Menu
Welcome Sign-In | Join Now
Sold for Sign-in or Join (free & quick) includes Buyer's Premium (BP) 

Description

Seldom-Seen AU50 1855 Wass Molitor Fifty

1855 $50 Wass Molitor Fifty Dollar AU50 NGC. K-9, R.5. Unassayed gold dust or nuggets were a poor medium of exchange in Gold Rush California in 1849, as they varied widely in their gold content. While many firms contemplated producing coinage, some had their equipment (dies and machinery) stolen on the way to California; others managed to produce a few patterns or near-unique pieces only before fading into the mysterious, half-remembered haze of history, such as the Diana Gambling House and the 1849 Cincinnati Mining & Trading Co.
The first firm to produce any significant quantity of circulating gold coins in California was Norris, Gregg & Norris in 1849, joined that same year by Moffat & Co., which produced assayed ingots and five and ten dollar gold pieces. Some of the issues of those early coiners, such as Baldwin & Co., Schultz & Co., and Dubosq & Co. were rightly or wrongly discredited through the March 1851 exposé of former-banker-turned-crusading-journalist James King of William, showing such pieces to range from a bit to several percentage points underweight compared to their nominal value. Today such pieces are extremely elusive, as most were either exported, melted down into the better-accepted issues of Augustus Humbert and the U.S. Assay Office, or else melted and recoined in "official" federal facilities, either in the early San Francisco Mint or another coinage facility.
Counts Samuel Wass and Agoston Molitor were relative late-comers to the coinage business in California, producing five, ten, and twenty dollar gold pieces in 1852, and twenties and round fifties in 1855, those last after the San Francisco Mint had officially opened and struck its first federal (and federal-resembling) gold coins. Like Moffat & Co. before them, their gold issues were well-accepted, and both men had metallurgical and mining experience before coming to the United States.
The present example, in AU50, is one that shows a few minor contact marks throughout that would be expected for 10 points of wear, but there are no overly distracting abrasions, and the piece possesses generous appeal. The attractive surfaces are bright yellow-gold, with some deeper reddish-gold around the devices. Interestingly, the reverse is rotated about 10 degrees counterclockwise from the obverse. Listed on page 371 of the 2009 Guide Book. Census: 1 in 50, 17 finer (6/08). (PCGS# 10363)

Service and Handling Description: Coins & Currency (view shipping information)

Sales Tax information  | NGC Coin Grading Guarantee  |  Terms and Conditions

Bidding Guidelines and Bid Increments

Glossary of Terms

Auction Info

Auction Dates
Jul-Aug, 2008
30th-3rd
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 4
Members Tracking: N/A
Page Views: 901

Buyer's Premium per Lot:
15% of the successful bid (minimum $9) per lot.

Heritage membership

941,227
bidder-members
$878,327,059
sold in the last year

Join Now - It's Free

VIEW BENEFITS
  1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
  2. Bid online
  3. Free Collector newsletter
  4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
  5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    winnings 

Consignments wanted

Only 2 days left to consign to the 2015 September 16 - 21 US Coins Signature Auction - Long Beach!

Learn about consigning with us

Very good selection of scarce material as well as some for the average collector.
J.S.,
Rochester, MN
View More Testimonials

HA.com receives more traffic than any other auction house website. To compare for yourself, visit: compete.com

Video tutorial

Getting the most out of search

Recent auctions

2015 July 9 - 12 Summer FUN US Coins Signature Auction - Orlando Summer FUN
2015 July 9 - 12 Summer FUN US Coins Signature Auction - Orlando Summer FUN
REALIZED $8,308,723
2015 April 9 - 14 CICF World Coins & Ancient Coins Signature Auction - Chicago
2015 April 9 - 14 CICF World Coins & Ancient Coins Signature Auction - Chicago
REALIZED $6,503,481
2015 April 22 - 28 CSNS Currency Signature Auction - Chicago
2015 April 22 - 28 CSNS Currency Signature Auction - Chicago
REALIZED $10,592,191

© 2015 Heritage Auctions | All Rights Reserved