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Lot
20312

Canada: George V 50 Cents 1921,...

2010 January Signature World Coin Auction #3008

 
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Auction Ended On: Jan 3, 2010
Item Activity: 5 Internet/mail/phone bidders Number of Bidders
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Location:

Waldorf Astoria
301 Park Avenue
New York, NY 10022

Description:
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The 'King of Canadian Coins' - A Stunning 1921 50 Cents
George V 50 Cents 1921, KM25a, MS66 PCGS, Ex: Bass-Belzberg-Brown. At its previous appearance in the Belzberg Collection, auctioned by Heritage in January 2003, this example was graded MS65 by PCGS and also MS65 by ICCS. The issue has long been known as the "King of Canadian Coins," a rarity that saw only a few survivors escape the mint before the date's mass melting. As the Charlton Catalogue explains:

"This popular and very scarce coin was originally minted in considerable quantity. During the early and mid-1920s the demand for 50-cent pieces was very light; only 28,000 pieces were issued between 1921 and 1929. These are assumed to have been almost entirely 1920s. When a greater demand for this denomination arose later in 1929, the Master of the Ottawa Mint decided to melt the entire stock of 1920 and 1921 coins (amounting to some 480,392 pieces) and recoin the silver into 1929 coins. He took this decision because he feared that the public would suspect they were receiving counterfeits if a large quantity of coins with 'old' dates were issued. It is believed that the 75 or so 1921s that have survived came from Specimen sets sold to collectors, or from circulation strikes sold to Mint visitors."

Certainly, this example was well-kept from the time it was acquired. Both sides have powerful, slightly satiny luster that filters through rich green-gold and reddish-orange patina that shows copper and silver-gray accents. A shallow mark to the right of the last A in CANADA, in a hollow between two maple leaves, serves as a pedigree marker. A strong candidate for any Condition Census for the date.
From the Canadiana Collection

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