you are attending the Early American Coppers Coin Show in Colorado Springs, CO this week, these coins will also be on display at my table.
1823/2 Matron Head Large Cent. PCGS Graded Very Fine-25 CAC.
This is perhaps my favorite coin on this list. Why, you ask? Good question! You see, when I was a lad of maybe 12 years of age, I collected Matron Head large cents The 1823 was the key date, both then and now. Prices were lower then, but my earning power was even lower than that. My dream was to fill that persistent hole in my collection. So I saved, and I saved, and I saved some more. Finally I had enough to buy one. We happened to be vacationing in Chicago (“vacationing” in this instance meant visiting relatives, most of whose apartments smelled vaguely of mothballs, as I recall. And the clear plastic covers kept stains off of all of their upholstered furniture, but it made a crunching sound every time you sat down on it). My dad was kind enough to spend an afternoon taking me around to various coin shops – likely to escape the aforementioned relatives, now that I think back on it -- and there I found it: an 1823/2 large cent. I had saved enough money, and I eagerly bought it. I cherished that coin for a long time. Years later that I discovered that it was actually an altered date, and not a true 1823/2 cent at all. This was before the days of slabbed coins, of course, so I had no recourse. But I still fondly remember the quest for that coin. Anyway… on to THIS coin. Choice, medium brown, and attractive. I just wish I had stumbled onto this coin back when I was 12. $1985.
1839/6 Large Cent. PCGS Graded VF-30.
N-1, rarity 3. Another really tough hole to fill in a set of early cents. Often when you manage to find a higher grade coin such as this, the color is funky and mottled. That is not the case here. The coin is an even milk chocolate brown, and free of any funkiness. Perhaps members of the rock band Parliament Funkadelic wouldn't like this coin, but you definitely will. $4350.
1939 Arkansas Commemorative Half Dollar. PCGS Graded MS65.
A brilliant gold & green ring around choice surfaces. A coin from the old time, high end collection that I began featuring in my newsletter issue #5. $975.
1936-D Cincinnati Commemorative Half Dollar. PCGS Graded MS66 [OGH].
A gorgeous coin, with surfaces as mark free as these ever come. A coin from the old time, high end collection that I began featuring in my newsletter issue #5. $2700.
1936-S Cincinnati Commemorative Half Dollar. PCGS Graded MS66.
Near white, with just a touch of golden green toning. $2250.
1936 Connecticut Commemorative Half Dollar. PCGS Graded MS65.
Burnt gold toning at the rims quickly fades to golden white centers. $850.
1935 Hudson Commemorative Half Dollar. PCGS Graded MS66.
Light golden rim toning fades to near white centers. Remarkably free of any disturbances, which is unusual for this issue. $3250.
1924 Huguenot Half Dollar. PCGS MS67.
Absolutely booming cartwheel luster and just a hint of gold toning at the rims. Again, a really tough issue in top grade. $6250.
1936 Gettysburg Commemorative Half Dollar. PCGS Graded MS65.
A very popular issue. This one has gorgeous green-gold-russet obverse rim toning while the reverse has variegated deep russet color. $1175.
1937 Lynchburg Commemorative Half Dollar. PCGS Graded MS67.
Opalescent golden green coloration over flawless surfaces. $5250.
1938 New Rochelle Commemorative Half Dollar. PCGS Graded MS67.
Burnt orange-yellow-green rim toning fades to near white centers. Another stunner from this collection. $6750.
1936-D San Diego Commemorative Hal Dollar. PCGS Graded MS67.
Beautiful and rich green-gold toning on both sides. $2950.
1925 Vancouver Commemorative Half Dollar. PCGS Graded MS66.
Blue, green russet and gold toning over lustrous surfaces. $3850.
1946-D Booker T. Washington Commemorative Half Dollar. PCGS Graded MS67.
Brilliant green toning with just a hint of rose on both sides. Toning fanatics will go crazy over this one. $2975.
1951-S Booker T. Washington Commemorative Half Dollar. PCGS Graded MS67 CAC.
Hints of green and gold peripheral toning over near white centers. BTW's are nearly impossible to find without numerous marks in the prime focal areas. $2750.
1944 'No P' Jefferson Nickel Contemporary Counterfeit. Very Fine [uncertified].
This is the famous (perhaps infamous?) Henning nickel. The story of these contemporary counterfeits is well known. Since you can Google it, I won't repeat it here. This is one of the early die state coins, where the “R” in PLURIBUS is perfect. $55.
1807 Draped Bust Half Dollar. Genuine, but with Large, False Cuds. Very Good (uncertified).
What a great piece for the bust half dollar variety specialist. This is a genuine Draped bust half dollar where someone has added large cuds on both sides of the coin, perhaps to give the appearance of a rare die state. I can't be certain of the intent of the maker, but it appears to be done with silver solder or molten silver, and it was done long ago, judging by the deep, matching gray toning on both the coin and the added cuds. Have fun and fool your friends! $300.
1858 Gold Dollar. Contemporary Counterfeit Struck in German Silver. Very Fine [uncertified].
Type 3. Quite unusual in that it appears to be struck in German Silver, and has no plating remaining. This is significant because counterfeiters of this era were known to use this metal to make some of their other concoctions (most famously the bogus bust half dollars). There may be others out there, but this is the only one I have come across in this metal. $250.
1861 Gold Dollar. Contemporary Counterfeit. Very Fine [uncertified].
Type 3. A handsome specimen, free of damage and with a golden color with a hint of coppery tinge. Reeded edge. $85.
Contact info to reserve coins:
Website - www.DaveWcoins.com
My email address – firstname.lastname@example.org
Phone - (203) 231-1213