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REVISITING THE DR. JOHN E. WILKISON COLLECTION OF GOLD U.S. PATTERNS, Part VIII – 1907

Posted on November 28, 2018 by No Comments

This is the final chapter in the story of Dr. John E. Wilkison’s fabulous collection of gold U.S. Pattern Coins.  In this installment, we’ll take a look at the four 1907-dated Patterns in the good Doctor’s collection, all of which were designed by Augustus Saint-Gaudens.  They rank as some of the most popular of all U.S. coinage designs.  In particular, the 1907 Indian Head $20 pattern is the flagship coin for the PCGS CoinFacts site and it is quite possibly the most valuable, collectible U.S. coin in existence.

Untitled
1907 $10 Indian, Wire Edge, With Periods, Judd 1901 (formerly Judd 1774), Pollock 1995, Gold, Ornamented Edge of 46 Stars
PCGS MS67+
This is not the Wilkison coin, but is included here as a representative example of the type.  The Wilkison example had some distinctive toning patterns, but I have been unable to tie it to any modern appearances.  It is possible that Wilkison’s coin has been conserved and is no longer identifiable as being from the his Collection.

Jud 1774 is one of the most plentiful of all the U.S. gold patterns, but it is still rare and highly desirable.  It is known as the Wire edge because of the sharp rim where the flat border meets the edge.  Mint officials complained that the coins could not be stacked, so Saint-Gaudens made changes to the design which resulted in the next Pattern in the Wilkison Collection — the 1907 “Rolled Edge” $10.

Pedigree: Charlie Green (Chicago coin dealer), sold privately in 1942 for $125 – Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection. Subsequent pedigree unknown.

Untitled
1907 $10 Indian, Rolled Edge, Judd 1903 (formerly Judd 1775), Gold, Ornamented Edge of 46 Stars
PCGS PR67

This is also not the Wilkison coin, which had toning spots which do not match any known examples in the “modern” era.  A third possibility is that both the Judd 1901 and the Judd 1903 from the Wilkison Collection are holed up in some unknown collection.

Judd 1903 was an intermediate step between Judd 1901 and the regular issue design that was eventually made for circulation.  Judd 1903 is known as the “Rolled Edge” because of the rounded border on both sides — an improvement over the failed Wire Edge coins.  In fact, the Mint produced large quantities of Judd 1903, but before they were released into circulation, a decision was made to modify the design even more.  The entire mintage — except for an estimated 50 examples — was destroyed.

Pedigree: Charlie Green (Chicago coin dealer), sold privately in 1942 for $125 – Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection. Subsequent pedigree unknown.

Untitled
1907 $20 Judd 1905 (formerly Judd 1776), Pollock 1998, Gold, Lettered Edge
Raw Superb Gem Proof 67+
Image courtesy of the late David Akers

Judd 1905 (more popularly known by its previous and more numismatically significant moniker, Judd 1776) is one of the greatest of Augustus Saint-Gaudens many masterpieces.  It combines the Indian Head obverse design with a flying eagle reverse, all in the large-diameter format of a $20 gold piece.  It is unique.  It is remarkable.  It is hidden away in a specialized collection of $2o gold pieces, where it is likely to stay.  Rumored enticements of $10-15 million (and possibly more) have failed to pry it from the current owner’s hands.  Those of us who were around when the Wilkison Patterns came onto the market remember this coin with special reverence.  There is no other coin like it.

Pedigree: Charles E. Barber (Chief Engraver of the U.S. Mint in 1907), sold privately to the following) – Waldo C. Newcomer Collection, offered on 113/1932 to Wayte Raymond on consignment for $10,000 but ultimately returned to Newcomer – Edgar H. Adams, who received the coin on consignment and who offered it to John Work Garrett for $10,00 but was rejected; the coin was then offered to F.C.C. Boyd, who purchased it sometime after 9/11/1933 – F.C.C. Boyd’s widow, sold privately for $1,500 – Numismatic Gallery (Abe Kosoff and Abner Kreisberg), sold privately for slightly less than $10,000 – King Farouk of Egypt – Sotheby’s “Palace Collection”, 1,200 Egyptian Pounds (approximately 3,444 – Abe Kosoff, sold in 1956 for $10,000 – Dr. J.E. Wilkison, who sold his collection intact in 1973 – Paramount, traded privately – A-Mark Financial, sold privately in 1979 for $500,000 – Julian Leidman – Bowers & Ruddy 8/1981:2434, $475,000 – Paramount 7/1984:542 (as Raw Superb Gem Proof 67+), $467,500 – Hancock & Harwell, sold privately for a “mid-six figure price” – Northeast Collector

Untitled
1907 $20 Ultra High Relief, J-1909 (formerly J-1778), Lettered Edge, Edge of 1907 (E*PLURIBUS*UNUM**********)
PCGS PR69

Judd 1909 is one of the earliest prototypes of Saint-Gaudens striding Liberty $20 gold pieces.  The high-relief detail is much more dimensional and impressive than anything ultimately designed for circulation.  It is so medallic in appearance and it required so many strikes from the dies to bring up the full details, that it was never a realistic option for regular coinage.  But what an impressive coin it is.  The estimated mintage of this Judd number ranges from 13 to 22, but the lower number is incorrect because we know of 17 demonstrably different examples.  The last auction appearance of any Judd 1909 happens to be of this very same example.  Though it sold for $2,760,000 in 2012, it failed to sell in its 2015 reappearance.

Pedigree: James Kelly 8/1956:1773, $9,250 – Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection, sold intact in 9/1973 – A-Mark – Paramount “Auction ‘80” 8/1980:977, $230,000 – Ed Trompeter Collection – Phillip Morse Collection – Heritage 11/2005:6522, $2,990,000 – Steve Contursi and Don Kagin (per David Stone) – Stack’s/Bowers 6/2012:4438, $2,760,000 – Stack’s/Bowers 5/2015:93, not sold

 

Thus ends our review of the remarkable gold Patterns from the Dr. Wilkison Collection.  Under normal circumstances, we might say that it would be impossible to accomplish such an impressive collecting feat.  However, we point out again that Mr. Simpson is challenging Dr. Wilkison and may already have surpassed him.  However, that’s a whole ‘nother blog series and for now we’ll let Dr. Wilkison rest on his laurels.

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REVISITING THE DR. JOHN E. WILKISON COLLECTION OF GOLD U.S. PATTERNS, Part VII – 1878 to 1879

Posted on August 20, 2018 by No Comments

This is one of the more exciting installments of this series because it centers around Dr. John E. Wilkison’s “Stellas” of 1879 and 1879. It includes not only all four year/style combinations of the $4 Stellas but the Quintuple Stella of 1879, as well. These are among the most famous and instantly recognizable of all U.S. gold patterns.

156882
1879 $4 Flowing Hair “Stella”, Judd 1635, Pollock 1833, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR67DCAM
This was not the Wilkison coin, but is included here as a representative example of the type

A little-known (or perhaps forgotten) fact about the Wilkison Collection is that he traded off his four 1879 and 1880 Gold Stellas prior to the sale of his remaining collection of 43 gold patterns to Paramount in 1973. Thus, it is difficult to determine if the picture of the 1879 Flowing Hair Stella in the Akers’ book is the coin Wilkison once owned or if it a representative image like the one above. If the picture is of Wilkison’s coin, I have been unable to trace it despite having an image database of over 150 different 1879 Flowing Hair Stellas. However, the image in Akers’ book should be instantly identifiable based on the presence of a spot above the left serif of the T of UNITED.

Pedigree: Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection. Prior pedigree unknown – traded along with his other three 1879 and 1880 Gold Stellas prior to 1973 – subsequent pedigree unknown

9323
1879 $4 Coiled Hair “Stella” Judd 1638, Pollock 1838, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR66+CAM
This was not the Wilkison coin, but is included here as a representative example of the type

As with the preceding coin, it is unclear if the image in the Akers book was the actual coin in Dr. Wilkison’s collection. Here again, the plate coin in the Akers book does not match any image of 1879 Coiled Hair Stellas sold in recent years (of which there are twelve demonstrably different examples). Akers does offer a tantalizing clue in his write-up for this variety: “A piece that was formerly part of Dr. Wilkison’s collection is together with his three other Stellas in a Texas collection…” Now, if we can only identify that collection.

Pedigree: Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection. Prior pedigree unknown – traded along with his other three 1879 and 1880 Gold Stellas prior to 1973 – subsequent pedigree unknown.

8194
1879 $20 “Quintuple Stella”, Judd 1643, Pollock 1843, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR64+DCAM

Unlike with Dr. Wilkison’s $4 Stellas, we know the history of this coin both before and after he owned it. Of the five examples known today, this is the finest. PCGS has graded it PR64+DCAM; David Akers called it finest known. Technically, this coin is a pattern for a $20 gold coin, but it is linked to the $4 Stellas because of the alloy data and weight on the obverse.

Pedigree: Virgil Brand Collection (one of three he owned) – Fred Olsen Collection – B. Max Mehl 11/1944:624, $3,850 – Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection, sold privately as an intact collection in 9/1973 – Paramount International Coin Corporation, sold privately on 4/9/1976 (as part of the intact Wilkison Collection) – A-Mark – New England Rare Coin Auctions 4/1980:391 – Holecek Family Trust – Stack’s 10/2000:1626, $258,750 – Bob R. Simpson Collection

9321
1880 $4 Flowing Hair “Stella”, Judd 1657, Pollock 1857, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR67CAM
This was not the Wilkison coin, but is included here as a representative example of the type

Once again, the image in Akers’ book does not match any pictures of the twenty or so known examples. In performing plate-matching, it is clear that several of the pedigrees are either inaccurate or need confirmation. Come to think of it, that may be a good idea for a future blog — tracking down all the Judd 1657’s.

Pedigree: Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection. Prior pedigree unknown – traded along with his other three 1879 and 1880 Gold Stellas prior to 1973 – subsequent pedigree unknown.

1546
1880 $4 Coiled Hair “Stella”, Judd 1660, Pollock 1860, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR65CAM
This was not the Wilkison coin, but is included here as a representative example of the type

Pedigree: Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection. Prior pedigree unknown – traded along with his other three 1879 and 1880 Gold Stellas prior to 1973 – subsequent pedigree unknown.

Next installment: the final four gold patterns from the Wilkison Collection. Trust me, we’ll be going out with a bang!

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REVISITING THE DR. JOHN E. WILKISON COLLECTION OF GOLD U.S. PATTERNS, Part VI – 1873 to 1876

Posted on April 12, 2018 by 1 Comment

This installment of the Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection includes his gold Pattern coins dated from 1873 to 1876 inclusive.

471327

1873 $5 Judd 1337, Pollock 1481, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR66DCAM

Pedigree: Waldo C. Newcomer Collection – B.G. Johnson, sold privately on 7/19/1940 for $800 – F.C.C. Boyd Collection – Dr. J. Hewitt Judd Collection, traded in 1962 – Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection – Paramount International Coin Corp., sold privately on 4/9/1976 (as part of the intact Wilkison Collection) – A-Mark, 1978 – Bob R. Simpson Collection

This was the only gold Pattern coin of 1873.  Two examples are known of the 1873 $5 Judd 1337, both of which have traveled separate paths.  The example illustrated here is the actual coin owned by Dr. J. Hewitt Judd and Dr. Wilkison (see the pedigree above).  The other example appeared in an 1876 Haseltine sale (three years after it was made).  After wending it’s way through the Virgil Brand Collection, it ended up in the Egyptian King Farouk’s Collection.  Following the King’s abdication, the coin sold in Sotheby’s 1954 “Palace Collections” auction and his since disappeared from sight.  Akers wrote about a third example mentioned in Judd’s book, but that coin did not appear in Judd’s 7th edition and has since been discounted.

The obverse features a bust of Liberty facing right — distinctly opposite of the direction used on regular issue coins of the time.  The reverse shares the same reverse as the 1872 Amazonian $5 Gold Pattern (Judd 1240).

2040

1874 $10 Judd 1373, Pollock 1518, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR65+CAM

Pedigree: Louden Snowden (via William H. Woodin?) – W.W.C. Wilson Collection – F.C.C. Boyd Collection, sold privately in 1919 for $2,000 – Virgil Brand Collection (journal #90921) – Abe Kosoff, sold privately in the 1940’s for $8,000 – Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection, sold privately as an intact collection in 9/1973 – Paramount International Coin Corporation, sold privately on 4/9/1976 (as part of the intact Wilkison Collection) – A-Mark – Paramount (repurchased from A-Mark in 1978) – Paramount “Auction ‘79” 7/1979:184, not sold – Julian Leidman – Bowers & Ruddy 8/1981:2433, $90,000 – Ed Trompeter Collection – Superior 2/1992:137, $198,000 – Superior 2/1992:137, $198,000 – Superior 7/1993:695, $154,000 – Bob Cohen – Harlan White – Holecek Family Trust – Stack’s 10/2000:1621, $201,250 – “Southern” Collection – Bob R. Simpson Collection

In 1874, travelers to foreign lands faced the same problems with currency conversions that they face today, but there was no Internet with up-to-the-minute conversion rates, no credit cards with conversions taking place in the background, and no ATM’s for getting quick cash in another country’s currency.  Further, conversion rates depended on where the transaction was taking place: black market, banks, merchant shops, etc.  Judd 1373 was the answer for European travelers.  The back of the coin gave the weight (16.72 grams), the fineness (900 Fine or 90% gold) and the conversion rates for British, German, Swedish, Dutch, and French coins.  While this sounded like a good idea, and it certainyl would have been convenient to travelers, but the basic assumption had two major flaws: one, that the various currencies would remain stable forever; and two, that foreigners would accept the conversion rates.  If either of those assumptions failed — and they would — the coin would fail.  Needless to say, the concept and the design were never adopted.

The interesting about Judd 1373 is that it has a much larger diameter than a normal $10 gold piece.  Consequently, the planchet was thinner to equal the statutory weight.  This is often unclear from the images, but when laid side-by-side with a typical $10 gold piece of the era, the Judd-1373 appears surprisingly large.

Only two Judd 1373’s are known and Dr. Wilkison owned both.  He obtained the first example (this one) from Abe Kosoff in the 1940’s.  Though he did not need a duplicate, Wilkison obtained his second example in the mega-trade for Dr. Judd’s gold Pattern collection in 1962.

909

1874 $10 Judd 1373, Pollock 1518, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR65CAM

Pedigree: A. Louden Snowden – William H. Woodin – Waldo C. Newcomer, consigned the coin to Wayte Raymond in 1932 but it did not sell  – F.C.C. Boyd Collection – Dr. J. Hewitt Judd Collection – Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection, whose collection was sold intact in 9/1973 – Paramount International Coin Corporation, sold privately on 4/9/1976 (as part of the intact Wilkison Collection) – A-Mark, sold privately in 11/1978 – Paramount 7/1985:1306, $82,500 – Heritage 1/2010:2373, $1,265,000

Dr. Wilkison obtained this example in 1962 in a big trade with Dr. Judd.  Wilkison received 21 gold Pattern coins (including this piece) in return for a nearly complete run of Proof U.S. gold coins from 1858 to 1899, valued at $160,000 at the time.  It would be interesting to do an analysis to see how much those coins would be worth today and to see who got the better deal in the trade.

1598

1875 $5 Judd 1438, Pollock 1581, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR66DCAM

Pedigree: William H. Woodin Collection – Waldo C. Newcomer Collection – King Farouk of Egypt – Sotheby’s “Palace Collections” 2/1954:??? – Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection, whose collection was sold intact in 9/1973 – Paramount International Coin Corporation, sold privately on 4/9/1976 (as part of the intact Wilkison Collection) – A-Mark, 1978 – Paramount “Auction ‘84”  (in the set with the ten dollar Judd-1443) 7/1984:536, $83,600 – Ed Trompeter Collection – Heritage 5/2005:8336, $287,500 – Bob R. Simpson Collection

Judd 1438 is a prototype for a $5 gold piece.  The shape of Liberty’s coronet and the appearance of the bow in her hair has given rise to the nickname “Sailor’s Head” for this type.  The eagle on the reverse is reminiscent of that on the Twenty-Cent pieces and Trade Dollars.  Only two examples are known of Judd 1438.  Researcher Saul Teichman speculates that William Woodin obtained both pieces from A. Louden Snowden in return for the two $5o “Unions” (Judd 1546 and Judd 1588) that created such a scandal in 1909-1910.  The two Judd 1438’s parted ways for a time, but were reunited in the King Farouk Collection.  At the 1954 sale of the Farouk Collection, Dr. Wilkison purchased both.  Today, they are once again owned by one person, Bob Simpson.

466731875 $5 Judd 1438, Pollock 1581, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR65CAM

Pedigree: William H. Woodin Collection – King Farouk of Egypt Collection – Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection, sold intact in 9/1973 – Paramount International Coin Corporation, sold privately on 4/9/1976 (as part of the intact Wilkison Collection) – A-Mark, 1978 – Bowers & Ruddy 8/1981:2431, $45,000 – Bob R. Simpson Collection

8311875 $10 Judd 1443, Pollock 1587, Gold, Reeded Edge

Pedigree: F.C.C. Boyd Collection – William H. Woodin Collection – possibly Waldo C. Newcomer – Dr. J. Hewitt Judd Collection – Abe Kosoff “Illustrated History” 1/1962:480 – Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection, whose collection was sold intact in 9/1973 – Paramount International Coin Corporation, sold privately on 4/9/1976 (as part of the intact Wilkison Collection) – A-Mark, 1978 – Paramount “Auction ‘84” (in a set with $5 Judd-1438 7/1984:536, $83,600 – Ed Trompeter Collection – Heritage 5/2005:8337, $402,500 – Bob R. Simpson Collection

Judd 1443 is the $10 version of Judd 1581 and the designs are identical.  Two examples are known: the example illustrated above and a second example that appeared in the King Farouk sale in 1954 but has not reappeared since.

471328

1876 $20 Judd 1490, Pollock 1643, Gold, Reeded Edge – Unique

Pedigree: Capt. John Haseltine, sold prior to 6/1909 for $1,000 – William Woodin Collection – Waldo Newcomer Collection – King Farouk of Egypt Collection – New Netherlands, sold privately for $2,000 – Dr. John E. Wilkison – Paramount International Coin Corporation, sold privately on 4/9/1976 (as part of the intact Wilkison Collection) – Bob R. Simpson Collection

By itself, Judd 1490 looks like a regular Proof 1876 $20 Gold piece, but when compared with the regular Proofs of the year it is substantially different.  Both the obverse and the reverse were of the type adopted in 1877, so this is considered a transitional Pattern.  If the date of Judd 1490 is placed on a flat line, Liberty’s head appears to be facing directly to the left; on the regular 1876 Double Eagles, Liberty’s head is cocked unnaturally backwards if the date is oriented the same way.  On the reverse of the regular 1876 Double Eagles, the denomination is abbreviated “TWENTY D.”; on Judd 1490, it is spelled out “TWENTY DOLLARS” (as it was in 1877 and all subsequent years.

Judd 1490 is unique and currently resides in Bob Simpson’s collection.

In the next installment, we’ll look at Dr. Wilkison’s five gold Pattern coins of 1878.

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REVISITING THE DR. JOHN E. WILKISON COLLECTION OF GOLD U.S. PATTERNS, Part V

Posted on March 14, 2018 by 2 Comments

The Unique Six-Piece Set of gold “Amazonian” Pattern Coins

151498

One of the unique, Amazonian Gold Pattern Coins from the Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection

The six-piece set of 1872 gold Amazonian pattern coins was one of the highlights of the Dr. Wilkison Collection.  Indeed, it is one of America’s greatest numismatic treasures.  The name “Amazonian”, as it refers to the gold pattern coins, is a bit of a misnomer, as Liberty only appears as an Amazon warrior on the the 1872 Quarter Dollar (Judd 1195 to 1997), Half Dollar (Judd 1200 to Judd 1202), and Silver Dollar (Judd 1205 to Judd 1207) patterns.  However, the reverse design of these and the gold pattern coins was uniform, thus the “Amazonian” appellation has been extended to all of the coins in the set.

The existence of the Amazonian set was first published in the March 1886 issue of the Coin Collectors Journal, where R. Coulton Davis included them in his serial listing of the pattern coins known to him.  However, no fanfare accompanied the unique gold pattern coins, nor were they referred to as “Amazonians.”  Rather, they were simply listed according to Davis’ numbering scheme, with no mention of their unique nature.  The gold Dollar (known today as Judd 1224) was his No. 363; the gold Quarter Eagle (known today as Judd 1230) was No. 364; the gold $3 (known today as Judd 1235) was No. 365, the gold $5 (known today as Judd 1240) was No. 366; the gold $10 (known today as Judd 1245) was No. 367; and the gold $20 (known today as Judd 1250) was No. 368.  Apparently, Davis did not know that Amazonian pattern coins existed in aluminum, as he only listed copper and gold as the metals for each number.

According to Saul Teichman at www.uspatterns.com, the next owner of record was William H. Woodin, followed by H.O. Granberg, then mega-collector Waldo C. Newcomer.  These three owners kept the set intact, but after Newcomer the set was broken up.  The gold $1 went to F.C.C. Boyd and the other five coins went to Colonel E.H.R. Green, so we now have two tracks to follow.

The first track follows the gold $1 Amazonian from F.C.C. Boyd to Dr. J. Hewitt Judd, the author of the standard reference on pattern coins.  The gold Amazonian $1 became part of what Dr. Judd believed, mistakenly, to be a complete set of pattern gold Dollars; he did not know that the American Numismatic Society owned the unique 1858 Paquet gold $1.  Thus, when Dr. Wilkison inquired about the gold Amazonian $1 years later, Dr. Judd rebuffed him.

The second track follows the remaining Amazonian gold patterns from Col. Green to King Farouk of Egypt.  After Farouk’s forced abdication, Sotheby’s offered his extensive collection in 1954 as the “Palace Collection.”  By this time, Dr. Wilkison was a serious purchaser of gold pattern coins and the Farouk sale gave him the opportunity to flex his muscles.  Through his agent, Charles Green (no relation to Col. Green), Wilkison obtained eight gold pattern coins, including five of the Amazonian gold patterns.  After the sale, he purchased the 1876 transitional Double Eagle (Judd 1490) and the 1907 Indian Head Double Eagle (Judd 1905…formerly Judd 1776).

Having purchased the five Amazonian pattern coins from the Farouk sale, Dr. Wilkison attempted to join the two tracks and re-assemble the complete set.  He contacted Dr. Judd with an interesting offer.  According to David Akers, Dr. Wilkison felt so strongly that the coins should be together that he offered to either purchase the gold $1 from Dr. Judd or sell his five gold Amazonians to Dr. Judd, presumably at a reasonable price.  As mentioned previously, Dr. Judd refused to sell the gold $1 and, further, he passed on purchasing the five.  To fill the hole in his collection and pretend the Amazonian set was complete, Dr. Wilkison purchased a gilt copper Judd 1225.  However, the two tracks still remained separated.  With Dr. Judd refusing to sell and intending to leave his collection to his son, it seemed the two tracks would never come together.

However, “never” rarely means “never” in numismatics and, in a surprise move, Dr. Judd offered his collection of gold pattern coins through Abe Kosoff in 1962.  Of the 24 gold pattern coins in Dr. Judd’s collection, Dr. Wilkison only needed 21, so he worked out a trade with Kosoff of his collection of U.S. Proof gold coins from 1858 to 1899 for the pattern coins he needed.  The trade was approved and, finally, the two tracks rejoined and the Amazonian set of gold pattern coins was complete again.

The set has remained together ever since, passing through the hands of Paramount International Coin Corporation, A-Mark, Ed Trompeter, the collection of a “Southern Gentleman”, and finally the Bob Simpson Collection.  PCGS has had the distinct honor and privilege to grade and image the six Amazonian gold pattern coins, and they appear below in all their glory.

151492

1872 $1 Amazonian, Judd 1224, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR67+CAM
The linchpin to the complete set

151493

1872 $2.50 Amazonian, Judd 1230, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR67DCAM

151494
1872 $3 Amazonian, Judd 1235, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR67+DCAM

151495
 1872 $5 Amazonian, Judd 1240, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR66+CAM

151496
 1872 $10 Amazonian, Judd 1245, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR66+CAM

151498
 1872 $20 Amazonian, Judd 1250, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR65+CAM

Next installment: the 1873-1876 gold patterns from the Dr. Wilkison Collection.

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REVISITING THE DR. JOHN E. WILKISON COLLECTION OF GOLD U.S. PATTERNS, Part IV

Posted on February 14, 2018 by No Comments

In this installment, we’ll explore the 1860’s-dated gold patterns owned by Dr. Wilkison.  Include in this list are: 1960 $5 Judd 271; 1865 $20 Judd 452, and 1868 $10 Judd 661.

18268

1860 $5 Gold Pattern, Judd 271, Pollock 319, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR64+DCAM 31672893

Judd 271 is unusual in that the diameter is the same as a $10 gold piece, but to keep the weight the same as a regular $5 gold piece, the planchet was rolled out much thinner than normal.  Another unusual aspect of Judd 271 is that the V in FIVE is actually an inverted A.  Judd 271 is represented by only two examples, both of which (amazingly, but not surprsingly) were once owned by Dr. Wilkison.  The good doctor acquired his first example in the early 1940’s from Abe Kosoff for $4,200. In 1962, Dr. Wilkison traded for Dr. Judd’s collection of gold patterns, which included a second (and better) Judd-271.  Wilkison retained both examples, presumably keeping the first one as potential trade bait.

The pedigrees of Dr. Wilkison’s  two Judd 271’s are as follows:
PCGS PR64+DCAM
Robert Coulton Davis Collection – New York Coin & Stamp 4/1892:111 – S.H. & H. Chapman 4/1897:52 – Virgil Brand (Journal id #17020) – Horace Brand – Dr. Hewitt Judd, traded as part of a massive swap with Dr. Wilkison in 1962 – Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection, whose collection was sold intact in 9/1973 – Paramount International Coin Corporation, sold privately on 4/9/1976 – A-Mark – Ed Trompeter Collection – Southern Collection – Bob R. Simpson Collection

PCGS PR62CAM
Haseltine 3/1883:11 – Abe Kosoff, sold in the early 1940’s for $4,200 (per Akers) – Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection, whose collection was sold intact in 9/1973 – Paramount International Coin Corporation, sold privately on 4/9/1976 – A-Mark – Kagin’s – Bowers & Merena 8/2009 – Bowers & Merena 8/2010:1385, not sold – Heritage 8/2012:5480, $170,375

470659

1865 $20 Gold Pattern, Judd 452, Pollock 524, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR65+DCAM 28756937

From the front, Judd 452 looks like any other Proof 1865 Double Eagle but, when flipped over, the reverse reveals the motto “IN GOD WE TRUST” in an oval of 13 stars above the eagle.  Since the motto was not adopted until 1866 on Double Eagles, Judd 452 is referred to as a “transitional” pattern.  However, there is some question as to whether Judd 452 was struck in 1865 or sometime in the 1870’s.

Only two Judd 452’s are known.  One example is in the National Numismatic Collection at the Smithsonian Institution, acquired by them in 1892 and off the market (essentially) for eternity.  Dr. Wilkison acquired his out of the 1954 sale of the Farouk Collection.  Curiously, Dr. Wilkison eschewed the both the 1865 $5 Judd 445 and 1865 $10 Judd 449 in the Farouk sale, neither of which has re-appeared on the market since then.  Why would he avoid two semi-unique gold patterns, both of which he needed, when he was such an aggressive collector?

The pedigree of Wilkison’s Judd 452 is as follows:
PCGS PR65+DCAM
William H. Woodin Collection – Waldo C. Newcomer Collection – King Farouk Collection – Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection, whose collection was sold intact in 9/1973 – Paramount International Coin Corporation, sold privately on 4/9/1976 (as part of the intact Wilkison Collection) – A-Mark, 1978 – Bob R. Simpson Collection

38641868 $10 Gold Pattern, Judd 661, Pollock 734, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR66CAM 31672644

Judd 661 is an extremely rare gold pattern, of which four examples were reportedly struck, and of which four examples are known today.  Dr. Wilkison owned two examples.  Like his Judd 271’s, Dr. Wilkison obtained his first from Abe Kosoff in the early 1940’s (for a reported $5,500) and his second in the mega-trade with Dr. Judd in 1962.

According to David Akers, Judd 661 “is reportedly the last work of James B. Longacre.”  But, why was it made at all?  Was there a hue and cry to replace the enduring Liberty Head design?  A perusal of all the 1868 patterns shows a combination of die trials (most likely made for collectors) and some interesting designs, none of which were adopted.

The pedigrees of Dr. Wilkison’s Judd 661’s are as follows:
PCGS PR66CAM
Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection – Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection, whose collection was sold intact in 9/1973 – Paramount International Coin Corporation, sold privately on 4/9/1976 – A-Mark – Bob R. Simpson Collection

NGC PR65UCAM
F.C.C. Boyd Collection – Dr. J. Hewitt Judd Collection – Illustrated History of U.S. Coinage (Abe Kosoff, 1962):354 – Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection, whose collection was sold intact in 9/1973 – Paramount International Coin Corporation, sold privately on 4/9/1976 – A-Mark – Paramount “Auction ’84” 7/1984:528, $39,600 – Auction ’87:332 – Auction ’88:415 – Superior “Auction ’90” 8/1990:1463, $110,000 – Jones Beach Collection – Heritage 1/2007:1370, $218,500

Next installment: The 1872 Amazonian Gold Patterns!

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REVISITING THE DR. JOHN E. WILKISON COLLECTION OF GOLD U.S. PATTERNS, Part III

Posted on January 17, 2018 by No Comments

In the last installment, we looked at Dr. Wilkison’s two J-135’s. What did not show up on his inventory listing, but which has been attributed to him, is a blank planchet for an annular gold coin of the weight of .965 grains (or 14.89 grains). This weight conforms closely to some of the known J-135 Half Dollar patterns, but it is too light to be a J-136, J-137, J-169, or J-145 (the other annular gold patterns.

The pedigree on this mysterious coin is shown under Pollock-162 (his Item D, expanded here) as: Dr. John E. Wilkison (per Pollock) – D.M.X. Fretwell Estate (d) – Robert L. Hughes 3/1981:1059 (d) – Superior 10/1991:2226 (as Raw MS65), $2,530.

Abe Kosoff, in Judd’s Seventh Edition lists this coin under J-135 as “probably ex-Wilkison.”  If anyone knows of the whereabouts of this piece, or has any more specifics, please contact me at [email protected]

Now, on to more of Dr. Wilkison’s gold Dollar patterns.

88903

1852 $1 Gold Pattern, Judd 137, Pollock 164, Gold, Reeded Edge
PCGS PR65 31672920

Judd 137 was another attempt in 1852 at an annular Gold Dollar — or was it?  Two examples have survived, both struck over Quarter Eagles, one of which was dated 1859!  Clearly, Judd 137’s were struck as rarities for sale to collectors.  One example was owned by Dr. Wilkison; both nowreside in the Simpson  Collection (as of this writing).

There is some confusion regarding the early pedigrees of both pieces, but there is no doubt that the piece illustrated here is the one owned by Dr. Wilkison.  It is the plate coin in Aker’s Gold Pattern reference, where he claimed that it was struck over an 1846 Quarter Eagle. However, I examined this piece in person in 2000 and could find no evidence of the date, which is obliterated by an unfortunately placed leaf.  Nor is the date visible on Phil Arnold’s recent, high-resolution image here.

470205

1852 $1 Gold Pattern, Judd 141, Pollock 169, Gold, Plain Edge
PCGS PR65+ 31672921

Judd 141 is a “common” variety relative to the other gold patterns.  Pattern researcher, Saul Teichman, estimates that perhaps a dozen are known.  Dr. Wilkison owned two examples, but only one can be positively traced to his collection.  Like many of Dr. Wilkison’s gold patterns, this one is now part of the Simpson Collection.

470207

1852 $1 Gold Pattern, Judd 145, Pollock 173. Gold, Plain Edge, Thin Planchet
PCGS PR66+ 31672922

Judd 145 is the last of the annular gold patterns.  Both lightweight and heavyweight examples are known most commonly as Thin and Thick versions.  The Thick planchet varieties are believed to be true patterns of the year; the Thin planchets are thought to be restrikes made circa 1859 and later. Amazingly, Dr. Wilkison owned four Judd 145’s

 

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REVISITING THE DR. JOHN E. WILKISON COLLECTION OF GOLD U.S. PATTERNS, Part II

Posted on December 19, 2017 by No Comments

In this installment, I continue our journey through the amazing collection of U.S. Gold Pattern Coins built by Dr. John E. Wilkison.

325639PCGS MS62

1849 $1 Gold Pattern, Judd 115, Pollock 130, Gold, Plain Edge

Gold Dollars were not included as part of the American coinage scheme until 1849. When contemplating the new denomination, a concern was the size of the coin. If made of the normal weight, the diameter of a gold dollar was only 14.3 millimeters — the smallest of any coins then in use in America. A coin so small could be lost easily, so experiments were made to enlarge the diameter of the coin without altering the weight. Judd 115 illustrates that concept. James B. Longacre, who was ultimately responsible for the final designs, cut each of these patterns by hand, adding denticles, stars, lettering, numerals, and a wreath as incuse elements of the die. Because of the hand-engraving, each Judd 115 is unique in the size, placement, and relative positions of the various design elements.  Even the shape of the central perforation varies: some are square in shape; others are more rectangular.  Researcher David Akers speculated that as many as nine or ten examples existed, but the actual number may be closer to six or seven.

Dr. Wilkison owned two examples of the Judd 115. One is illustrated above; the second is the plate coin in David Akers’ “United States Gold Patterns.”

469987PCGS PR65+

(1852) 50C Pattern, Judd 135, Pollock 162, Gold, Reeded Edge

Judd 135 was the only gold pattern ever considered for the Half Dollar denomination.  Like Judd 115, it showed how a perforated design could be used to enlarge the small amount of gold contained in a Half Dollar.  For Judd 135, Mint employees used a uniface obverse with a denticled border.  For the other side, they used the reverse die of a Half Dime.  Despite being of such a small diameter (15.9 millimeters), an oversized perforation was required to achieve the proper weight.  Akers doubted this was a Half Dollar Pattern, but an 1852-dated letter from the Mint Director, George Eckert to Senator R. Hunter states clearly that this a proposal for a half dollar in gold.  This fits with what was going on in 1852, simply that large quantities of gold from the California mines needed to be turned into coins.

Dr. Wilkison owned two examples of the Judd 135. The example illustrated here is the plate coin in David Akers’ “United States Gold Patterns.”  As of this writing, it resides in the Simpson Collection as a PCGS PR65+.  Simpson owns the second Wilkison example, as well — a lovely PCGS PR66 with the following pedigree:

W.H. Woodin Collection – Lenox R. Lohr Collection – Stack’s 4/1962:2193 – Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection, whose collection was sold intact in 9/1973 – Paramount International Coin Corporation, sold privately on 4/9/1976 (as part of the intact Wilkison Collection) – A-Mark – Paramount “Auction ‘79” 7/1979:171 – Paramount “Auction ‘82” 8/1982:1810 – Bob R. Simpson Collection (as PCGS PR66)

The National Numismatic Collection at the Smithsonian Institution holds two Judd 135’s and a fifth is believed to exist somewhere “out there.”

151432PCGS PR66

Judd 136, P-163, Gold, Reeded Edge

Judd 136 is a companion coin to Judd 135.  Both were made at the same time (per the letter referenced above) and the purpose of Judd 136 was to create a perforated Gold Dollar.  At least four examples are known, with the possibility of a fifth.  Dr. Wilkison owned one example which he obtained from Dr. Judd in a massive trade in 1962.  The pedigree of Dr. Wilkison’s example is as follows:

DeWitt Smith Collection – Virgil Brand Collection (#46971) – Horace Brand – F.C.C. Boyd Collection – Dr. J. Hewitt Judd Collection – Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection, whose collection was sold intact in 9/1973 – Paramount International Coin Corporation, sold privately on 4/9/1976 (as part of the intact Wilkison Collection) – A-Mark – LRIS Collection – Superior 1/2008:658, $40,250- Bob R. Simpson Collection (as PCGS PR66, illustrated above)

In the next installment, we’ll look at the rest of Dr. Wilkison’s 1852 Gold Patterns

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REVISITING THE DR. JOHN E. WILKISON COLLECTION OF GOLD U.S. PATTERNS

Posted on November 21, 2017 by No Comments

In September 1973, Paramount International Coin Corporation (under the auspices of the noted gold coin expert, David Akers) purchased the collection of Dr. John E. Wilkison of Springfield, Tennessee. The collection consisted of 47 gold U.S. Pattern coins, 35 of which were different, and eight pieces that were unique. Dr. Wilkison built his collection over the period from 1942 to 1973, purchasing coins from the likes of dealers Charlie Green (who represented Dr. Wilkison at the 1954 sale of the King Farouk collection) and Abe Kosoff (who provided several major rarities and helped broker a mega-trade with the pattern specialist and author, Dr. J. Hewitt Judd). Dr. Wilkison’s collecting accomplishments surpassed those of any previous collector of gold U.S. Pattern coins (the King Farouk collection was the only one that was close and it had fewer different pieces and fewer total pieces).

In 1975, Akers published a book titled, “United State Gold Patterns: A Photographic Study of the Gold Patterns Struck at the United States Mint from 1836 to 1907.” Leaning heavily on the Wilkison collection and borrowing images from other collections and institutions, Akers was able to illustrate 46 of the 51 gold pattern coins. For the missing five pieces, Akers used copper versions of the same Judd numbers as illustrations.

In subsequent years, the Wilkison collection was broken up and sold off. Most have ended up in strong hands, which means they will not be entering the market any time soon. This, then, is the first of a series of articles that will seek to track down the coins from the Wilkison collection and update pedigree chains and grades, where known. Have the coins scattered to the winds or is there another collector who is trying to surpass Dr. Wilkison’s accomplishment? Stay tuned.

Here’s a teaser:

Judd 67

1836 $1 Judd 67, Pollock 70, Gold, Plain Edge

PCGS PR65

Judd 67 is one of the most “common” of all U.S. gold patterns, thanks to restriking in subsequent years. Dr. Wilkison had three Judd 67’s, but only two seem to have entered the auction market that can be identified as being from his collection. The last appearance of one piece was in 2002 when it sold as a PCGS PR64 in Superior’s ANA action. That piece is distinctive because it was struck over a Gold Dollar, with enough undertype remaining to identify it as an 1859, thus proving that at least some Judd 67’s were struck (or restruck) at a later date. The example illustrated is the plate coin from Akers’ Pattern book.   If it is ex-Wilkison, then the pedigree is:

Dr. John E. Wilkison Collection, whose collection was sold intact in 9/1973 – Paramount International Coin Corporation, sold privately on 4/9/1976 (as part of the intact Wilkison Collection) – A-Mark – Holman Family Collection – Heritage 11/2003:11001, $17,250 – Heritage 6/2004:6413, $17,250 – Heritage 8/2016:4421, $19,975

If anyone knows of the whereabouts of the third Judd 67 from the Wilkison collection, please let me know in the comments below or email me at [email protected], and I will update this entry.

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LET’S TAKE A TRIP TO HAWAII

Posted on October 26, 2017 by No Comments

Recently, I purchased a twenty-six foot Ranger sailboat and renamed her “Makaleka.”

“What does this have to do with numismatics?” you ask. Well, Makaleka is the Hawaiian version of my wife, Maggie’s, name. This got me thinking of Hawaii and, being a numismatist, that got me thinking of Hawaiian coins. To mimic the “Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon” game, my boat is three degrees from Hawaiian coins: 1) my boat is named Makaleka; 2) Makaleka is Hawaiian; and 3) Hawaii has coins.

There are three places to learn about Hawaiian coins. The first is the “Redbook” (more properly called “A Guidebook of United States Coins”) published by Whitman.  Hawaiian coins appear in the back of the book under “other Issues.” The Redbook lists and prices all of the major denominations of Hawaiian coins. Also included are the tokens used on different Hawaiian plantations during the middle to late 1800’s.

The second source for information on Hawaiian coins is the “Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1801-1900” published each year by Krause Publications. As with the Redbook, Hawaiian coins appear at the end of the United States section instead of in their expected place in the alphabetical listings. The Standard Catalog lists all of the major denominations, some varieties, one pattern, but no tokens.

Hawaiian Money

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The third source, and the best (in my opinion), is “Hawaiian Money, Standard Catalog, 2nd edition” by Donald Medcalf and Ronald Russell. This 160 page books covers every bit of history related to Hawaiian coins, paper money, commemorative medals, commercial tokens, school tokens, military tokens, plantation tokens, and much more. Every known variety is listed, along with patterns and Proof strikings. The pricing is dated (it’s from 1991) but, otherwise, it is a treasure trove of information.

The two most popular areas of Hawaiian numismatics are the afore-mentioned coins and tokens, so I’ll whet your appetite with a few highlights.

Hawaii Cent
1847 Hawaiian Cent – the first Hawaiian Coin – PCGS MS65BN

The first Hawaiian coin was the 1847 One Cent. The obverse features a bust of King Kamehameha facing the viewer; the reverse shows the denomination “Hapa Haneri” within a wreath. Researchers believe these were made somewhere in New England because they arrived in Hawaii aboard a ship out of Boston, Massachusetts. The 1847 Hawaiian Cents were the subject of one of my previous blogs and I refer readers there for the full story.

Hawaii Dollar1883 Hawaiian Dollar – PCGS MS67

The largest denomination issued by Hawaii was the Silver Dollar. These were struck at the Philadelphia Mint at the request of the Hawaiian government and the Dollars can be found in both circulation strike and Proof formats. The Proof version is extremely rare, with only 26 struck. The obverse features a bust of a bearded King Kalakaua I facing right; the reverse shows the Coat of Arms of Hawaii.

Hawaii Eighth Dollar PatternOdd Denomination 1/8 Dollar Pattern in Copper – PCGS PR67BN

Copper Patterns (or Die Trials) exist of the 1/8 Dollar, ¼ Dollar, ½ Dollar and 1 Dollar denominations (no Dime patterns exist because that denomination did not join the lineup until later). These were struck from the same dies used to make the silver Proof sets.

Hawaii Quarter Dollar ProofColorful Proof Hawaiian Quarter Dollar – PCGS PR67CAM

Silver Proofs are known of all denominations. Proof sets were made on two separate occasions and the maximum mintage of any of the denominations is 26 (only 20 of the silver Proof 1/8 Dollar were made).

Hawaii Kahului Token15C Token of the Kahului Railroad – PCGS AU55

Tokens were issued and used on several Hawaiian sugar plantations and railroads. They were meant for use in the company stores, but they circulated throughout the island, where coinage was scarce. They are generally crudely made, rare and difficult to locate in high grades.

You can establish a single degree of separation with Hawaiian coins by sourcing the publications listed above and purchasing your first Hawaiian coin or token. Then, the next time you take a trip to Hawaii, you’ll have a much deeper connection with the Islands. Aloha!

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REDISCOVERING THE JAMES A. STACK, SR. COLLECTION

Posted on September 29, 2017 by 10 Comments

James A. Stack, Sr. was a collector of substantial means and discrimination who was active in numismatics from the late 1930s until his death in 1951. He acquired many rarities and “finest known” coins by taking full advantage of the opportunities presented to him as great collections came onto the market. He owned an 1894-S Dime, a 1798 Small Eagle $5, an 1870-S Silver Dollar, an 1838-O Half Dollar, and hundreds of other U.S. coins including condition-rarities, pattern coins, early Proof coins, and Pioneer gold. Portions of his collection were sold over a 20 year period beginning in 1975. Had his collection been sold as a single unit, it would have been one of the landmark auctions of the 20th century. Nonetheless, the James A. Stack pedigree signifies importance, rarity, and quality.

The following auctions contained important portions of the James A. Stack Collection (note: Stack’s, the New York auction house, was no relation to James A. Stack…they just shared the same name).

322637small
The James A. Stack 1838-O Half Dollar – PCGS PR64BM

Stack’s 3/1975
This auction was the first introduction to the treasures that awaited in the James A. Stack Collection. This was a stand-alone sale (no outside consignments) of Mr. Stack’s Quarter Dollars and Half Dollars. Highlights in the Quarter section included a Mint State 1804, a Proof 1827 Original, and a Proof 1842 Small Date. Standouts among the Half Dollars included an 1838-O, a Branch Mint Proof. 1861-O, and a Gem 1892-O Micro O.

112196smallA nice 1796 Large Cent from the James A. Stack Collection – PCGS MS63BN

Bowers & Ruddy 4/1979
The second installment of the James A. Stack Collection included his U.S. Large Cents. This was the only time that a firm other than Stack’s was chosen to present Mr. Stack’s coins.

3446small
The Finest Known 1801 Half Dime – from the James A. Stack Collection – PCGS MS66+

Stack’s 11/1989
This sale offered Mr. Stack’s Colonial Coins followed by his Half Cents through Half Dimes. Highlights included a 1792 “Roman Head” Washington Cent with a blundered edge, an 1811 Restrike Half Cent, Proof-only Half Cents of 1831, 1836, and 1840-1849, an AU 1792 Half Disme, several Mint State Half Dimes of the 1794-1795 period, and an 1802 Half Dime.

7057small
The James A. Stack 1894-S Dime – PCGS SP66BM

Stack’s 1/1990
The 1894-S Dime from the James A. Stack Collection headlined this sale. Also included were his collection of U.S. Dimes and his Private and Territorial gold coins. Dimes must have been one of Mr. Stack’s favorite coins because the quality and depth of his collection was exceptional. He had a Mint State 1809 Dime, Proofs of 1820, 1822, 1824, and 1825, as well as numerous later dates. His selection of Pioneer gold was small, but included two $50 “Slugs”, an 1849 Mormon $20, a Gem Clark, Gruber & Co. Half Eagle, and numerous California Fractional gold coins.

Stack’s 3/1990
Nearly 2,000 lots were offered from the James A. Stack Collection of U.S. Paper Money, many of which hailed from the celebrated Albert Grinnell Collection of more than forty years earlier. From Demand Notes, Legal Tender Notes, Silver Certificates, Treasury Notes, Gold Certificates, to National Bank Notes, and even Colonial Currency, this collection included highlight after highlight.

2956small1820 $5 – PCGS MS66
A “taste” of the quality of the James A. Stack gold coins

Stack’s 10/1994
This sale included a nice run of gold coins from the James A. Stack collection. Highlights included a nearly complete set of Gold Dollars, a Proof 1821 Quarter Eagle, an 1841 Quarter Eagle, 20 early Half Eagles dated from 1795 to 1807, an 1819 Half Eagle, and hundreds of other high-quality Mint State and Proof gold coins.

17778small
The James A. Stack 1870-S Silver Dollar – PCGS MS62

Stack’s 3/1995
Other consignments to this sale make it difficult to know exactly which coins were part of the James A. Stack collection, but those that can be identified are a complete set of 20 Cent pieces (including the rare 1876-CC), a large selection of Proof and Mint State Seated Liberty Silver Dollars (including an 1870-S Silver Dollar that later went on to sell for more than a million dollars), a set of Trade Dollars (minus the 1884 and 1885), a wonderful selection of high-grade Morgan Dollars, various gold coins (including the ultra-rare 1815 Half Eagle), and a complete set of Proof 1872 gold coins

Coin Galleries (a subsidiary of Stack’s) 4/1995
I haven’t been able to locate a copy of this catalog, but I am almost certain that this sale would have included world coins from Mr. Stack’s collection. I’ll update the post as more information is uncovered.

Stack’s 5/1995
Some of Mr. Stack’s world coins were included in this sale, but, unfortunately, very few (if any) were identified as having originated with his collection.

No additional sales of James A. Stack coins have occurred since 1995 with the exception of reappearances of individual coins, and it is doubtful if any more coins are held by his estate or descendants.

1653smallThe James A. Stack 1797 $2.50 – PCGS MS62 (Finest Known) – his name was recently reattached to this coin’s pedigree

As desirable as the James A. Stack pedigree remains today, there are many instances where his name has been stripped, intentionally or otherwise, from the ownership chains. Reattaching his name, which occurs fairly frequently, is a pleasant by-product of my work on the PCGS CoinFacts Condition Census. In fact, discovering one of those connections is what brought my attention to this remarkable collector.

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