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    1916 Walking Liberty Half Pattern, PR63
    Judd-1991, Tied for Finest Graded
    Only Four Exist, Ex: Farouk-Kaplan

    1916 50C Walking Liberty Half Dollar, Judd-1991 (formerly Judd-1798), Pollock-2056, High R.7, PR63 PCGS. Silver, reeded edge. This Select proof is certified in a green-label PCGS holder and is tied for the finest known with another example in the same grade at PCGS, a coin that we handled in 2008 (see #4 below). Both the present reflective example and the #4 mattelike example are provenanced to the eccentric playboy King Farouk of Egypt, although their earlier pedigrees are unknown.

    Remarkably, the present piece also comes with a printed kraft coin envelope printed "Sol Kaplan / 413 Race St. / Cincinnati" on the back, and one the front is printed "From the / Palace Collection / Cairo, Egypt." Clearly dealer Sol Kaplan had these envelopes custom-printed for his purchases (and sales) from the famed Farouk collection. Handwritten on the envelope is "1916 J-1798 Half Dol" (with "Quarter" struck through). At bottom is handwritten #2028, the lot number from the Palace Collection sale.

    Judd-1991 (formerly Judd-1798) is believed to be the earliest among the six varieties of pattern 1916 Walking Liberty half dollars, per recent research by Roger Burdette. The major devices are similar to their adopted counterparts but are somewhat smaller in scale. The date, IN GOD WE TRUST, and the motto are all in thin, delicate type. HALF DOLLAR is on the upper reverse instead of the reverse exergue, and E PLURIBUS UNUM is on the lower reverse instead of its usual position above the pine sapling. Unlike Judd-1992, LIBERTY is not fixed above the motto, but is distributed across the upper obverse border. No AW monogram is present. Burdette notes in Renaissance of American Coinage 1916-1921 that the "first coins struck had normal fields, then the dies were polished to create a 'burnished' or polished appearance."

    This proof pattern was one of the later burnished or polished coins. It shows light but extensive field hairlines from a past cleaning but has retoned nicely with light gold and pinkish hues and somewhat subdued but still noticeable reflectivity on both sides. The toning deepens a bit at the bottom reverse into pinkish-orange with a hint of ice-blue, a beautiful coin and a beautiful design. The proof strike brings up a wealth of detail that is simply absent on business strikes of the day.

    This opportunity to acquire one of the finest known Walking Liberty half patterns of this design will not be lost on either pattern collectors or advanced specialists in the regular series.

    1916 Judd-1991 (e: Judd-1798) Pattern Half Dollar Roster
    Only four examples of Judd-1991 are currently known. The roster is expanded from that available on
    1. Proof. Smithsonian.
    2. PR61 PCGS. King Farouk?; William Mitkoff; sold to James Bennett Pryor (4/1974); Pryor Collection (Bowers and Merena, 1/1996), lot 330.
    3. PR63 PCGS. King Farouk; Farouk Palace Sale (Sotheby's, 2/1954), part of lot 2028; Sol Kaplan ; unknown intermediaries; Superior (10/1990), lot 1889; Baltimore '93 Auction (Superior, 7/1993), lot 470. The present specimen. Reflective surfaces, probably from the burnishing or polishing noted above as well as a later cleaning.
    4. PR63 PCGS. Robert Marks Collection, Part II (American Auction Association, 11/1972), lot 1081; Austin Collection (Bowers and Ruddy, 6/1974), lot 1113; Morris Evans Collection (Bowers and Merena, 8/1998), lot 2101; Americana Sale (Stack's, 1/2004), lot 3552; Madison Collection / FUN Signature (Heritage 1/2008), lot 3505. Deeply mattelike surfaces.
    From The Klamath Mountain Collection, Part II.

    Coin Index Numbers: (NGC ID# 2AMW, PCGS# 62295)

    View all of [The Klamath Mountain Collection, Part II ]

    View Certification Details from PCGS

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    January, 2014
    8th-12th Wednesday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 13
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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