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Lot
5951

1851 $50 LE Humbert Fifty Dollar, Lettered Edge, 887 Thous. 50 Rev. AU58 PCGS. CAC. K-4, R.5....

2013 August 8 - 10 US Coins Signature Auction - Rosemont #1188

 
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Auction Ended On: Aug 9, 2013
Item Activity: 7 Internet/mail/phone bidders Number of Bidders
1,002 page views
Location: Hyatt Rosemont
6350 N. River Road
Rosemont, IL
60018
Description:
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1851 Humbert Fifty Dollar, Lettered Edge
887 Thous., 50 Reverse, K-4, AU58
1851 $50 LE Humbert Fifty Dollar, Lettered Edge, 887 Thous. 50 Rev. AU58 PCGS. CAC. K-4, R.5. The United States Assay Office was an amalgam of the coinage operations of Moffat & Co. and the powers vested in New York watch-case maker Augustus Humbert as United States Assayer of Gold for California. The Assay Office, precursor to the San Francisco Mint, proved a mixed blessing. Its issues were heavily produced and provided a semblance of official imprimatur to made-in-California money. On the other hand, various smaller-denomination gold coins by private issuers already had been in circulation, and Humbert's discrediting assays, distributed far and wide by James King of William, led to a ban on such coins by the California Legislature and disrupted commerce.

The early Humbert fifty dollar issues in the now-famous octagonal format had lettering around their edges: AUGUSTUS / HUMBERT / UNITED / STATES / ASSAYER / OF GOLD, / CALIFORNIA / 1851. This example has the denomination both on obverse and reverse, on the latter side as a simple 50 in the middle. Surfaces are deep orange-gold, indicative of the copper inherent in the coin's 887-fine gold alloy. While the coin has its share of corner bumps and rim and margin abrasions, the luster is broad and inviting with tiny prooflike pools within the lettering, making for an all-around pleasing piece. Previously certified as MS60 by NGC; insert accompanies lot. Listed on page 381 of the 2014 Guide Book. Population: 2 in 58, 3 finer (6/13).
An Offering From The Liberty Collection. (PCGS# 10208)

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