PCGS Graded 21 of Top 25 Most-Expensive United States Coins Sold in 2019

21 Including A $3.96 Million Coin That Crossed Over To PCGS

(February 19, 2020) – Professional Coin Grading Service (www.PCGS.com) closed the books on 2019 by proudly announcing that 20 of the 25 most-expensive United States coins sold at public auction this past year were in PCGS slabs. That number climbs to 21 when counting a rarity that was certified by a competing grading service, realized nearly $4 million dollars, and then almost immediately after trading hands was crossed over into a PCGS holder. Sales data below was compiled from the top seven auction companies, including Heritage Auctions, Stack’s Bowers Galleries, Legend Rare Coin Auctions, GreatCollections, Goldberg Coins & Collectibles, Sotheby’s, and Bonhams.

The Top 25 list includes:

  1. Atwater / Eliasberg Specimen 1885 Trade Dollar, now PCGS PR65+CAM
    Sold by Heritage Auctions for $3,960,000, 1/10/2019 (PCGS Cert #36982251)
  2. Ted Naftzger Specimen 1793 AMERI Chain Cent, From The Alan V. Weinberg Collection, PCGS MS64+Brown
    Sold by Heritage Actions for $1,500,000, 1/10/2019 (PCGS Cert #35744104)
  3. Dr. Jerry Buss Specimen 1894-S Barber Dime PCGS PR63
    Sold by Stack’s Bowers Galleries for $1,320,000, 8/15/2019 (PCGS Cert #37859748)
  4. Granberg / Brand / Eliasberg Specimen 1884 Trade Dollar, From The Greensboro Collection, NGC PR66
    Sold by Heritage Auctions for $1,140,000, 1/10/2019

  5. 1879 $4 Coiled Hair, NGC PR66CAM
    Sold by Heritage Auctions for $1,050,000, 1/10/2019

  6. 1795 $10 Capped Bust Right Eagle 13 Leaves, PCGS MS64+
    Sold by Legend Rare Coin Auctions for $822,500, 3/21/2019 (PCGS Cert #06309771)
  7. Warner / Winsor / Weinberg Specimen 1792 Silver Center Cent, From the Alan V. Weinberg Collection, PCGS SP58+Brown
    Sold by Heritage Auctions for $750,000, 1/10/2019 (PCGS Cert #35744102)
  8. 1795 $10 Capped Bust Right Eagle 9 Leaves, PCGS MS63
    Sold by Stack’s Bowers Galleries for $630,000, 8/15/2019 (PCGS Cert #36674524)
  9. Parmelee / Eliasberg / Bass Specimen 1837 $2.50 Classic Head, PCGS PR66+
    Sold by Heritage Auctions for $576,000, 8/14/2019 (PCGS Cert #25647468)
  10. Parmelee / Brand / Norweb / Weinberg Specimen 1792 Small Pattern Cent, From The Alan V. Weinberg Collection, PCGS SP53BN
    Sold by Heritage Auctions for $552,000, 1/10/2019 (PCGS Cert #35744101)
  11. 1838-O Capped Bust Half Dollar, PCGS PR63
    Sold by Stack’s Bowers Galleries for $504,000, 11/15/2019 (PCGS Cert #38283581)
  12. 1843 $10 Liberty Head, PCGS PR64DCAM
    Sold by Heritage Auctions for $480,000, 8/14/2019 (PCGS Cert #37286327)
  13. 1975 No-S Roosevelt Dime, PCGS PR68
    Sold by Heritage Auctions for $456,000, 9/6/2019 (PCGS Cert #20519253)
  14. Battle Born Specimen 1876-CC Twenty Cent, PCGS MS64+
    Sold by Heritage Auctions for $456,000, 9/8/2019 (PCGS Cert #20714029)
  15. 1876-CC Doubled Die Obverse Twenty Cent, PCGS MS65
    Sold by Stack’s Bowers Galleries for $456,000, 8/15/2019 (PCGS Cert #37861676)
  16. 1827/3 Capped Bust Quarter, PCGS PR65
    Sold by Heritage Auctions for $444,000, 1/10/2019 (PCGS Cert #50242720)
  17. 1907 $10 Indian Wire Rim, From The Joan Zieg Steinbrenner Collection, NGC MS68
    Sold by Heritage Auctions for $432,000, 8/14/2019

  18. Dallas Bank Collection 1856-O $20 Liberty Head, NGC AU50
    Sold by Heritage Auctions for $408,000, 8/18/2019

  19. 1890 $20 Liberty Head, PCGS PR67DCAM
    Sold by Heritage Auctions for $396,000, 8/18/2019 (PCGS Cert #37286330)
  20. 1798/7 $10 Capped Bust Right Stars 7×6, PCGS AU58
    Sold by Stack’s Bowers Galleries for $384,000, 8/15/2019 (PCGS Cert #36674535)
  21. 1930-S $20 Saint-Gaudens, PCGS MS66+
    Sold by Stack’s Bowers Galleries for $372,000, 8/15/2019 (PCGS Cert #30433201)
  22. 1938-S Mercury Dime, PCGS MS68+
    Sold by Legend Rare Coin Auctions for $364,500, 6/27/2019 (PCGS Cert #37675464)
  23. 1792 Copper Pattern Disme, From The Alan V. Weinberg Collection, PCGS SP55BN
    Sold by Heritage Auctions for $336,000, 1/10/2019 (PCGS Cert #35744099)
  24. Farouk / Norweb 1884 Trade Dollar, From The Poulos Family Collection, PCGS PR63
    Sold by Heritage Auctions for $336,000, 8/18/2019 (PCGS Cert #14279405)
  25. 1792 Silver Center Cent, PCGS SP35BN
    Sold by Heritage Auctions for $336,000, 4/25/2019 (PCGS Cert #25613850)

“That 20 of the 25 most valuable United States coins trading hands in 2019 were in PCGS holders affirms the trust and confidence the rare coin market has in PCGS,” says PCGS President Brett Charville. The downcrossing of the $3.96 million 1885 Trade Dollar into a PCGS holder was a landmark moment of 2019. “This clearly goes to show that the best coins are found in PCGS holders.”

It was a great year for PCGS capped by many other accomplishments, including the unveiling of the set registry achievement program, expansion of the Prooflike designation, the release of the new PCGS Rarities holder, and enhancement of the PCGS CoinFact App with the combined power of PCGS Price Guide and PCGS Photograde. The year 2019 also saw PCGS parent company Collectors Universe certify its 75 millionth collectible, speaking to the popularity of PCGS and the solid reputation the company has built since its founding nearly 35 years ago in 1986.

Additional milestones outside of vintage United States coin certification in 2019 include the launching of the Quarter Quest program for 2019 America The Beautiful Quarters struck at the West Point Mint bearing the W mintmark, as well as the launching of encapsulation of United States Mint serialized Certificates of Authenticity. Adds Charville, “It was a tremendous year for PCGS, and I hope in 2019 we made one thing abundantly clear: we’re listening to our customers, and our commitment to lead the numismatic industry when it comes to developing innovative products and programs that excite and better serve the numismatic community is unmatched by any other company in the entire numismatic hobby.”

About Professional Coin Grading Service

Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS) is the premier third-party coin and banknote grading company that was launched in 1986. Over nearly 35 years, PCGS has examined and certified some 43 million U.S. and world coins, medals, and tokens with a combined value of more than $36.6 billion. For more information about PCGS products and services, including how to submit your coins for authentication and grading, please visit www.PCGS.com or call PCGS Customer Service at (800) 447-8848.

Defining “Greatness” Among Modern World Coins

100 Greatest Modern World Coins(Pelham, Alabama) — In March 2020 Whitman Publishing will release 100 Greatest Modern World Coins, by numismatists Charles Morgan and Hubert Walker. The 168-page coffee-table hardcover will be available from booksellers and hobby shops nationwide, and online (including at www.Whitman.com). Here, the book’s authors address two central questions of their manuscript: What makes a modern coin “great” . . . and why do great coins matter?

When it comes to coins, how does one define greatness? This is a daunting question and one posed to generations of collectors and numismatic researchers. As it pertains to Whitman Publishing’s library of “100 Greatest” books, we applied a number of criteria as we wrote our volume 100 Greatest Modern World Coins.

In the very first numismatic book in the line, 100 Greatest U.S. Coins, authors Jeff Garrett and Ron Guth outlined six factors: rarity, value, quality, popularity, beauty, and history. Given that Garrett and Guth were writing about a finite set of homogeneous U.S. coin issues, the over-emphasis of any one of these factors (save perhaps beauty) might lead to a rather uninteresting book.

Fortunately for all of us, in the first (and each subsequent) edition, this pair of top-tier numismatic researchers found a successful mix that works great for the U.S. coin series. Their books have sparked many lively discussions among the hobby faithful.

When it came to developing our own criteria for 100 Greatest Modern World Coins, we had to consider that the sweep of twentieth-century world-coin production was far more complex than an expert survey of the 100 greatest U.S. coin issues, nearly all of which have years of documented price performance and reasonably familiar back stories. Many rare world coins struck in the past 120 years are not well known outside of their issuing countries. Exploring historic auction data for the sale of these coins often requires specialist knowledge and years of market participation. Furthermore, as a collector steeped in American culture, one must be careful not to overemphasize Western aesthetics concerning art produced by other cultures. It’s a delicate dance, to be sure, but one we took a tremendous amount of care to execute as fairly as possible.

To us, compiling a list of 100 coins was more a matter of informed compromise.

When we set out to make our selections, we started by looking at the coinage output of every country around the globe spanning the past 120 years. We started with the year 1901, not because a valid case couldn’t be made that “modern coinage” started decades, or even a century or more, before, but because we felt the twentieth century was such a consequential period for numismatics that the coins of this century deserved to be considered among their peers. From a numismatic perspective, we consider this period to be an essential area of study to understand the present and future role of coins in society. Over the course of 100 coins, we embarked on an effort to tell that story.

To choose the coins on our list, we opted to take into consideration the following criteria.

Rarity. Generally speaking, coins are struck to be instruments of commerce that trade freely in exchange for goods and services, and, in order to achieve this goal, should not be rare. But there are instances where coins are struck in very limited numbers.

Among our selections, you will find coins struck for kings and queens; coins struck in limited numbers as presentation pieces for important members of government; pattern coins accidentally released into circulation; Proof issues struck in lower numbers than their circulation-strike counterparts; and coins that, for whatever reason, have had most of their mintages lost to time.
Rarity is an important factor that affects a coin’s numismatic value, but it is not the sole indicator of it.

Innovation. Over the course of the twentieth century, mints around the world introduced a number of important innovations that changed the global landscape of coins. Some of these creations were technical and involved processes and alloys used to strike coins. Some were artistic and introduced bold new aesthetics for coin design that paved the way for a global reimagining of the art form. Other innovations were driven by necessity or the needs of the market, such as long-overdue coinage reforms or the introduction of bullion coins as investment instruments.

The twentieth century introduced enormous challenges to the continued utility of coins as a circulating medium. Every step of the way, the world’s coin producers, both big and small, rose to the challenge and secured a viable place for coinage.

Coin Sets. Some of the greatest coins of the century need to be viewed in a broader context. Not every entry in our 100 Greatest Modern World Coins is an individual coin. In certain instances we study sets of coins. These sets may include one or more coins that, if considered individually, are sufficiently important to be included on our list. Other entries are known to collectors primarily as sets and it would be inconceivable to talk about one coin without discussing the others. Our goal was to valorize as many of the highlights of twentieth-century world coinage as possible, and in doing this we’ve included a fair number of sets.

Oddities and Emergency Issues. Human beings are amazing and resilient, and some of the most fascinating numismatic stories to unfold in the twentieth century center around coins that are a little off the beaten path. Some are limited-run vanity issues projecting the power and prestige of failed kings and despots, issued on the cusp of their overthrow, while others are crudely made pieces of emergency money issued by revolutionaries or by desperate people whose “revolutionary” idea was to survive no matter the cost. If holding a coin is like holding history in your hands, then coins struck in these ironic, unusual, and desperate circumstances tell us something about human nature and have an intrinsic greatness that is hard to ignore.

Auction Data and Market Values. This book presented an interesting challenge: How does one weigh an entire range of factors relating to modern world-coin issues and organize the coins so that the broadest survey is possible and auction data, certified-coin populations, and collector popularity aren’t overemphasized? We made every effort to review a variety of auction sources, historical records, and market-maker insights about the coins presented in 100 Greatest Modern World Coins. But we know that not every auction for every world coin included (or excluded) has been taken into consideration.

We provide certain auction data and market values for general interest, but we do not want readers to get the mistaken impression that every modern world coin that has ever sold for a significant sum of money was automatically included in our selection. Conversely, some of the coins on our list are readily available to collectors and hardly considered rare at all. If you use 100 Greatest Modern Coins to make purchasing decisions about rare and valuable coins, know that our ranking system is an opinion and should not outweigh your due diligence and appreciation of a piece. Lists are conversation starters and not the final word. The beauty of this is that the numismatic hobby is forever evolving and there is no shortage of stories to tell.

Why Do Great Coins Matter?

Many of the entries in 100 Greatest Modern World Coins fall outside the financial means of most collectors, and some pieces are so rare that the only known examples are held in museums or institutional collections. Others are so seldom encountered that it may take generations for an example to come to market. That’s okay. More important than owning one of the world’s greatest coins is the enrichment that comes from knowing its story and relating this information to the pursuit of other coins of its type, of the period, or of its issuing country.

The rarest of the rare coins that we consider the greatest are truly landmarks on the numismatic skyline.

Other great coins might be expensive but approachable, or not very expensive at all. A few of the coins on our list may be available for a small premium over current market value—or even a small premium over face value. Regardless of cost or even the public’s general perception of them, these greatest world coins have an important story to tell . . . but then, so do great coins, so do good coins, and so do average coins. No matter the scope or scale of your collection, the coins you select have stories. Every coin ever struck plays some role in making coin collecting a dynamic hobby. It is our hope that in reading our book, 100 Greatest Modern World Coins, you find yourself inspired to discover these stories and propel forward our hobby community’s appreciation for coins both great and ordinary.

#   #   #
100 Greatest Modern World Coins
By Charles Morgan and Hubert Walker; foreword by Donald Scarinci
ISBN 0794846335
Hardcover, coffee-table (10 x 12 inches); 168 pages; full color; retail $29.95 U.S.

Andrew Jackson Presidential Silver Medal on Sale Feb. 24

Andre Jackson Silver MedalWASHINGTON – The United States Mint (Mint) will begin accepting orders for the Andrew Jackson Presidential Silver Medal (product code S807) on February 24 at noon EST. The medal is priced at $46.00.

Struck in 99.9 percent fine silver, the medal features Jackson’s portrait on the obverse (heads) with the inscriptions “ANDREW JACKSON,” “PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES,” and “A.D.1829.” Moritz Furst, an early nineteenth century medallic artist, designed and sculpted the obverse.

The medal’s reverse (tails) features the inscription “PEACE AND FRIENDSHIP,” symbolized by two hands clasped in a token of amity. On the cuff of the left wrist are three stripes and buttons, while the other wrist is bare. Above the hands, the pipe of peace and tomahawk are crossed over each other. The reverse was designed and sculpted by John Reich, United States Mint Assistant Engraver in the early nineteenth century.

Each medal is encapsulated and comes with a Certificate of Authenticity.

The Mint accepts orders at catalog.usmint.gov/ and 1-800-USA-MINT (872-6468). Hearing- and speech-impaired customers with TTY equipment may order at 1-888-321-MINT. Visit catalog.usmint.gov/customer-service/shipping.html for information about shipping options.

The Andrew Jackson Presidential Silver Medal will also be available at the Mint’s sales centers in Washington, D.C.; Philadelphia; and Denver. Availability may be limited and subject to change.

Note: To ensure that all members of the public have fair and equal access to United States Mint products, the United States Mint will not accept and will not honor orders placed prior to the official on-sale date of Feb. 24, 2020, at noon EST.

United States Mint Celebrates Official Release of 51st America the Beautiful Quarters® Program Coin

2020 National Park Of American SamoaUTULEI, American Samoa – The United States Mint (Mint) today officially launched the America the Beautiful Quarters® Program coin honoring the National Park of American Samoa. This is the first release of 2020, and the 51st coin overall in the program.

The reverse (tails) of the quarter depicts a Samoan fruit bat mother hanging in a tree with her pup, evoking the remarkable care and energy that this species puts into their offspring. The design is intended to promote awareness of the species’ threatened status due to habitat loss and commercial hunting. The National Park of American Samoa is the only park that is home to the Samoan fruit bat. Inscriptions on the coin are “NATIONAL PARK,” “AMERICAN SAMOA,” “2020,” and “E PLURIBUS UNUM.”

During his remarks, Mint Director David J. Ryder spoke about the significance of the new quarter design: “The National Park of American Samoa quarter serves as a symbol of conservation and care. Just as the mother fruit bat nurtures and protects her pup right here in the park, the people and villages of American Samoa work together to safeguard these protected resources.”

Additional participants included Attorney General Talauega Eleasalo Ale ; Congresswoman Aumua Amata Coleman Radewagen; Fiu Saelua, chief of staff of the governor’s office, who also served as master of ceremonies; Stanley Austin, Regional Director of the National Park Service’s Pacific West Region; and Scott Burch, Superintendent of the National Park of American Samoa.

The Mint released collectible rolls and bags of National Park of American Samoa quarters on February 3. These products can be purchased online at catalog.usmint.gov/coin-programs/america-the-beautiful-quarters-program/ or by calling 1-800-USA-MINT (872-6468).

The America the Beautiful Quarters® Program is a 12-year initiative that honors 56 national parks and other national sites authorized by Public Law 110-456. Each year of the program, the public has seen five new national sites depicted on the reverses (tails sides) of the America the Beautiful Quarters coins, with a final coin scheduled for release in 2021. The Mint is issuing these quarters in the order in which the national sites were officially established.

U.S. Mint News Release: Set of 2020 America the Beautiful Quarters® Silver Proof Coins on Sale Starting Feb. 20

2020 America the Beautiful Quarters Proof SetWASHINGTON – The 2020 United States Mint (Mint) America the Beautiful Quarters Silver Proof Set™ (product code 20AQ) will be available for purchase starting on February 20 at noon EST.

The set features all five 2020 America the Beautiful Quarters minted in 99.9 percent silver at the San Francisco Mint. Their reverse (tails) designs honor the National Park of American Samoa (American Samoa), Weir Farm National Historic Site (Connecticut), Salt River Bay National Historical Park and Ecological Preserve (United States Virgin Islands), Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park (Vermont), and Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve (Kansas).

All coins bear a common obverse (heads) design featuring John Flanagan’s 1932 portrait of George Washington. Inscriptions are “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,” “LIBERTY,” “IN GOD WE TRUST,” and “QUARTER DOLLAR.” A Certificate of Authenticity comes with each set.

The 2020 America the Beautiful Quarters Silver Proof Set is priced at $42.50. Orders will be accepted at catalog.usmint.gov and 1-800-USA-MINT (872-6468). Hearing- and speech-impaired customers with TTY equipment may order at 1-888-321-MINT. Shipping options are available at catalog.usmint.gov/customer-service/shipping.html.

The set can also be purchased through the Mint’s Product Enrollment Program. Learn more about this convenient ordering option at catalog.usmint.gov/shop/product-enrollments/.

Like most United States Mint products, this set will be available at the Mint’s sales centers in Washington, D.C.; Philadelphia; and Denver. Inventory is limited to availability and subject to change.

Note: To ensure that all members of the public have fair and equal access to United States Mint products, the United States Mint will not accept and will not honor orders placed prior to the official on-sale date of Feb. 20, 2020, at noon EST.

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