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    1913-S Barber Quarter, MS67
    Low-Mintage Key
    Ex: Emery-Nichols-Duckor

    1913-S 25C MS67 PCGS. CAC. Wisps of gold and lilac toning add to the overall eye appeal of this incredible Superb Gem 1913-S Barber quarter. The strike is crisp overall despite slight weakness on stars 3 and 11, and similar weakness on the right (facing) claw. Otherwise, all elements are bold. Most of the Mint State 1913-S quarters on the market today came from original rolls and are brilliant. Only those few that have been in longtime cabinets, such as this piece, have acquired the delicate original toning that connoisseurs appreciate so much.

    Population Data (5/14): PCGS has graded three submissions in MS67 and a single MS68 finer. NGC has certified four MS67, one MS67 , two MS67+, and none numerically finer.

    Heritage Commentary: The 1913-S is one of three key dates in the Barber quarter series. The issue had a mintage of just 40,000 coins. Save for the exception of a handful of coins that collectors ordered from the Mint, the entire production went into circulation and saw extensive use in commerce. The low grade of nearly all survivors is a testament to their use. Consider that the average PCGS certified grade of 1,040 submissions is just 11, and that average grade tends towards the higher numbers due to resubmission of better-grade pieces. PCGS has only certified 62 grading events, including resubmissions, in all Mint State grades.

    Samuel Benton Emery was born in Sanford, Maine, on October 15, 1848, and died in Melrose, Massachusetts, on July 4, 1914. A New England banker, Emery began collecting at an early age and was one of the first buyers of Augustus Heaton's book Mint Marks. In the introduction to the Bowers and Merena catalog of the Emery and Nichols Collections, Dave Bowers wrote: "Intending that his collection would live after him, Mr. Emery prepared several handwritten documents 'to whom it may concern' giving instructions for continuing the collection by making regular purchases of Proof and other coins each year from the Mint, how to transact with dealers and other advice."

    The heir to the Emery Collection was his son-in-law, Walter Prescott Nichols (1889-1941), who apparently continued the collection as Emery desired. Nichols was a certified public accountant educated at Northeastern University. He was officially a resident of Melrose, Massachusetts, but maintained an additional residence in Maine. His obituary indicates that he was a deputy sheriff for York County, Maine, and he was also active in distribution of the York County, Maine commemorative half dollars.

    It seems that Emery probably acquired the present 1913-S quarter directly from the San Francisco Mint shortly before his death, for it is carried in Walter Nichols' notebook at a cost of 30 cents. The coin later passed to legendary collector Dr. Steven Duckor, where it was a highlight of his remarkable quarter collection, which Heritage Auctions offered in August 2009.

    Consignor Commentary: The Emory-Nichols coin, ex-Duckor. Superb in all respects. The only anomalies worth mentioning are a light die break on the obverse between the lower loop of the three and the bust, and a dark toning spot in the dentils on the reverse at 11:30. Otherwise a full-blown Superb Gem, and among the finest known.

    Provenance: S. Benton Emery, probably purchased directly from the San Francisco Mint; Walter P. Nichols; Nichols Estate (Bowers and Merena, 11/1984), lot 637; Dr. Steven Duckor; Los Angeles Signature (Heritage, 8/2009), lot 1106, realized $60,375; Joseph O'Connor; purchased by present consignor in 2009.(Registry values: N7079) (NGC ID# 23ZW, PCGS# 5666)

    Weight: 6.25 grams

    Metal: 90% Silver, 10% Copper

    Learn more at the Newman Numismatic Portal at Washington University in St. Louis.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2014
    23rd Monday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 17
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 957

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