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The Finest 1799/8 NC-1 Cent; Discovery Coin for the Variety

1799/8 1C Fine 15 NGC. Fine 12 EAC. NC-1, R.7. The reverse of this coin was illustrated in both Early American Cents and Penny Whimsy. This piece was also illustrated in the Noyes book and is the plate coin in the Breen Large Cent Encyclopedia. It is also the discovery coin for the variety, and was first identified by Dr. Sheldon among coins in the Geiss Collection sale. Apparently Sheldon must have kept to himself until after he was able to secure the coin for his own collection. Later in 1947, he turned down an offer of $2,000 from George H. Clapp. It was a dozen years before another example was identified. Just six more examples have turned up in the past four and a half decades. The Census for these eight coins is 12, 7, 5 (3), 3 (2), 2. We have to believe that nearly every higher grade 1799 overdate cent has been examined by this time, and that the chances of a new discovery exceeding this for grade is slim. Over the years, this is only the sixth time that any example of this variety has been sold at public auction with proper attribution. The other auction appearances realized the following prices: Fair 2 (1/75) $1,900; Fair 2 (1/86) $1,870; VG7 (9/86) $5,500; Good 5 (9/98) $6,612.50; Fine 12 (1/96) $30,800. The trend is ever increasing prices for this rarity, and we fully expect that the present sale will set a new record for this variety. In a recent conversation, Wes Rasmussen mentioned that this is his favorite coin in the collection. Mr. Holmes, you may already own one, but this is a nine-point upgrade. Mr. Husak, what a nice match for your other coins. Mr. Wadlington, here's another finest known rarity for your collection. To everyone else, come join the fun.
This is a wonderful coin for the grade, with even medium olive-brown color on both sides. The surfaces have microscopic roughness, however, they are much finer than normally encountered for the date, regardless of variety. In fact, this coin would be far above average for any 1799 variety, let alone this Non-Collectible rarity. This coin is quite sharp, and was graded VF20 in both texts by Dr. Sheldon. Del Bland lists this as Fine 12 in his Condition Census, the same grade assigned in the 1996 Robinson Brown Sale. Bill Noyes has recorded a grade of VG10 in his July 2003 Penny Prices, downgraded from Fine 12 in his earlier reference. It is our belief that a grade of Fine 12 or Fine 15 is correct.
Ex: New England Collection; Frederic W. Geiss (B. Max Mehl, 2/47), lot 48, for $400; Judge Thomas L. Gaskill (1947); Dr. William H. Sheldon (4/19/72); R.E. Naftzger, Jr. (2/23/92); Eric Streiner (3/20/92); Robinson S. Brown, Jr. (Superior, 1/96), lot 257.(#1446)(Registry values: P6) (NGC ID# 2247, PCGS# 1446)

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Auction Dates
January, 2005
12th-15th Wednesday-Saturday
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 11
Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
Page Views: 513

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Rasmussen Special Edition Catalog
This hard bound volume contains the magnificent Wes Rasmussen Large Cent Collection, formed by a former President of the Early American Coppers society which was auctioned at the 2005 Florida United Numismatic Auction. Reserve your copy of this remarkable volume for just $75 today.
Rasmussen Signed Limited Edition Catalog
A hard bound limited library edition of the Wes Rasmussen Collection Catalog, signed by Wes Rasmussen, Mark Borckardt, Greg Rohan, and Denis Loring, is available while supplies last. Only 100 produced. Reserve your copy of this remarkable limited edition signed volume for just $150 today.

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