Heritage’s Central States Auctions Surpass $47 Million
Fresh-to-market coins and historical rarities pushed Heritage Auctions’ Central States Numismatic Society (CSNS) event to $47,783,690 across several sales of US coins and currency, a 42 percent increase from the auctioneer’s 2020 CSNS auctions and the highest total sold in the last five years. The sales offered more than 15,800 lots 22nd-25th April 2021 in Dallas where the auctions were relocated after the convention itself was cancelled. “This was a season for numismatic history,” said James Halperin, Co-founder of Heritage Auctions. “It’s no exaggeration that this year’s auctions offered a once-in-a-lifetime selection for experienced collectors, the likes of which we may not see in a generation or more.” The event offered important highlights from powerhouse collections, including the Donald G. Partrick Collection and the Bob R. Simpson Collection, Part V.
Three Coins broke the Million-Dollar Mark.
- A 1792 quarter dollar, Judd-13, Pollock-15, High R.7 AU58 NGC, one of four known, sold for $1,260,000. The piece was put up for auction by the New-York Historical Society and was never previously offered for public sale.
- One of two examples known, a 1776 Continental dollar, CURENCY, Silver, Newman 1-C, Breen-1091, Hodder 1-A.3, W-8450, R.8, VF35 NGC. CAC, from the Partrick Collection, ended at $1,140,000.
- From the Simpson Collection, an 1866 $1 No Motto Seated dollar, PR63+ PCGS. CAC. Judd-540, Pollock-605, R.8, the only example available to collectors, brought $1,050,000.
Copper Prototype of First US Dollar
The Simpson Collection also offered the 1794 No Stars Flowing Hair dollar in Copper, Judd-18, Pollock-27, Unique, VF25 PCGS, an experiment in copper widely considered to be the first dollar struck at the fledgling US Mint, a prototype for silver dollars to come. It sold for $840,000, well above its $500,000 high estimate.
The 230-year-old dollar has been off the market for 20 years, residing in the private collection of Bob R. Simpson, part-owner of the Texas Rangers baseball team and a lifelong Texas energy executive. Simpson purchased the coin in 2008. Simpson has been selling highlights from his collection through Heritage Auctions, which have so far totaled more than $54 million. The unique rarity was excavated from the site of the first Philadelphia Mint before 1876, according to the coin’s first owner at its first auction appearance in 1890. “This coin has traded hands just eight times during the last 230 years,” said Jacob Lipson, a numismatist and cataloger at Heritage Auctions. “This is a coin of nearly unsurpassed historical significance.”
The front of the coin features the adopted Flowing Hair portrait of Liberty with LIBERTY above and the date, 1794, below. The reverse is the regular-issue silver dollar design with a Small Eagle standing on a rock within a wreath and UNITED STATES OF AMERICA around the border. The copper coin features a lettered edge that reads HUNDRED CENTS ONE DOLLAR OR UNIT with ornamentation between the words.
Experts have spent more than two centuries researching the prototype, which closely resembles later silver dollars minted in Philadelphia, which now command $4 million to $5 million each. The variations between this copper piece and its silver counterparts make it unique among dollars struck following the Mint Act of 2nd April 1792 because it is missing telltale decorative stars on coins stamped later. “It’s all in the stars,” Lipson said. “Similar “starless coins,” such as a copper half dime, are held in the Smithsonian Institution’s National Numismatic Collection and this copper dollar is considered the companion piece to the half dime.”
Notable Results from Various Collections
An extraordinarily rare 1793 Washington President Oval Peace Medalby Philadelphia silversmith Joseph Richardson, Baker 174 Unlisted, Belden 8-B, Prucha 31, Gilcrease 6.12, graded genuine by NGC, ended at $630,000 following 42 bids. A standout piece from the Partrick collection, it is one of the few surviving examples of the Washington engraved peace medal available outside of institutional settings. A stunning 1884 Trade dollar, PR63+ Cameo PCGS. CAC, a classic rarity in American coinage, with a population of only 10 examples in all grades, sold for $480,000 and a gorgeous Cameo example of an 1878 Liberty Head half eagle, struck in gold, Judd-1570, PR65+ PCGS. CAC. Unique, Ex: Newlin-Green-Farouk, brought $456,000. Two additional historic coins from the Partrick collection presented rare opportunities for collectors as a 1796 No Pole half cent, the third-finest known, graded C-1, B-1, MS63+ Brown NGC. CAC, sold for $432,000, and the 1796 With Pole half cent, C-2, B-2a, High R.4, MS65 Red and Brown NGC. CAC, a coin tied for the finest ever graded, sold for $384,000.
Fresh-to-Market US Currency Find Sets World Record
Among the $5,591,888 in US currency which traded hands during the one-day auction, several choice rarities were offered to collectors for the first time. A spectacular new discovery, the first reported Kansas City District 1928 $10,000 Note, PMG Very Fine 30, sold for $456,000, setting the world record as the most expensive small size note ever sold at auction. The wonderful new entrant to the census of just 10 known 1928 $10,000 Federal Reserve Notes becomes number 11 and also adds another district to the known side of the ledger. Fortuitously for collectors, it is a pleasing, evenly circulated piece displaying good color and just honest wear. A highly sought-after $5,000 1934 Federal Reserve Note, PMG Choice Uncirculated 64, in breathtaking condition, brought $168,000, the most expensive note of its kind ever sold at Heritage. These $5,000 and $10,000 notes are listed in the Top 100 Greatest United States Notes, and are highly regarded as trophies that serve as pillars in some of the best numismatic collections ever achieved. A second $5,000 1934 Federal Reserve Note, PMG Choice About Unc 58, from Dallas, sold for $144,000, also besting prices previously achieved for notes of its kind.
The finer of only two known, a 1255a Federal Reserve 10¢ Third Issue Hand Signed Green Back, PMG Extremely Fine 40, sold for $108,000. It took top lot honors among the 362-lot important Tabacco Family Collection. The second uncut sheet of four notes, produced for the $1 1896 Educational Series, ended at $108,000. A penned courtesy notation along the bottom margin reads, “Issued July 23, 1896 Washington, DC 12:30 PM D(aniel) N. Morgan.” Uncut sheets of large size type notes are all very rare and the desirability kicks up considerably when the notes are of an important personality note type. Morgan served as Treasurer of the United States from 1st June 1893 to 30th June 1897.
Heritage’s next Platinum Night sale is its 6th-7th May 2021 presentation of World and Ancient Coins, followed by five, special online auctions throughout the month and featuring the Don Bonser Error Collection, Part 3. For more information on upcoming auctions and prices realized, visit Heritage Auctions’ Rare Coins portal.