Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice

Search Press Release Archive

Press Release - March 26, 2018

Curious Hoard of 1883 NO CENTS Liberty Nickels Offered at CSNS by Heritage Auctions

Hidden for more than a century, nearly 300 coins are presented as one lot April 25-30

Heritage Auctions
DALLAS, Texas (March 26, 2018) — A historic hoard of nearly 300 1883 NO CENTS Liberty nickels — hidden for more than a century in a simple canvas sack — may prove irresistible for collectors seeking one of the most fascinating and curious discoveries in modern numismatics. Heritage Auctions is offering the entire hoard of 297 coins (and the sack, too) as a single lot in the firm's U.S. Coins Auction during the Central States Numismatic Society Convention April 25-30 in Chicago.

"The consignor wants to present the cache as it was originally discovered: Inside the original canvas sack which was found untouched since the late 1880s," said Greg Rohan, President of Heritage Auctions. "Most of the coins grade Uncirculated to Choice Uncirculated."

The hoard is the numismatic stuff of dreams. The coins were found stashed in an age-stained canvas sack for fishing weights made by the New York Lead Company. Cinched shut by a simple drawstring, the bag retained a hand-written note dated Oct. 21, 1889. The numismatic newspaper Coin World touted the discovery in 2009 when the sack full of coins was purchased at a small New England auction.

The 1883 NO CENTS nickel quickly became a popular collectible shortly after they were issued. Chief Engraver Charles E. Barber designed the undenominated coin to depict a left-facing bust of Lady Liberty surrounded by stars. The reverse features a bold Roman numeral V inside a laurel wreath surrounded by the words UNITED STATES OF AMERICA and E PLURIBUS UNUM. Later that same year, the Mint added the word CENTS to the reverse after it learned scoundrels were gold plating the coin to pass them off as five dollar gold pieces.

Barber's original design appeared 30 years later on what would become five of the most sought-after coins in numismatic history. A Mint employee secretly produced five Liberty Head nickels marked 1913. The famously rare coins are now worth millions. Heritage Auctions sold one of the five 1913 Liberty Head nickels for more than $3.7 million.

"One could say the 1883 NO CENTS Liberty nickel is responsible for one of the most fascinating chapters in numismatics," Rohan said. "Ironically, the hoard we're offering in April adds one more page to the coin's curious history."

As the official auctioneer, Heritage Auctions will offer the hoard of nearly 300 1883 NO CENTS Liberty nickels in its U.S. Coins Auction April 25-30 during the Central States Numismatic Society annual convention. Online bidding opens April 6 on HA.com/1274 and a full preview of the auction's lots is April 24-28 at the Renaissance Schaumburg Convention Center Hotel, 1551 North Thoreau Drive, Schaumburg, IL.

Heritage Auctions is the largest fine art and collectibles auction house founded in the United States, and the world's largest collectibles auctioneer. Heritage maintains offices in New York, Dallas, Beverly Hills, San Francisco, Chicago, Palm Beach, London, Paris, Geneva, Amsterdam and Hong Kong.

The Internet's most popular auction-house website, HA.com, has over one million registered bidder-members and searchable free archives of four million past auction records with prices realized, descriptions and enlargeable photos. Reproduction rights routinely granted to media for photo credit.


Eric Bradley, Public Relations Director
214-409-1871; EricB@HA.com

Heritage membership

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 
Consign now
  • Cash Advances
  • More Bidders
  • Trusted Experts
  • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
Only 2 days left to consign to the 2018 September 5 - 10 Long Beach Expo US Coins Signature Auction - Long Beach!

Learn about consigning with us

The outcome of the auction far exceeded my best hopes and would not likely have been as successful with out your sound advice on where to present the coin and how best to set the reserve. Throughout the process your availability , support and knowledge were exceptional.
Mike K.,
Mahpopac, NY
View More Testimonials

HA.com receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source: Similarweb.com)