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This Week in Coin News
||July 27, 2013
The 'King of American Coins' anchors
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There is no other coin in American numismatics with as storied and
famous a history as the Class I 1804 dollar, of which only eight
exist, and Heritage Auctions will be offering
the Mickley-Hawn-Queller specimen of the 1804 $1, graded PR62 by
both PCGS and NGC, from The Greensboro Collection, Part
IV, as the lead lot in its Platinum Night event on Friday, Aug.
9, the centerpiece of the company's Aug. 8-10
U.S. Coins Signature® Auction in Rosemont, IL.
The 1804 dollar is the undisputed King of American coins, and it
is always an event when one of them shows up for auction. It's the
rare chance for a top collector to add their name, or the name of
their collection, to a history that will never diminish in
importance. It is, in many ways, numismatic immortality for whoever
comes out on top, and we expect there will be many vying for that
It is widely believed that the Class I 1804 dollar was not
minted until about 1834, when the State Department ordered special
sets of the coins struck specifically for diplomatic purposes.
Records indicated that several of the Class II and Class III 1804
silver dollars were minted after that. In fact, Mint records from
1804 indicated a delivery figure of 19,570 silver dollars, though
it is commonly held in numismatic circles that these were all
leftover coins dated 1803.
Collectors will also be eagerly anticipating the appearance of
1795 $10 13 Leaves MS65 NGC, BD-5, the finest known example of
this rare die pairing, previously owned by super-collector Louis E.
Among all the auction appearances that 1795 $10 pieces have made
at Heritage, almost 200 in all, there has never been an MS65
example among them. The highest grade 1795 BD-5 $10 Heritage has
offered was graded MS61, while we have only offered six MS64
specimens of any die pairing for the date in previous auctions.
This is an unprecedented opportunity for an advanced collector to
obtain the finest known 1795 BD-5 eagle.
The collective third highlight of Platinum Night comes in the
form of a trio of proof Seated Quarters from The Greensboro
Collection, Part IV: An
1850 Seated quarter, PR68 NGC, an
1853 Arrows and Rays quarter, PR66 Cameo NGC and an
1855-S Arrows quarter, PR64 NGC, CAC. These remarkable proof
coins date to before the general availability of proofs in 1858,
with the 1855-S being especially distinctive, as it was struck in
San Francisco, a branch mint, instead of Philadelphia.
Auction highlights continue with
a 1921-S "Zerbe" Morgan dollar, SP65 PCGS, CAC, one of just
four or five of the type known. These coins were custom-made for
Farran Zerbe, who had promoted the Peace dollar, when he learned
proofs of the new design would not be struck in 1921 along with an
1851 Schultz & Co. $5, K-1 variety, AU53 PCGS, CAC, a
rarely offered private coin from early in California's statehood,
made by the short-lived partnership of Schulz & Co. Fewer than
two dozen examples of these coins are known and this specimen was
previously owned by Eliasberg.
Additional highlights of this auction include, but are not
Bidding for Platinum Night continues through August 8 on
HA.com/coins and August 9 through Heritage Live!®. Live
sessions for other items in this auction extend from August 8
through August 10.
Seldom Seen Selections: The Very Rare
Schultz & Co Five Dollar
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In the hectic atmosphere of the California Gold Rush, many
partnerships were made and broken in a matter of months. Some have
been immortalized, as through the discovery of the S.S. Central
America treasure, while others remain obscure. Though it is not
as mystery-shrouded as, for example, the Cincinnati Mining &
Trading Co., the firm of Schultz &. Co. is remarkably enigmatic
for a central player in the field of private California gold
It is little-known, except perhaps among devotees of California
gold, that many of the firms who issued private coinage did not
make their own dies. While the "Moffat complex" (Moffat, Humbert,
U.S. Assay Office, etc.) did so, other firms turned to Schultz
& Co., which began in September or October 1850 not as an
assaying firm but a brass foundry. As often was the case with
partnerships during the California Gold Rush, there was a
significant difference in the principals' ages and what they
brought to the firm. Judge G.W. Schultz, today the more obscure
figure, had the reputation and financial capital to set up the
foundry. He tapped William T. Garratt, a youth in his early
twenties from Cincinnati who had learned metalworking in family
trade, to handle the back end of the business.
Said business proved enormously profitable for Schultz & Co.
Garratt later recounted, in a dictated statement published by Edgar
Holmes Adams in Private Gold Coinage of California, 1849-55, Its
History and Its Issues:
"We made a great many dies for private coining. Albert Küner,
who is still in business here, would do the engraving and I the
turning — that is, the machine-work on the dies — for which at the
time we would get $100 per day per man on that special job.
"After that, Shultz [sic] took a notion to go into coining for
Burgoyne & Co. and Argienti & Co. who were bankers here at
that time. They would buy the dust and we would do the coining. We
ran for a while, and then Shultz and I separated, he taking the
coining establishment and I the foundry..."
It is to be noted that spellings of names often were
inconsistent at the time, with "Schultz" and "Shultz" given by
different sources. The spelling "Shults" on the coinage itself,
however, is singular and almost certainly an error on the part of
Mr. Küner, a Bavarian by birth whose long career included a brief
stint engraving for Charles Lewis Tiffany (of Tiffany & Co.
fame) and the first version of California's Great Seal. Garratt
himself was not immune to misspellings, being listed as "Garrett"
in sundry places.
An assay by Augustus Humbert showed that the Schultz & Co.
five dollar coins, far from being "Pure California Gold" as the
reverse legend proclaimed, were alloyed with copper (Garratt gave
the figure at 10%, "just enough to make the coin hard enough to
wear"), and further, underweight; when word spread, the coins'
reputation went to tatters, and a more favorable assessment made at
the Philadelphia Mint by William E. DuBois in 1851 came too late.
Many of the Schultz & Co. coins were destroyed, and Schultz's
coining operation was halted by the California Legislature's
prohibition on the striking of private gold coinage on April 21,
As noted above, the Schultz & Co. firm had dissolved the
same month, and while Judge Schultz was left with a worthless
coining operation, William T. Garratt still had the foundry, his
knowledge, and his business connections. Garratt persevered through
the Great Fire that swept through San Francisco in early May 1851
and several other business-destroying disasters to establish W.T.
Garratt & Co., a foundry whose bells were installed in
churches, fire stations, and schools all around California both
before and after his death in 1890.
The bells bearing Garratt's name today are far more numerous
than the coins bearing Schultz's. None of the rumored ten dollar
coins by the same firm ever have shown up, and as for the five
dollar pieces, the cataloger for The Louis E. Eliasberg, Sr.
Collection, source of the present piece, gave a census of 15,
whereas Heritage suggested 10 to 12 pieces in all grades when it
offered an NCS AU Details example as part of The Great Western
Collection of Territorial Gold in July 2005. NGC has only two
entries in its Census Report, an AU53 and an MS62, while the
10 PCGS Population Report coins range from VF20 to AU53, the
latter of which we are pleased to be able to offer at Platinum
Night in our
2013 August 8-10 US Coins Signature Auction in Rosemont,
Originally listed as "EF-45 to AU-50" in the Eliasberg Sale (May
1996), this coin's green-label PCGS holder gives a grade of AU53,
with CAC reaffirming that value by a green sticker. The dies are an
early state without the cud over GOLD on the reverse.
Yellow-to-orange surfaces retain considerable luster, though the
softly struck figure of Liberty shows spots of plain wear on the
nose and brow, as does the eagle on head and claws. Light abrasions
should prove no object even to a discerning collector of California
gold, so rare is this issue and so infrequent the offerings. Forget
the historical prices and ready your best bet. The next opportunity
to own a Schultz five dollar so fine may not come again for
Website Tips: The Way to the Auction
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1. Click on Auction Results Archives from the Heritage Coins
home page, upper left side.
2. Click on the "Sell" tab, then go to the section containing
information exclusively for Heritage members:
3. If you're looking through items we're currently offering,
just perform your search normally, adding criteria as you see fit.
At the top, you will see two tabs — one for items currently up for
auction, and the other for the archives. At any time, you can
switch between one and the other, simply by clicking on the
appropriate tab — and every one of your search criteria will be
The ten most valuable Central American coins to sell in Heritage
Guatemala: Carlos III gold 8 Escudos 1768-G, KM31, Cal. 666,
AU. Realized $103,500
Central American Republic gold 8 Escudos 1828F-CR, KM17, MS63
NGC. Realized $48,875
Guatemala: Ferdinand VI gold 8 Escudos 1754G-J, KM7, Calico 551,
XF45 NGC. Realized $37,375
Costa Rica: Republic. Gold 20 Pesos 1873, KM119, FR-17, UNC.
Guatemala: Ferdinand VI gold 8 Escudos 1757G-J, KM21, Fr-6, AU58
NGC. Realized $29,375
Guatemala: Republic gold 20 Pesos 1878 F, KM199, Fr-44, MS61
NGC. Realized $29,375
Central American Republic gold 4 Escudos 1835-F CR, KM16, AU58
NGC. Realized $25,850
Guatemala: Ferdinand VII gold 8 Escudos 1817-M, KM71, AU55 NGC.
Central American Republic gold 4 Escudos 1837E-CR with Star
Counterstamp, KM29, XF45 NGC. Realized $25,300
Central American Republic gold 4 Escudos 1828-F CR, KM16, AU58
PCGS. Realized $23,500
Do you have a suggestion for a future top ten list?
Send it to us!
Coin Buyer Wanted - Dallas and New York
Heritage Auctions is seeking talented numismatists with a broad
range of expertise to join our Dallas and New York offices. If you
have a good working knowledge base of U S. coins and currency and
are comfortable dealing with the public, we have openings for
permanent positions as a buyer. Duties will include dealing with
walk-in clients, evaluating and purchasing coins and currency,
working local coin shows, and accepting Auction consignments. Pay
will be commensurate with numismatic experience.
If you are interested in these positions, please contact
Reduced Auction Commissions When You Resell Your
When you win any lot worth with a hammer price of $1,000 or more
(or $2,500 for Art and Nature & Science lots), you will receive
a coupon that entitles you (or your heirs) to re-consign that lot
to Heritage at a reduced seller's commission. Selling through
Heritage is a convenient and hassle free way to maximize your
out why). Maybe you'll need to make room in your collection for
something better, perhaps your collecting tastes will change, or
maybe it will be your heirs that benefit; but be sure to save the
coupon, which could be worth hundreds or thousands of dollars.
- Coins: 0% Seller's Commission for all items $1K or
- Comics: 50% of the usual Seller's Commission for all
items between $1K & $10K, and 0% for items $10K and over.
- All Other Categories: 50% of the usual Seller's
Commission for everything else over $1K ($2,500 for Art &
Save on NumisMedia Guides through Heritage
As the fastest growing American-based auction house, financially
rock-solid Heritage Auctions continues to grow and seek the best
talent in the industry. If you are a specialist or have strong
general collectibles knowledge, we want to hear from you. These
specialists will, in some cases, head new departments and in others
will enhance existing department expertise. We have positions open
at our headquarters in Dallas as well as at our new
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Manhattan and Beverly Hills.
Heritage is seeking to hire the world's best specialists in
the following categories:
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If you are interested and feel you have the qualifications we
seek, please email your resume and salary history to
We are also seeking to fill the following corporate
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If you are interested in applying for one of these Corporate
The Sam Snead Collection tees off
Heritage's 'Platinum Night' Auction at the Chicago National Sports
With his ever-present straw hat and the prettiest swing in
the game's history, Sam Snead carved his name into golf's Mount
Rushmore as one of the most decorated athletes in American sports
history. Now, for the first time, his legions of fans have an
opportunity to compete for
treasures from The Sam Snead Collection, the opening 14
Heritage Auctions "Platinum Night" event. The auction will
conclude with live bidding, on Thursday, Aug. 1, at the Chicago
National Sports Collectors Convention.
"It's unquestionably the most significant personal golf
collection ever to reach the hobby's auction block," said Chris
Ivy, Director of Heritage Sports Collectibles. "This Platinum Night
will feature several of the finest pieces from Snead's collection,
notably trophies earned for wins at the Masters and the British
Open, game used clubs, and even Snead's Hall of Fame plaque."
All lots are accompanied by a letter of provenance from Snead's
son, Jack, who has consigned the collection.
space with Snead in both the American sports pantheon and this
"Platinum Night" auction is the iconic New York Yankees duo of
Babe Ruth and
Lou Gehrig, each of whom supply a game worn cap (two,
in fact, for the Babe) to the event.
An extraordinary example of a Babe Ruth game used bat, dating
to the opening years of Yankee Stadium, will likewise take a turn
on the block.
Perhaps the most notable game-used bat in the auction is one
utilized by a man whose physical stature and baseball career rate
as the shortest in Major League history. Saved by his family for 62
making its hobby debut is the tiny lumber carried to the plate by
little person Eddie Gaedel, whose three-foot seven inch height
earned him a four-pitch walk and immortality in the lighter side of
baseball history on Aug. 19, 1951 at Sportsman's Park in St.
will further burnish Heritage's reputation as the leading house for
legendary sports artist LeRoy Neiman with the presentation of three
original works in this event, each featuring a superstar athlete
from the recently deceased painter's New York City hometown: A
six-figure result is expected for his dazzling
1973 portrait of Babe Ruth at the plate, with
images of a rookie Joe Namath and his
running back Emerson Boozer trailing close behind.
Game worn jerseys figure prominently into the "Platinum Night"
mix, with all four major American team sports well-represented.
The heartbreaking story recounted in the classic film "Brian's
Song" is recalled with
a rare Chicago Bears jersey worn by Brian Piccolo and a legend
on the rise is celebrated by
a full uniform worn in collegiate action by Julius "Dr. J"
Frank Robinson bring Cooperstown-quality jerseys into play, and
the sweater worn by Bob Nystrom as he netted the 1980 Stanley
Cup-winning goal for the New York Islanders will likewise go to
the highest bidder on Aug. 1.
Transitioning from the thrill of victory to the agony of defeat,
the auction supplies the debut hobby appearance
of the gloves Roberto Duran was wearing as he registered the most
famous surrender in boxing history against Sugar Ray Leonard in the
unforgettable 1980 "No Mas" fight.
The fabled "Black Swamp Find" of 1910 E98 candy card continues
to shine with
the highest graded specimens on the SGC registry, and a
1927 New York Yankees team signed photo will likewise tempt
More information about Sports auctions.
Heritage Auctions / bid@HA.com / 3500 Maple Ave / Dallas, Texas 75219 /
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