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Extraordinary 1845 Dime, PR66
From the Pittman Collection

1845 10C PR66 NGC. Ex: Pittman-Kaufman. The 1845 PR66 dime in this lot comes out of the John Jay Pittman collection, and was included in a complete 1845 proof set. It is worthwhile repeating David Akers' description of this sensational coin:

"This is an absolutely extraordinary coin, possibly the finest known Proof dime of this date and one of the highest quality proof Liberty Seated dimes of the decade. The colors in the toning are exceptional, blending light to medium reddish-gold with violet and electric-blue. ... I can only say that no coin in the entire Pittman Collection surpasses it (and the collection obviously encompasses some of the most beautifully toned Proof coins in existence).

"With the exception of the 1841, the 1845 is at least as rare as any other Proof Dime of the 1840's; only 5 or 6 Proofs exist. Like the Half dime, this Dime was purchased by JJP from the Menjou sale, 6/15/50, Lot 198, for $37. Star, Lovejoy, and Eliasberg had Proofs of this date; Norweb, Garrett and James Stack did not. The National Numismatic collection in the Smithsonian Institution also has an example. That accounts for just five pieces, but it is always possible that one or two others may exist."

In addition to the beautiful toning aptly described by Akers, the Kaufman piece is exquisitely struck throughout all of the design elements, leaving no areas with even a hint of softness. Moreover, each side displays immaculate preservation. A tiny as-made indentation between star 1 and the rock, a faint mark on the right (left facing) breast, and another above the upper right corner of the shield might help identify the coin for future catalogers. In sum, the aesthetic appeal and technical quality of this coin are beyond further mention.

Four proof 1845 dimes have been certified to date, all by NGC. These include one PR65, a PR65 Cameo, a PR66 (the present Pittman-Kaufman piece), and a PR67.

The following roster of 1845 proof dimes begins with the Pittman-Kaufman Premium Gem proof:

1. PR66 NGC. The Kaufman specimen. Menjou Collection (Numismatic Gallery, 6/1950), lot 198; John Jay Pittman (David Akers, 5/1998), lot 1711, as part of a complete 1845 proof set, the Seated Liberty coins kept intact by Phil Kaufman.

2. PR65 Cameo NGC. Matthew A. Stickney (Henry Chapman, 6/1907); J.M. Clapp; Clapp Estate (1942); Louis E. Eliasberg, Sr.; Eliasberg Estate (Bowers and Merena, 5/1996), lot 1131; Richmond Collection (David Lawrence, 3/2005), lot 1240; Heritage (1/2006), lot 3130; Stack's (3/2007), lot 538; Stack's (8/2007), lot 435.

3. PR65 Cameo NGC. Bowers and Merena (10/2006), lot 5307.

4. PR65 NGC. New England (7/1978), lot 466; Kam Ahwash (9/1978); Lovejoy Collection (Stack's, 10/1990), lot 230; Phil Kaufman; Bowers and Merena (1/1999), lot 1084; Bowers and Merena (8/1999), lot 106.

5. PR65. Starr Collection (Stack's, 10/1992), lot 362.

6. Proof. Smithsonian Institution.

Additional Examples:

A. Proof.
Stack's (2/1975)

B. Proof. Virgil Brand; Landau Collection (New Netherlands, 52nd Sale, 12/1958), lot 448.
From The Phil Kaufman Collection of Early Seated Proof Sets, Part Two. (NGC ID# 23BZ, PCGS# 4732)

View all of [The Phil Kaufman Collection of Early Seated Proof Sets, Part Two ]

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Auction Dates
January, 2008
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 7
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