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    Legendary 1786 New Jersey Immunis Columbia, MS62 Brown PCGS

    1786 COPPER New Jersey Immunis Columbia MS62 Brown PCGS. Crosby Pl. VII, 17; Fig. 58; Maris 3-C, Breen-1129, High R.6. The PCGS insert incorrectly describes this piece as "Eagle Reverse," a reference to the extremely rare Breen-1135. The first Immunis Columbia varieties were produced by George Wyon, III, at his mint in Birmingham, England. Wyon had earlier coined the well known Nova Constellatio pieces (Breen-1107 to 1114) and later paired Nova Constellatio reverses with a 1785 Immunis Columbia obverse to strike a series of very rare patterns (Breen-1117 to 1122.) Breen credits Walter Mould and George Wyon's teenaged son, Thomas Wyon, with the dies for the 1786 Immunis Columbia and its two reverses, the unique Breen-1128 Confederatio and the present Breen-1129 variety. Mould must have taken the reverse die with him from Birmingham to America, since it was used with New Jersey obverses to coin Maris 6-C and the extremely rare Maris 5-C, Maris 7-C, and Maris 8 1/2-C. Presumably, the "C" reverse was the inspiration for the reverse of the New Jersey series. Immunis Columbia coppers were also produced from different dies by James Atlee in New York or New Jersey, paired with a large eagle reverse similar to that used by John Bailey on the 1787 Excelsior coppers (Breen-978 to 980). Maris 3-C is usually referred to as the New Jersey Immunis Columbia, technically inaccurate since at the time of its production, the Birmingham coiners may not have known of the pending New Jersey coinage. These rare pieces are considered patterns, however, since the Birmingham Mint was trying to secure American confederation or state contracts.
    The present lot is a magnificent medium brown example of the New Jersey Immunis. The surfaces are uncommonly smooth, and a thin mark to the shield after the E in E PLURIBUS UNUM is mentioned solely for pedigree purposes. Finer than the Roper or Garrett specimens, which had rim dings or areas of porosity, and also finer than the second of Ford's two pieces. The strike is somewhat soft in the centers, perhaps due to improperly hardened dies, but the border elements are fully struck, and most of the device details are clear. Heritage has never before offered an example of Maris 3-C, and the opportunity to secure a Mint State example is fleeting. Listed on page 54 of the 2007 Guide Book.

    Coin Index Numbers: (NGC ID# BFJK, PCGS# 861)

    View Certification Details from PCGS

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    May, 2007
    9th-12th Wednesday-Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 21
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 5,074

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    We also followed the bidding online yesterday here in Salt Lake for the other 3 coins - great fun. Prices realized met or exceeded our expectations.
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