All I can say is “wow.” The number of responses and the feedback received from last week’s letter were amazing. Thank you for all of the messages, support, and encouragement. While it wasn’t all helpful or positive, the correspondence from collectors and those that love the hobby was truly amazing, and I’m grateful for that. I won’t dive deeper into the subject this week, but the responses brought up a number of deeper questions that deserve to be answered, and I want to do those inquiries justice. Over the next few weeks, I’ll try to address one or more of these issues and keep the conversations going. For those of you who missed the message, you can view it in our blog here.
This week we had a number of large collections pop into our office, so we have been busy breaking those down and figuring them. We also have our next batch of selections from the Hansen collection coming to auction, as well as several other collections arriving in coming weeks. As always, things are moving forward at DLRC and we hope that you find something of interest in this week’s message. For now, we will leave you with a few of our favorite coins and we thank you for reading!
John Brush and Your Friends at DLRC
Why we love it: This lustrous AU issue is primarily white with subtle highlights of lavender, peach, and gold. It’s a lovely example of a late die state with many die cracks and light clashes visible to the naked eye. A planchet flaw covers the T in Liberty, making this coin an excellent example of the Mint’s quality at the time.
Value: The PCGS Price Guide is at $32,500, and the CPG is at $27,800. We believe this piece is high end for the grade, and the extra value added by the Hansen provenance makes the starting bid of $33,500 exceptionally fair. We expect to see some strong bidding for this early American beauty.
Why we love it: A first-year example from a popular series, this capped bust $5 has satiny surfaces that precariously border an MS65. Had the luster been just a touch stronger, we think it would have merited a promotion in grade. Regardless, this is a particularly strong MS64+ with CAC approval, crisp devices, and soft denticles as is typical for the date.
Value: The PCGS Price Guide puts this coin at $67,500. We’re making this stunner available at just $66,500 via Make Offer, a full thousand under the PCGS Price Guide!
Why we love it: This piece is a strong AU with just a few points of friction holding it back from an uncirculated grade. The devices are clear with smooth chocolate fields, and the characteristic obverse die crack is clearly visible. This example will be a strong addition to any AU large cent or type set.
Value: With the PCGS Price Guide at $12,000 and CPG at $12,100 for MS60BN (with no AU58 price listed), the starting bid of only $11,500 is a bargain for this high-end beauty. You won’t find an AU coin much nicer than this, and we expect strong bidding from the every-man registry set collectors.
Why we love it: With the highest mintage for any pre-1831 quarter, the 1818 is a popular choice among type collectors. However, even this common date is quite rare in high grades, and this MS65 piece is undoubtedly in the top tier, with only five graded higher. An abundance of original luster and golden toning around the rims highlight crisp, clear devices on this incredibly well-preserved piece.
Value: The PCGS Price Guide is at $28,500 while the CPG suggests $27,200. This issue oozes in eye appeal and is high end for the grade, as evidenced by the CAC approval. It’s available for just $32,500 via Make Offer.
Why we love it: This Civil War date is difficult to find uncirculated and many of the existing MS examples are from shipwrecks. This AU58 example is strong for the grade, as evidenced by the CAC sticker, and is an appealing example for the date. Heavily marked fields are the norm, and the even color on this piece helps disguise any marks.
Value: The PCGS Price Guide is at $6,450, while the CPG suggests $5,500. This a very strong AU58 with CAC approval, and is sure to bring more than un-stickered pieces. Auction records go up to $8,700 in 2019 for CAC pieces, and we feel the starting price of $6,500 is sure to appeal to serious collectors.
Why we love it: This lovely proof is tied for the finest known Deep Cameo out of an original mintage of only 886 pieces. The edges are warm shades of rose and lavender that fade into gold centers, all on a backdrop of highly reflective mirrors and frosted devices. Deep Cameos of this date are unusual with only six graded at PCGS, without taking the superb technical grade into consideration.
Value: The PCGS Price Guide suggests $13,000, while the CPG gives no prices for Deep Cameo pieces. This piece last sold in 2011 from Bowers & Merena for $10,063. We believe our starting price of $11,500 is a good reflection of its increased value and is a bargain for the rarity.
Why we love it: This satiny gold eagle is an affordable option for anyone on the lookout for high-end gold. With only four graded higher, this 1879 is a lustrous beauty with clear devices and satin fields. Factor in the Bass pedigree, and you have a top tier piece at an affordable price.
Value: The PCGS Price Guide puts this piece at $5,000 and the CPG suggests $4,560. We’re undercutting both with an asking price of $4,400 via Make Offer.
Why we love it: This chocolate beauty is one of the plate coins for the type on PCGS CoinFacts and has a population of four with one higher in brown. Subtle hints of blue dance around the devices without disrupting the even fields. It doesn’t get much better than this for brown large cents.
Value: The PCGS Price Guide suggests $5,500, while the CPG is at $5,250. Even with the added CAC approval, we’ve decided to go with the CPG on this one and make it available for just $5,250 via Make Offer.
Why we love it: The Hawaiian commemorative half dollar is a key to the silver commemorative series with an early date and mintage of only 10,008. They frequently come with significant toning, sometimes appealing and sometimes dark and distracting. We are happy to report that this piece is not only a high grade, but also about as close to white as you'll find for the issue, with only subtle hints of toning on the reverse.
Value: The PCGS Price Guide recommends $4,750 and the CPG sits at $5,440. We believe the CAC approval and surprisingly white surfaces justify a premium, resulting in the starting bid of $6,250. You’d be hard-pressed to find a cleaner example.
Why we love it: This low mintage date is consistently characterized by low eye appeal across almost all known pieces. The reverse is always incredibly weak, as dies from 1859 were poor quality and often reused. This example in particular is fairly clear for the date with a significant amount of hair detail and lines visible in some stars. It has strong luster and just a small amount of rub holds it back from uncirculated.
Value: The PCGS Price Guide puts it at $7,500 and the CPG sits at $8,750. We’ve priced this high-end beauty at $7,750, available through Make Offer.
Why we love it: This piece was part of a set of Morgans put together by Gregg Bingham, linebacker for the Houston Oilers from 1973 to 1984. His collection was sold in 2011 as the NFL Set and included this Proof-Like beauty. It has a population of two with none finer in MS66, and three in MS66 DMPL with none finer.
Value: The PCGS Price Guide recommends $13,000, and this piece last sold in 2009 for $13,225. We believe the strong contrast between the mirrors and frosted devices, coupled with the NFL Set pedigree, easily elevates this piece above the average. We have set the starting bid at $17,250.
Why we love it: This stunning red Indian head cent has a population of nine with none finer. 1866 is a rare date in any grade, but especially so in such an eye-catching MS66. This will be a fantastic addition to any uncirculated set of Indian head cents.
Value: The PCGS Price Guide is at $18,000 and the CPG suggests $16,900. We’re giving you the opportunity for quite a bargain at only $15,000 via Make Offer. Don’t let this top-pop beauty slip away!
Why we love it: This stunning example of a key date is sure to be a standout in your collection. It’s covered in fluorescent gold, green, rose, and blue toning. Any 1949 D Franklin halves are hard to find in MS65 or higher, and this piece is the cream of the crop at MS66+ FBL with none graded higher.
Value: The PCGS Price Guide is at $5,500. Auction records since 2015 have ranged everywhere from $4,583 to $8,813, and the starting price of only $5,000 puts this high-end coin on the lower end of the auction spectrum.
Why we love it: Most 1878-CC Morgans are found with significant bag marks across the fields, resulting in thousands in the low-MS range. This issue is among the best examples extant with only seven graded finer. It’s vividly toned, with crescents of rose gold, lavender, and seafoam green on the obverse, and a center of violet surrounded by rings of steel blue and gold on the reverse. The devices are sharp, and even Liberty’s cheek remains clear of any distracting marks.
Value: The PCGS Price Guide suggests $12,500. We believe the toning and CAC approval put this piece a cut above the rest, but it’s still available at only $10,975 via Make Offer.
Why we love it: This early 20th century issue has strong luster and a light copper color reminiscent of the early copper-nickel small cents. A common date, but not a common grade, this would make an excellent piece for a type set.
Value: The PCGS Price Guide puts this piece at $550 and the CPG at $533. We’re asking $550 in Make Offer, right on par with both. Auction records from the past year have ranged everywhere from $468 to $840, leaving plenty of room for the buyer.
Why we love it: Calling all modern collectors! This MS68 RD beauty is the amongst the best with only 10 graded higher in MS68+ RD. The fields are satiny and streaked with texture, as is typical for the era, and it flaunts sharp devices with bright red luster – what more can you ask for?
Value: The PCGS Price Guide suggests $375. We’re asking for a Make Offer price of $400 for this exceptional modern gem.
Why we love it: One of the top key dates for the buffalo nickel series, this is a charming circulated example that will fit in nicely with any circulated set. The date and mint mark are clear on this highly original piece and the wear is even resulting in excellent eye appeal for a VF coin.
Value: The PCGS Price Guide is at $375 and the CPG suggests $306 in VF20. We’re asking $375 via Make offer, right in line with PCGS.
Why we love it: 1875 was the first year of issue for the ill-fated twenty cent piece. It was intended mainly to circulate in the West, and as a result, very few were minted in Philadelphia. It was unpopular in all parts of the country because of its similarity to the quarter and it was discontinued in 1878. This example certainly did its time in circulation beyond the four years of their mintage. The wear is even and it’s toned to highlight the devices, resulting in an appealing F15.
Value: The PCGS Price Guide puts this low-mintage piece at $320 and the CPG suggests $280 at F12. This coin is absolutely above F12, and we’re asking for $350 through our Make Offer function. Don't miss your chance to give this journeyman 20c a permanent home.