Goldberg Coins and Collectibles



Sale 23

Pre-Long Beach Coin and Currency Auction


U.S. Coins - Territorial Gold
 
 
Lot Photo Description Realized
Lot 3489
  Withdrawn Unsold
Lot 3490
Christopher Bechtler, $1 N. CAROLINA, 30 gr. NGC graded MS-61. From the third series of coins issued by Christopher Bechtler from late 1831 or early 1832 to 1834 (these are characterized by the weight of 30 grains per Dollar and the legend "N. CAROLINA"). This example is brilliant yellow, characteristic of the native gold found in the Southeastern U.S. The surfaces are semi-reflective and choicer than the grade suggests. The reverse is rotated 180 degrees from its normal position. NGC reports 4 in this grade, with only 4 finer (all MS-62).
Estimated Value $10,000 - 11,000.
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Lot 3491
August Bechtler, 1 DOLLAR CAROLINA, 27 gr. 21 carats. NGC graded MS-61. A pale, yellow-gold example with alternating areas of prooflike and satiny luster. Struck on a slightly wavy planchet, most likely as made. Otherwise, this is a pleasant, mark-free coin. The Bechtlers were prolific minters in the Southeastern United States, responding to the supply of gold bullion and the demand for small denomination coins (the first U.S. Gold Dollars were not made until 1849). Their coins were well received and circulated widely, even for many years after they were struck.
August Bechtler took over the coining business from Christopher Bechtler in 1840.
Estimated Value $3,000 - 3,500.
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Lot 3492
August Bechtler, 1 DOLLAR CAROLINA, 27 gr. 21 carats. NGC graded AU-58. No designation as the Reeded or Plain Edge. Struck on a slightly bent, slightly laminated planchet. The surfaces are faintly lustrous and show very little wear and hardly any post-striking flaws. A nice "toughie" for the collector of Southern "Pioneer" gold coins.
Estimated Value $2,400 - 2,600.
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Lot 3493
August Bechtler, 5 DOLLARS CAROLINA, 134 gr. 21 carats. NGC graded AU-58. Rich, green-gold surfaces, with coppery toning on the highest points. Unlike so many of the Bechtler pieces, this piece has never suffered under the "conservers" hand -- in other words, no attempts have ever been made to clean or "improve" this coin. This is so refreshing, as naturally colored coins have virtually disappeared from the market. This was the largest of the denominations made by the Bechtlers, who had a nice little, homespun business providing coins to the local communities for nearly two decades! Kagin 20 was part of the Fifth series of gold coins produced by Christian Bechtler sometime between 1834 and 1840. Another variety exists without a star below the stated weight.
Estimated Value $9,000 - 11,000.
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Lot 3494
1850 Moffat & Co. (San Francisco) $5 Gold. PCGS graded AU-53. Struck in a pale yellow-gold, with a bit of the characteristic greenish tint on both sides, plus some coppery toning as well. A very nice, clean coin that still retains some of the original mint luster. Moffat & Co. were prolific issuers of gold coins in the 1849-1850 period, eventually becoming sub-contractors to the United States Assay Office of Gold. Their coins were among the highest purity, hence the most widely accepted, of any Pioneer gold coins. That any of these coins survived until today is a near-miracle, since most of them were destroyed and converted into Federal gold coinage once the San Francisco Mint opened in 1854. Thankfully, collectors, shipwrecks, and forgetful owners saved a few for the collectors of today! (PCGS # 10243) .
Estimated Value $4,000 - 4,500.
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Lot 3495
1851 U.S. Assay Office $50 "slug", 880 THOUS. Reeded edge. SEGS graded MS-63 Star, cleaned. One of the best strikes we have ever seen of this variety. All of the lettering in the outer border is clearly legible, the eagle and shield show nearly full details, and the engine-turning on the reverse is simply breath-taking to behold. The "cleaning" mentioned on the holder is slight and consists more of a dipping than any sort of harsh cleaning or polishing. The corners are all crisp, unbruised, and sharp. This massive hunk of gold was the U.S. government's answer to the call for a uniform, high-quality gold coinage in the California mining fields. These were not technically coins, but were referred to as "Slugs" or "Ingots." The reason they are so rare today is that most were taken up and melted once the San Francisco Mint began operations in 1854.
Estimated Value $24,000 - 26,000.
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Lot 3496
1852 U.S. Assay Office $10 Gold, 884 THOUS. AU-50. Lightly hairlined from an old cleaning and possibly repaired along the upper obverse edge (done so well that it is virtually impossible to detect). Lovely, pale, yellow-gold in color. Nicely struck and otherwise quite impressive.
This was the lowest denomination produced by the United States Assay Office of Gold.
Estimated Value $6,000 - 6,500.
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Lot 3497
1853 U.S. Assay Office $20 Gold, 900 THOUS. NGC graded MS-61. Soft golden surfaces and nice, frosty cartwheel luster on both sides. Very nicely struck, with virtually all details present in their full glory. Minor rim bruise from 8-9:00 on the obverse, apparently not enough to impact the grade or prevent holdering. The overall "look" is that of an MS-63 coin, so there seems to be some potential here.
The 1853 U.S.Assay Office of Gold coins were struck in response to the spate of underweight, debased, ill-made private gold coins that appeared shortly after the beginning of the California Gold Rush. Because the U.S. Assay Office was a governmental, not-for-profit institution, they had no incentive to cheat on the coins by reducing their weights and gold content. Thus, the desired effect of driving the bad money out of circulation was achieved and, until the San Francisco Mint could begin operations, these well-made coins became the money of choice in California!
Estimated Value $7,500 - 8,200.
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Lot 3498
1850 Baldwin & Co. (San Francisco) $5 Gold. PCGS graded MS-61. Premium Quality. A wonderful rarity that we had the pleasure of handling way back in 1988, when we sold it (under the Superior Galleries name) as part of the A. Bernard Shore collection. In 1988 we called it "MS-60." Today it merits a grade of MS-61 at PCGS, tying it with one other example as the finest graded at any service (it's also nice to have our conservative grading recognized by third-party experts). A beautiful piece with fully lustrous surfaces, no wear, but with some scattered nicks and scratches on both sides. Struck from a terminal state of the dies, with a large cud over the eight and ninth stars, plus a tinier rim cud at 9 o'clock on the reverse. The strike is excellent, even in the areas opposite the cuds, which is amazing considering that the Pioneer minters were more interested in extending the life of their dies than the quality of their coins. Thanks to on-going research, we know a lot more about Pioneer Gold coins, their rarity, and the conditions in which they can be found. As a result, the importance of this piece has only magnified over time (PCGS # 10025) .
Estimated Value $22,000 - 27,000.
Superior Galleries "A. Bernard Shore Collection" January 30, February 1-2, 1988, Lot 4635. Earlier from the Pacific Coast auction of June 1987 (Lot 1816), possibly from the Stack's auction of June 1983 (Lot 826).

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$28,750
Lot 3499
1852 Wass, Molitor & Co. (San Francisco) $5 Gold. Large head. PCGS graded AU-55. Premium Quality. This is an old friend, originally sold by us (under the Superior Galleries name) as part of the A. Bernard Shore collection, where we described it, as follows: "Well struck with the exception of stars eight through eleven on the obverse; the reverse lacks the concavity which is usually seen, and which often makes the reverse appear extremely weakly struck. Quite lustrous and with beautiful rich orange gold color. Well centered and with pleasing surfaces; a small obverse edge dent at 1 o'clock serves as identification. This is a very rare variety with fewer than 20 auction records recorded in nearly 75 years. We feel that fewer than 20 specimens exist, and most of these grade only Good to Fine. We are unaware of more than 3 which are as nice (or finer) than this example." Bringing our previous description up to date, we note that our conservative grade of AU-50 in the Shore sale has now been elevated to AU-55 by PCGS and the edge dent at 1 o'clock is no longer visible because of the way the coin sits in the holder. We presume any finer examples would have made it onto the market by now and, some of those examples we once thought were this coin's equal (or better) may not have passed the rigors of the grading services. In any event, the new owner can rest assured that this is a significant coin, at or near the top of the Condition Census, and a great rarity from a small maker of Pioneer gold coins well-known for their rarity and desirability (PCGS # 10342) .
Estimated Value $15,000 - 20,000.
Superior Galleries "A. Bernard Shore Collection" January 30, February 1-2, 1988, Lot 4636.

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Realized
$33,350
Lot 3500
1855 Kellogg & Co. (San Francisco) $20 Gold. Sharpness of MS-60. Sold by us (under the Superior Galleries name) in 1988, now re-entering the market after 15 years. Our description still stands: "Very sharply struck except for the stars at left. The surfaces are fully lustrous and satiny with glowing golden orange color. There are a few light scrapes on the obverse; reverse has a more severe scrape in the left field plus a dig on the shield. A remarkable coin and certainly among the finest known of this type variety."
Estimated Value $4,500 - 5,000.
Superior Galleries "A. Bernard Shore Collection" January 30, February 1-2, 1988, Lot 4643.

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Lot 3501
1861 Clark, Gruber & Co. (Denver, Colorado) $20 Gold. ANACS graded EF Details, Repaired, net VF-20. Heavily polished, presumably to disguise some well-executed repairs. The result is a decent-looking coin that is probably far better looking than it was before the repair work. This is a great opportunity for the collector who has always wanted to own this important rarity, but just couldn't come up with the funds necessary to purchase a problem-free example.
Struck from a late state of the dies, with interesting cracks appearing above and to the right of the date.
Estimated Value $10,000 - 12,000.
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