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Description

Small to Medium Size 23-Ounce Justh & Hunter
Gold Ingot from the
S.S. Central America

Small to Medium Size Justh & Hunter Gold Ingot. CAGB-352. Q. David Bowers, in his A California Gold Rush History, offers general notes about the Justh & Hunter ingots recovered from the S.S. Central America, including two key observations. First, "Surfaces often irregular, particularly on the reverse." Second, "Some ingots from San Francisco [assay office] have part of the serial number, the last two digits, repeated on the reverse." Both are true in the case of this ingot, a small to medium-sized example in the Bowers scale.
All faces show considerable irregularities, with the top face surprising by showing the most irregularities of all. Through the valleys, the punched information from top to bottom: NO. 4341 / [arcing Justh & Hunter imprint] / 23.00 OZ / 890 FINE. / $423.15 [in 1857 terms].
Corner cuts at the upper right of the top face and its diagonal opposite; both corner cuts show rust stains, as does the bottom face, in and near the hollow from the ingot-casting process. This rust is prone to flaking, and appears to have done so within the plastic holder. As noted above, the digits 41 appear at the upper right part of the bottom face, a San Francisco office characteristic for Justh & Hunter ingots. The ingot measures 43 x 61 x 16 mm.
At just 23 ounces, this ingot is accessible to a variety of collectors and researchers, and the Justh & Hunter imprint also falls in a "sweet spot" of sorts, not so elusive as to be inaccessible, but at the same time it is not so broadly available as the Kellogg & Humbert ingots. In sum, it is a prize for the tasteful California gold collector.

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Auction Dates
February, 2010
3rd-7th
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 9
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