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of numismatics for dealers, collectors, and
investors of United States Rare Coins
Auctions Have Improved With Age
Back in the seventies, major auctions brought out some wonderful rarities and it was really the only way collectors could view and purchase so many amazing coins at one time. Most successful auctions had a total prices realized of two to four million dollars. Little did we know back then that the new century would bring auctions that regularly realize ten to twenty million dollars and more, and single coins selling for as much as some of those earlier auctions had totaled. The depth and breadth of these auctions have helped pave the way for numismatics to gain a superb reputation, an evolution that is nothing less than astonishing.
Heritage Auctions recently featured the Eugene H. Gardner Collection in New York City. Prices realized nearly hit $20 million; and this is only part one of four sales. For over fifty years, Mr. Gardner has meticulously assembled one of the most historic collections of all time. He is not only a top-notch collector, he is also a historian who documents his coins and is more than willing to share his knowledge with anyone who takes the time to listen. Not only does this auction feature an abundance of true rarities, the coins are totally original with most showcasing patina that draws the eye to the exceptional quality of each individual coin.
With so many quality coins assembled in one sale it is difficult to select any one as the ultimate highlight; however, if price realized dictates the selection, then it would be the 1796 Bust Dime. And this is not just an ordinary Bust Dime. This PCGS certified beauty grades MS67 and includes the CAC sticker. There are none finer for this variety and the final price was $881,250.
1796 Bust Dime MS67 PCGS CAC from Part I of the Eugene H. Gardner Collection sold for $881,250 in Heritage Auctions U.S. Coins Signature Auction in New York June 23, 2014
Due to the rarity of the 1796 Bust Dime in MS67, with only two certified, there were very few trades over the last six years. In July 2008 the FMV was $184,380 and in July 2009 the FMV was listed as $275,000. Today the FMV is at $325,000 nearly doubling in value in six years. With its CAC verification, extreme rarity, and multiple bidders vying for the coin at auction, it is no wonder that this coin brought quite a bit more than the current FMV.
Part I of the Gardner Collection also included a variety of early coins from Half Cents to Dollars. With so many rarities and varieties of specific dates, one could choose any number of coins to highlight. Your list of personal favorites could look completely different from the ones that we chose to include below.
|1793 Half Cent||PCGS MS63 BN||$95,175|
|1793 Chain Cent AMERI.||PCGS MS63 BN||$440,625|
|1793 Chain Cent AMERICA||PCGS MS64 BN||$396,563|
|1793 Wreath Cent Vine & Bars||PCGS MS68 BN||$329,000|
|1864 Two Cent Sm. Motto||PCGS PR66 Red||$105,750|
|1802 Half Dime||PCGS AU50||$352,500|
|1837 Half Dime No Stars||PCGS PR67 CAC||$105,750|
|1800 Bust Dime||PCGS MS66 CAC||$352,500|
|1822 Bust Dime||PCGS PR66 Cameo CAC||$440,625|
|1858 S Seated Dime||PCGS MS66 CAC||$88,125|
|1873 CC Seated Dime w/Arrows||NGC MS65||$199,750|
|1876 CC Twenty Cent||PCGS MS64||$470,000|
|1823/2 Bust Quarter||PCGS PR64 CAC||$396,563|
|1850 Seated Quarter||NGC PR68||$223,250|
|1871 CC Seated Quarter||PCGS MS65 CAC||$352,500|
|1901 S Barber Quarter||PCGS MS67 CAC||$258,500|
|1919 S Standing Liberty Quarter||PCGS MS67 FH||$235,000|
|1794 Flowing Hair Half||NGC MS61||$152,750|
|1797 Draped Bust Half||PCGS MS63||$282,000|
|1839 O Bust Half||PCGS MS66 CAC||$129,250|
|1855 Seated Dollar||PCGS MS64 CAC||$141,000|
As you can see there were quite a few CAC coins which contributed to some of the premiums paid for these rarities; there were as many as 350 CAC coins available. As we have learned from previous auctions, this has become a major selling point for most coins and especially for better rarities.
The Gardner collection contained two 1796 Bust Dimes; one was an MS64 certified by NGC and the other the previously mentioned MS67 by PCGS with the CAC sticker. The difference in price realized was $840,000. This shows the power of demand for the highest grade available and the invaluable knowledge of the population reports. There are a total of 24 coins certified in MS64 by PCGS and NGC and 29 in MS65 & MS66. There are only two in MS67, the present piece and one certified by NGC.
Many of the coins sold have truly remarkable pedigrees behind them indicating that prominent numismatists shared the history of some magnificent U.S. coins. There will be many adjustments to FMV prices from this fantastic sale over the next couple of weeks, be sure to check the Online FMV Price Guide for these changes.
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Our monthly article detailing specific areas of numismatics for dealers, collectors, and investors of U.S. Rare Coins