Goldberg Coins and Collectibles



Sale 60

Pre-Long Beach Coin Auction


$5 Gold
 
 
Lot Photo Description Realized
Lot 2842
1795. $5 Capped Bust Small Eagle. PCGS graded MS-62. A needle sharp strike on a clean adjustment free planchet save for a vertical mark from Liberty's ear to her bust. Lovely rose color and delicate golden hues cover the surfaces on both sides. The surfaces shimmer with mint brilliance topped by rich color as noted. Only 8,707 struck for this first year of issue. Very choice for a first-year example as well as for the grade. Resplendent hair detail is thoroughly frosted with keen-edged waves and curls strengthening outward from the sharp cap and central lovelock curl. Taking stock of another key aspect of the grade, this piece has knife-edged devices in the letters and stars, the eagle on the reverse and all accompanying design such as the simple, yet artistic palm branch beneath the eagle. Only the center breast feathers lack full detail, but are still much clearer than the often diffused strike most often seen. This gives the coin an appreciable advantage over others in its class.

Though a small number of Mint State 1795 half eagles survive, most line up along the lower steps of the Mint State scale. The 1795 half eagle happens to be the first gold denomination issued by the U.S. Mint, with the first delivery occurring towards the end of July, 1795. According to the Bass-Dannreuther guide "There is no doubt that there are fewer than 1,000 Small Eagle 1795 half eagles still available to today's collectors -- combining all the 12 varieties! The high estimates of the known survivors of the 12 Small Eagle varieties added together are only slightly more than 600 specimens. Even if the estimates are off by twenty percent, only 750 or so of these spectacular early American coins are known."

On this die variety, the date is wide and star 11 joins Y of LIBERTY. The wreath has 4 berries, and the upper leaf in the palm branch ends at the foot of I in United. This is one of the more often seen 1795 varieties with possibly 200 examples extant. The previous use of this obverse was on BD-2. Pop 21; 13 finer (PCGS # 8066) .
Estimated Value $80,000 - 90,000.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Unsold
Lot 2843
1802/1 $5 Capped Bust. NGC graded MS-62. A nicely struck example with light golden toning. This is a very well defined example for the series with appreciable detail over the peripheries and central devices and the striking appearance of its 2 over 1 overdate. Any grade-defining abrasions are small and not in the least distracting. The coin is devoid of adjustment marks. Say what you will, collectors prefer early gold pieces to be this way. The 1802 is one of the more readily obtainable early Half Eagles in mint condition, but the high attrition rate due to melting precludes a large extant population. A lovely, frosty coin that would make a pleasing addition to even the most advanced collection. Pop 18; 27 finer, 13 in 63, 13 in 64, 1 in 65 (PCGS # 8083) .

Historic note: Martha Dandridge Custis Washington (June 2, 1731 May 22, 1802) was the wife of George Washington, the first president of the United States. Although the title was not coined until after her death (the year of this Half Eagle, 1802), Martha Washington is considered to be the first First Lady of the United States. During her lifetime, she was known simply as "Lady Washington". George Washington passed away in 1799.
Estimated Value $14,000 - 15,000.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$17,250
Lot 2844
1803/2 $5 Capped Bust. PCGS graded MS-64 PQ. In a new secure plus holder. Although this coin didn't receive a plus designation it truly is a sensational example. Dripping with mint bloom and beautifully toned. Tremendous eye appeal. All 1803 half eagles are overdates. Two obverse dies were used, and both show prominent remnants of an underdigit 2. The present offering represents a highly original MS64 example of this bold overdate issue with sparkling, lustrous yellow-gold surfaces highlighted by warm orange-gold. The satiny texture adds a great deal to the already prominent visual appeal which, due to the choice condition of the fields and devices, puts this coin in a category above all others of its grade. Overdate details plain to the unaided eye. The coin seems to be devoid of all but a few trivial marks, which are mainly on the reverse such as a faint line beneath the part of the scroll with UNUM on it. Rare as such. One has to assume that a good many are not as carefully struck as this piece, either, with no suggestion or even a whisper of weakness at the high points. The present coin is every bit the grade it purports to be on the holder, and then some. A truly lovely 1803 Half Eagle in all regards and very important as such. Once more: sensational eye appeal! Pop 10; 3 finer, 1 in 65, 2 in 66 (PCGS # 8084) .
Estimated Value $40,000 - 45,000.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Unsold
Lot 2845
1803/2 $5 Capped Bust. Sharpness of VF-30. Probably worn as jewelry years ago. Easily worth our conservative estimate. The interesting 3 over 2 overdate is plainly visible to the naked eye.
Estimated Value $1,000 - 1,200.
View details and enlarged photos
Realized
$4,485
Lot 2846
1804. Small 8 BD-1 Rarity 4+. NGC graded MS-64. Boldly struck and honey color golden in color. We note some very faint adjustment marks on the obverse as made. Only 30,475 struck for the year. Identifiable by a short diagonal dash in the open space below UNUM on the reverse. A gorgeous bright coin with nice natural color. The surfaces on this handsome coin are judged by us to be mellow yellow to greenish gold in color, and quite lustrous, highly frosted, dramatically so, with the MS64 grade acting on behalf of its outstanding quality. Circumstances with the bloom off the dies being what it is, sharp-edged devices and lettering throughout add immensely to the coin's beauty. 1804 is noted for its sharp, clear detail, and this coin's strike is right up there among the finest seen. Evidence of adjustment marks can be seen in the hair. A small curved mark on the cheek is also present. BD-1, as a variety has several notable identifiers: First is the "normal 8" in the date (formerly a small 8, but it is the correct 8 punch according to Dannreuther). The top of the 1 is blunt (missing its flag, like 1800. The 4 is small. On the reverse there is a graver line from the left shield point through B in ribbon, through star 12 to the upper beak.

Collectors and sophisticated investors who have a prefer to bide their time by sitting back and watching other people place the first bids, so essential to the genre of this field, will do wise to pick up their bid card (or press the correct computer button) and show their willingness to compete for the honor of possessing this 1804 important early half eagle! Pop 6; none finer (PCGS # 8085) .

The year 1804 was a busy one for President Jefferson and his administration. First, Lewis and Clark's report from America's newly purchased Louisiana territory was eagerly anticipated by the Interior Department. Next, Vice President Aaron Burr and ex-Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton fought their famous duel. (Hamilton lost and was killed; Aaron Burr fled but was captured; and Jefferson was mortified by the whole incident). Finally, it was an election year and Thomas J. had to tell the voters all sorts of fancy tales to get them to re-elect him. While this was in progress, the Philadelphia Mint crew worked noisily but diligently away in their hot, stuffy coin factory turning out these attractive half eagles.
Estimated Value $40,000 - 45,000.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Unsold
Lot 2847
1806 $5 Capped Bust. NGC graded AU-58. Mostly untoned. 54,417 minted. A highly lustrous AU with a nuance of brilliant surface on both sides, this being underpinned by full frost around the stars and legends. Luster is retained within the devices as well. Struck from typically-sharp dies that imported all its fine detail, especially at the Liberty's hair and cop. The eagle, too is mostly sharp, barring a few vertical stripes in the shield and the left edge near the top where the shield overlaps the wing. Pop 41; 148 finer.

Students of history have heard about the trials and tribulations of the early days at the Philadelphia Mint. Congress nearly voted to close the facility in 1801, and only renewed the law authorizing its existence every five years through 1828, when its continuance was finally set in perpetuity.

Holding an 1806 gold half eagle in your hand brings to mind an era when Missouri was still a distant land with trappers and Indians dominating the landscape west of the Appalachians; Thomas Jefferson had only recently completed the Louisiana Purchase which brought Emperor Napoleon (the seller) much needed gold to fight his endless wars in Europe. Somehow, through wars and inflation and the fickle finger of Fate, this $5 gold piece has survived virtually unscathed. It will not be forgotten by today's appreciative collector.
Estimated Value $9,000 - 9,500.
View details and enlarged photos
Realized
$10,063
Lot 2848
1809/8 $5 Capped Draped Bust. NGC graded MS-62. Well struck with nice reflective surfaces. 33,875 pieces minted. This is indeed a golden, mint-original example, uncleaned and attractive having somehow escaped misfortune in its two hundred year passage through time. Hard to believe such a thing is possible. The strike, like the luster, is excellent, in fact, exceptional given the hit-or-miss quality of early pieces like this. A well-struck example with good details. While we would not presume to call it "world class" quality nevertheless when it comes to having most of the endearing features that attract the critical eye of the coin collector, this coin is for a real connoisseur. Pop 38; 59 finer (PCGS # 8104) .

Die note: One interesting feature about this piece that Dannreuther mentions in his die variety guide is the large 9 punch employed on this die. It is much larger than the other digits, possibly from the punch set that was used for the Large Date varieties in 1810. The partial numeral under the 9 does not seem to match the curve of an 8 or this 9. Traditionally, all 1809 half eagles are described as 1809/8. As with the other dies made during the employ of John Reich at the mint, star 13 has a small notch out of one point (that which is closest to the rim dentils). Some believe this is Reich's "secret signature" as such an anomaly could not occur otherwise. (Reich worked at the mint from 1807 until 1817.).
Estimated Value $11,000 - 12,000.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$13,800
Lot 2849
1810 $5 Capped Draped Bust. Small date, large 5. NGC graded MS-62. Lightly toned and shows some wear. An uncleaned specimen with highly concentrated detail on the main devices, clearly this was struck firmly by the coining dies. Further, there are no overt marks or inujury to the rims, so not "problems" had to be taken into consideration by the grading service when it assigned the MS62 rating. Pop 17; 12 finer.

According to www.trivia-library.com, in 1810 the U.S. population was 7,239,881. "(The 3rd U.S. census listed: 1,211,364 slaves; 186,746 free Negroes; and 60,000 immigrants.) Between 1810 and 1830, 2 million people left the eastern States for the West" as settlements expanded into the hinterland.

Some were met by friendly indigenous people, others were not. "Tecumseh (spelled variously Tecumtha, Tecumthe, and Tikamthi) was the Indian chief of the Shawnees who, with his brother Tenskwatawa (The Prophet), tried to unite the Indians in the western part of the U.S. against the whites."

In 1810 he told President James Madison's messenger: "These lands are ours. No one has a right to remove us, because we were the first owners. The Great Spirit above has appointed this place for us, on which to light our fires, and we will remain. As to boundaries, the Great Spirit knows no boundaries, nor will His red children acknowledge any." (He was not listened to.).
Estimated Value $9,000 - 9,500.
View details and enlarged photos
Realized
$12,075
Lot 2850
1810 $5 Capped Draped Bust. Large date, large 5. PCGS graded AU-50. Pleasing natural antique golden toning. A first-rate specimen of this Type and grade with luster still showing around the stars, legends, and flowing across the deepest recesses of the devices. Satisfactorily struck for the date, indeed, about as excellent as this date is ever found. Only a few stars on the left side lack their centrils. The coin's designer would have like this one! (Note the small "chip" out of one point on the last star on the right. This is Assistant Engraver John Reich's signature, the man who designed the coin and remained at the mint until 1817.) (PCGS # 8108) .

Historic note: According to scholarship done by Bunker Hill Rare Coins, "An important innovation by Reich was to put the denomination on gold and silver coins. This had not been previously done at the mint. By 1815 what John Reich had accomplished, for the first time in U.S. Mint history, was to create a set of circulating coins with a common obverse device; that of the Capped Liberty. No one knows for sure who was the inspiration for this woman depicted on Reich's coins. A 19th century writer speculated that the model was "Reich's fat German mistress." Reich modified the half eagle in 1813 to create what was to be known as the Capped Head design."
Estimated Value $6,000 - 6,500.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$6,900
Lot 2851
1811 $5 Capped Draped Bust. . BD-2, Breen-6464, Small 5. NGC graded MS-65. Well struck and glistening with mint luster throughout; all untoned. This extraordinary Capped Draped Bust year of Type and $5 denomination features shimmering light-gold satin-like to frosty mint bloom complemented by a highly assertive strike. Not even a hint of toning completes the allure of this radiant jewel. In light of the near-absence of examples of this issue that bear a higher numerical grade from any of the major grading services (only 1 higher reported by NGC), it goes without saying that the specimen offered here is easily among the finest known. If ever a side-by-side comparison with any/all of the small number of true Gem BU examples of this important early issue was ever possible, then it could conceivably be determined exactly where this coin stands within the condition census.

Note: the same small 5 punch used in 1810 was used for this reverse, but this is a different die, explains Dannreuther in his seminal work on America's early gold varieties. Both varieties of 1811 are scarce. "Auction data indicate this variety appears only 25 to 50 percent more often than the previous one [Tall 5]." The NGC census is as follows: Pop 4; 1 finer in 66 .

Historic reference: In the winter of 1811-12, the central Mississippi Valley was struck by three of the most powerful earthquakes in U.S. history. Even today, this region has more earthquakes than any other part of the United States east of the Rocky Mountains.The 400 terrified residents in the town of New Madrid (Missouri) were abruptly awakened by violent shaking and a tremendous roar. It was December 16, 1811, and a powerful earthquake had just struck. This was the first of three magnitude-8 earthquakes and thousands of aftershocks to rock the region that winter. Survivors reported that the earthquakes caused cracks to open in the earth's surface, the ground to roll in visible waves, and large areas of land to sink or rise. The crew of the New Orleans (the first steamboat on the Mississippi, which was on her maiden voyage) reported mooring to an island only to awake in the morning and find that the island had disappeared below the waters of the Mississippi River. Damage was reported as far away as Charleston, South Carolina, and Washington, D.C.
Estimated Value $65,000 - 70,000.
View details and enlarged photos
Unsold
Lot 2852
1834 $5 Capped Head. Plain 4. NGC graded MS-65. A magnificent example of this major U.S. rarity! Boldly struck throughout except for a touch of softness on some of the outer obverse stars as is consistant with all known examples. Less than 40 known in all grades with far fewer auction appearances than the Crosslet 4 variety which in the past, was considered the rarer of the two varieties for the year. Fully lustrous with rich golden-orange mint color. An incredible example of this rare coin.

By 1834, and actually long before, the authorities realized that gold coinage production could not continue as before. The gold content actually exceeded the face value of the coins the U.S. was minting! Congress passed new legislation lowering the weight of all our gold coinage, promoting renewed circulation. The Act of June 28, 1834, which was to take effect on August 1, specified a new weight of 129 grains of standard gold for the half eagle (versus 135 grains for the old tenor coins). The same Act specified that half eagles coined previously were to be receivable at the rate of 94.8 cents per pennyweight, or $5.095 each, close to the actual market value at the time. (At the same time, the Bechtler family, producers of private gold coinage in the Carolinas, adjusted the weight of their own coinage to meet the Federal standard.)

Few examples of the 1834 Capped Head half eagle survive today, and seldom are they found in grades finer than MS63, however this piece is the single finest example that has been seen by both services. It is a very sharply struck, save for several of the star centrils, with fully brilliant, Prooflike surfaces and a light cameo cameo contrast. The surfaces have bright greenish-gold color displaying only a few tiny blemishes. Searching for pedigrees can sometimes be a difficult task, especially when the coin is nice enough to have few visible pedigree markers. A few degrees of clockwise die rotation is also noted. We have handled only a few other high-grade 1834 Capped Head half eagles in the past dozen years, and this example is clearly the finest we have ever offered and the finest known to the grading services Pop 1; none finer at either services thus a candidate for finest known! (PCGS # 8160) .

Historic note: Arno Safran, writing in the November 15, 1993 issues of Coin World describes the problem with keeping the five dollar gold pieces in circulation, and their subsequent rarity:

"Half eagles bearing the Scot-modified Capped Head design (1813-29) and the further modified, smaller-size pieces by Kneass (1829-34) are the scarcest types for this denomination. Most of the mintages were either melted by the government or left the country soon after being released into circulation because miscalculations by Treasury officials regarding the ratio between gold and silver were skewed in favor of the yellow metal."

From 1829 to 1834, explains distinguished author Neil Carothers in his seminal book Fractional Money, published in 1930, the question of currency reform was constantly agitated. Forty years after the establishment of the mint the coinage system was a discreditable failure. There were three elements in the problem, the circulation of bank notes issued by a host of state banks of every degree of financial integrity, the disappearance of gold as the result of an adverse coinage ratio [15 to 1], and the continued circulation of a non-decimal foreign silver coinage [chiefly Spanish and Mexican] of degenerate condition. The bank note question and the problem of gold coinage were, perhaps, of the more fundamental importance, but the problem of the fractional currency was more immediately pressing and more intimately bound up with the customs and daily life of the people.

In June 1834 a coinage bill became law that altered the situation and did nothing to solve the problem of a shortage of small silver coins. This bill's effect lasted the greater part of two decades; until, that is, the gold discoveries of the California gold rush upset the gold to silver balance once more. The essential provision of the bill of 1834 reduced the weight of the standard gold dollar from 24.75 grains of fine metal to 23.2 grain. In effect, this changed the coinage ratio from 15 to 1 to 16.002 to 1. From a legal standpoint the law was a debasement of the currency by approximately 3 percent. From the standpoint of the fractional coinage it was an egregious blunder. By giving gold a higher value as coin than it could command in the arts Congress had deliberately provided for the cessation of silver coinage. It had virtually adopted the gold standard without any provision for a small change currency!
Estimated Value $150,000-UP.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$132,250
Lot 2853
1834 $5 Classic Head. Plain 4. PCGS graded AU-50. Nice mint luster. Quarter eagles and half eagles of the Classic Head type, from dies by William Kneass, were first made in 1834 and with that date, and made their début in circulation in August. They were produced under the provisions of the Mint Act of June 28, 1834 (PCGS # 8171) .
Estimated Value $1,000 - 1,050.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$1,121
Lot 2854
1834 $5 Classic Head. Plain 4. Sharpness of AU-50. Cleaned years ago and now retoning.
Estimated Value $900 - 950.
View details and enlarged photos
Unsold
Lot 2855
1834 $5 Classic Head. Crosslet 4. NGC graded MS-61. A scarce variety. Light golden toning over lustrous surfaces. A very bold strike. There is a slight planchet flake in the right obverse field (as made) which will serve as identifier. Some normal light marks in the reverse field associated with the grade. It is possible that the mint carried over the Crosslet 4 idea from the previous Capped Bust 1834 design, but then decided to go with the Plain 4 format for the rest of this issue since the Plain 4 coins outnumber the Crosslet 4 by a very wide margin.

Distinguishing features include a Fancy 8 in the date, Crosslet 4, where the top of the 4 is distant from hair curl. No berry in branch, no tongue, arrow feather over left edge of 5. Note the low census: Pop 5; 4 finer, 3 in 62, 1 in 64 (PCGS # 8172) .

In summer 1834 the $5 denomination was redesigned by William Kneass, who created what is now known today as the Classic Head style. The new 1834 issue is similar in design to the quarter eagle of the same date. The obverse depicts the head of Miss Liberty facing left, her hair secured by a band inscribed LIBERTY, with stars circling her head, and with the date below. The reverse shows an eagle with a shield on its breast, perched on an olive branch and holding three arrows. The inscription UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, 5 D. surrounds. The motto E PLURIBUS UNUM, used earlier, was discontinued.
Estimated Value $19,000 - 21,000.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$18,400
Lot 2856
1834 $5 Classic Head. Crosslet 4. ANACS graded Details of AU-53. Ex Jewelry. Much rarer than the Plain 4 variety, this is a well struck coin with light golden color throughout.
Estimated Value $2,000 - 2,100.
View details and enlarged photos
Unsold
Lot 2857
1836 $5 Classic Head. Improperly cleaned (PCGS # 8174) .
Estimated Value $400 - 450.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$661
Lot 2858
1838-D $5 Classic Head. NGC graded AU-53. Light golden toning. 20,583 struck. First year of issue at the Dahlonega, Georgia mint. A small mark near the left corner of the shield; a few slight ticks on the jaw. Smooth surfaces. A still lustrous coin with natural gold color that graces the smooth. Amply struck for the date, indeed, about as fine as this date is ever found with only the stars being blunt as occurs on many D and C mint gold Half Eagles in this period. William Kneass designed the $5 Classic Head pieces struck in 1834-38.

According to the government archives, the entire production of coins was produced from a single die pair, thus just one variety is known. In the far-flung numismatic community it is believed that only a handful of survivors can be characterized as Mint State. The presently offered About Uncirculated handily eclipses many that we see offered in similar grades. Pop 8; 52 finer (PCGS # 8178) .
Estimated Value $8,000 - 9,000.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$9,775
Lot 2859
1839-D $5 Liberty. NGC graded AU-58. Obverse mintmark. Light gold toning. 18,939 struck. The 1839-D half eagle is a distinct (and distinctive looking) one-year Type. It displays the Gobrecht-designed Liberty Head with mintmark above the date on the obverse. This head design is a precursor to the one adopted for the 1840-1861 issues, but few are aware there are differences. Also noteworthy is that 1839-D is rarer than the 1838-D, especially in high grades. There may be as few as 25 to 30 in AU with another half dozen or so in Mint condition. The present specimen is a well struck coin. The obverse has nice detail including full stars; on the reverse we see everything is exceptionally sharp. That includes full feathers on the eagle's legs and wingtips, full denticles around. An all-around pleasing AU58 example of this desirable D-mint release. Pop 19; 5 finer (PCGS # 8193) .

1839. Those were the days. A colorful character who has since dropped out of history made front-page news the year of this Half Eagle. In 1839, the first woman horse thief in America published her confessions. Josephine Amelia Perkins, born and raised in England, stole her first horse from her own father for her elopement. Eventually she came to America completely broke, and continued her career of horse-stealing. She herself admitted to being "4 times detected, twice pardoned on account of my sex, once for reasons of supposed insanity, and the 4th and last time, convicted and sentenced to 2 years imprisonment in Madison County jail, Kentucky." (The report doesn't say whether or not she later ran for Congress.) Continuing on the subject of the fair sex, the Mar. 3, 1839, New York Mirror ran with the following as a program for a dinner conversation: "When you are seated next to a lady, you should be only polite during the 1st course; you may be gallant in the 2nd; but you must not be tender till the dessert."
Estimated Value $11,000 - 12,000.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$14,375
Lot 2860
1840 $5 Liberty. NGC graded AU-55. Nice and bold, untoned with traces of reflective surfaces. Scarce. Pop 55; 71 finer (PCGS # 8194) .
Estimated Value $1,000 - 1,050.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$1,323
Lot 2861
1844-C $5 Liberty. NGC graded AU-55. Well struck and nicely toned on both sides. 23,631 pieces struck. Light greenish yellow gold with plenty of brilliance and luster still evident around the devices. Well struck for the date, essentially sharp in nearly all areas. An rarity in all grades, and easily one of the more difficult ones to find in choice condition. As David Akers noted regarding this date and mint: "Specimens in AU or Uncirculated are almost unobtainable."

On the reverse, a small die crack runs from the rim at 10:00 to the tip of the eagle's wing. Another crack, this more prominent, begins at the rim over the first A in AMERICA, horizontally crossing the field and the eagle's wing, ending at a central point on the eagle's neck. Pop 11; 12 finer, 6 in 58, 1 in 60, 2 in 61, 1 in 62, 2 in 63 (PCGS # 8220) .

Story of the Mint fire: According to Breen's Encyclopedia, "a burglar burned down the mint" at Charlotte on July 27, 1844. Author Clair Birdsall gives a more in-depth accounting of the events of that July day in his book titled The United States Branch Mint at Charlotte, North Carolina: Its History and Coinage. An article appeared in the August 1, 1844 edition of the Charlotte Journal, describing the events of the day in some detail. It seems the fire was first discovered in the early morning hours of Saturday, July 27. Mint Superintendent Dr. Green W. Caldwell had not spent Friday, July 26, in his quarters at the mint (as was his custom), but had instead gone to the mountains of Lincoln County for health reasons. His stand-in for the day, unnamed in the article (later determined to be one Mr. Todd), had not stayed at the mint that day either. The fire was discovered early Saturday in the west wing of the mint, near the room housing the coinage presses. According to the article, it was a small fire when first discovered, perhaps just eight-feet square or so, and could easily have been squelched by use of water reservoirs that were in place on the roof of the mint. For some unknown reason, the fire was allowed to burn, with the building "left to the mercy of the flames," as the article noted. The building was nearly completely destroyed, along with most of the machinery and other equipment contained therein. The mint register, bullion, and coins were rescued, however, and spent some time at the Branch Bank of the State of North Carolina in Charlotte. Superintendent Caldwell reportedly lost all his private papers and a goodly sum of money in the blaze.

As for the actual cause of the fire, history is not so clear. There were rumors that a group of college students were seen smoking "segars" on the roof of the mint about 2:00 PM on Friday, July 26, and that a discarded cigar may have been the cause of the conflagration. This was later ruled out as a cause, as workmen sent up to the roof to investigate before the blaze occurred found no smoldering cigar butts. Superintendent Caldwell was convinced that the fire was set on purpose, and intimated that a servant of Burgess S. Gaither, former superintendent of the mint, was to blame for the fire. On August 10, 1844, Calvin, a man slave of Gaither, went to trial for arson. He had been overheard threatening to burn the mint to ashes after his master lost his job there, and so was a primary suspect. Fortunately for Calvin (or unfortunately, as he was a married man), it was proven that he was with his girlfriend at the time of the events at the mint, and he was found innocent of all charges. The judge in the case, Richard M. Pearson, did determine that a trapdoor on the roof of the mint had been left unlatched, and that a person or persons of unknown identity had set the fire in the mint. According to Birdsall: "Superintendent Caldwell accepted the verdict with skepticism and continued to maintain in his correspondence with Mint Director Patterson that his apartment in the mint had been robbed and the fire set to cover up the robbery."
Estimated Value $6,000 - 6,500.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$6,325
Lot 2862
1845 $5 Liberty. PCGS graded MS-62. Nice light yellow toning. Decent luster. Some light contact marks and hairlines. Well struck. 91,051 struck. With virtually no coin collecting activity in America of the 1840s, it is a true test of patience to find even one acceptable Mint State No Motto of this or other dates from the decade. Pop 9; 13 finer (PCGS # 8223) .

In this year, President James K. Polk said in his Inaugural Address: "Melancholy is the condition of that people whose government can be sustained only by a system which periodically transfers large amounts from the labor of the many to the cofflers of the few. On December 29, 1845, Texas was admitted as the 28th State.
Estimated Value $3,000 - 3,200.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Unsold
Lot 2863
1847 $5 Liberty. NGC graded AU-58. Well struck and mostly untoned. Popular No Motto type coin with plenty of lustre still present (PCGS # 8231) .
Estimated Value $500 - 525.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$529
Lot 2864
1852-D $5 Liberty. PCGS graded AU-50. Light toning. 91,584 struck. Lustrous golden fields which have decent overall eye appeal. The typical strike complements this eye-appeal and, some might say, adds to the appearance. We note minor weakness in centers and on most stars, also the rim denticles aren't well defined. Production increased at Dahlonega in the early 1850s, while quality control suffered noticeably on this and the other denominations made there as well. Pop 24; 45 finer (PCGS # 8252) .
Estimated Value $2,100 - 2,200.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$3,105
Lot 2865
1858-S $5 Liberty. NGC graded EF-45. Well struck and untoned. Low mintage date as only 18,600 were struck.

It is important to realize that such pieces have never been connected with any treasure, and thus such recovered wrecks as the S.S. Central America (which sunk the year before, in 1857), and the S.S. Brother Jonathan (which sunk years later in 1864, and included no example of this issue) are not a factor. The survival of the present piece is a matter of rare chance. It could be that years will pass before a comparable offering. Pop 13; 39 finer (PCGS # 8279) .
Estimated Value $1,800 - 1,900.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$2,415
Lot 2866
1859-S $5 Liberty. PCGS graded AU-55. Well struck with attractive golden-orange toning on both sides. First of two 1859-S Half Eagles, and the finer of the two with abundant luster, attractive surfaces, and sharp detail on hair and eagle. Only 13,220 minted. Pop 4; 3 finer (PCGS # 8283) .
Estimated Value $4,500 - 4,800.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$4,600
Lot 2867
1859-S $5 Liberty. NGC graded EF-45. Lightly toned with the friction evenly spread and free from noticeable marks. Virtually all '59-S Half Eagles became well worn. David Akers, who did much research on the series, never saw a coin better than Extremely Fine, and only two or three Extremely Fine pieces were seen (which is an important consideration for bidding). Only 13,220 struck. Pop 3; 21 finer (PCGS # 8283) .
Estimated Value $2,800 - 2,900.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$2,645
Lot 2868
1861-S $5 Liberty. NGC graded AU-58. Well struck and quite pleasing with lovely golden-orange toning, though featuring normal surface abrasions. A greatly underrated rarity from our westernmost mint, one of the few survivors of the date. David Akers noted: "Most known specimens (there aren't really very many) are only Fine or VF." He further wrote that the 1861-S is "Grossly underrated and underpriced for its rarity." These comments still ring true today; the finest examples of the date certified by PCGS are only graded AU-58, with none finer. Only 18,000 struck. Pop 8; none finer (PCGS # 8291) .
Estimated Value $10,000 - 11,000.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$12,075
Lot 2869
1866-S $5 Liberty. With motto. NGC graded EF-45. Lightly toned, normal field abrasions. Only 9,000 were struck. A rare date that usually is seen in well worn grades. Pop 11; 14 finer (PCGS # 8312) .
Estimated Value $2,000 - 2,100.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$1,984
Lot 2870
1871 $5 Liberty. NGC graded AU-58. Well struck with pleasing golden toning over reflective surfaces on both sides. A low-mintage rarity; just 3,200 business strikes of the date were produced. Indeed, David Akers knew of just two examples of the date in AU, stating also that the date was probably unknown in Mint State, although in the 30 years since publication of his books, a handful of new specimens surfaces and received third-party grades. Today the NGC census in AU58 is: Pop 18; 4 finer (PCGS # 8322) .
Estimated Value $4,000 - 4,400.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$4,888
Lot 2871
1873 $5 Liberty. Open 3. NGC graded AU-55. Lightly toned (PCGS # 8328) .
Estimated Value $325 - 350.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$403
Lot 2872
1874 $5 Liberty. PCGS graded AU-55. Pleasing shades of light golden toning. Luster still rests within the protected areas, some marks in the field and a shallow depression on the chin. A rare low mintage date as a mere 3,488 were minted. Well worth investigating. Pop 10; 6 finer (PCGS # 8333) .
Estimated Value $2,200 - 2,400.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$2,358
Lot 2873
1878-CC $5 Liberty. VF-25. Well struck and pleasing for the grade. We note some very minor hairlines scattered about and all, lightly toned. One of the key issues to the "CC" series and seldom encountered in higher grades. Only 9,054 struck.
Estimated Value $1,500 - 1,600.
The Estate of Winthrop A. Haviland, Jr.

View details and enlarged photos
Realized
$4,140
Lot 2874
  1881 and 1885-S $5 Liberty Gold Coins. ANACS graded both MS-61. Lot of 2 coins.
Estimated Value $650 - 675.
View details
Realized
$863
Lot 2875
1881 $5 Liberty. NGC graded MS-63. Well struck and untoned (PCGS # 8354) .
Estimated Value $650 - 700.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Unsold
Lot 2876
1881 $5 Liberty. NGC graded MS-63. Untoned, a couple of small marks above the date, choice and frosty (PCGS # 8354) .
Estimated Value $650 - 700.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Unsold
Lot 2877
1881 $5 Liberty. NGC graded MS-61. Lustrous (PCGS # 8354) .
Estimated Value $375 - 400.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$477
Lot 2878
1881 $5. Our grade is MS62 with a few reverse digs. Nicely toned.
Estimated Value $300 - 325.
View details and enlarged photos
Realized
$426
Lot 2879
1886 $5 Liberty. NGC graded AU-58 GSA. Nicely toned (PCGS # 8369) .
Estimated Value $325 - 350.
The Estate of Winthrop A. Haviland, Jr.

View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$483
Lot 2880
1886-S $5 Liberty. ANACS graded MS-64. Frosty (PCGS # 8370) .
Estimated Value $800 - 850.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$920
Lot 2881
1886-S $5 Liberty. MS-63. A lovely frosty mint specimen, delicately toned. A last minute consignment, too late to send to the services.
Estimated Value $600 - 650.
The Fedorchuk Estate.

View details and enlarged photos
Realized
$690
Lot 2882
1886-S $5 Liberty. ANACS graded MS-63. Well struck (PCGS # 8370) .
Estimated Value $500 - 550.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$633
Lot 2883
1887-S $5 Liberty. PCGS graded MS-63. Frosty; well struck on the main devices including all stars. Pop 244; 48 finer (PCGS # 8371) .
Estimated Value $650 - 700.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$863
Lot 2884
1887-S $5 Liberty. NGC graded MS-63. Attractive rose-golden toning. Pop 369; 70 finer (PCGS # 8371) .
Estimated Value $650 - 700.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Unsold
Lot 2885
1893-S $5 Liberty. PCGS graded MS-66 PQ. CAC Approved. Housed in an Old Green Holder. The finest known. A magnificent choice gem half eagle. Loaded with dazzling cartwheel mint bloom. This coin possesses an astonishing degree of eye appeal. Amazing pizzazz! A nice bold strike. Should be graded MS67. This may be a fairly available date in lower grades, but the 1893-S becomes a major rarity once the Gem level is breached (MS65 and higher). The present lively example displays full striking strength, with crisp detail aplenty throughout. The surfaces are smooth and lustrous. The luster includes oceans of vibrant golden frost drenching each side. Meanwhile, no obvious are present, although a few tiny surface ticks that are within the qualifications for the Gem 66 grade but must be seen under close inspection. Certainly the prettiest Gem of this date that exists, and with a provenance to die for. A Half Eagle destined for the finest of collection. Pop 1; none finer at PCGS (PCGS # 8386) .
Estimated Value $10,000 - 15,000.
Ex: Eliasberg Collection.

View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$31,050
Lot 2886
1893-S $5 Liberty. PCGS graded MS-63. Nice light golden toning with choice luster everywhere plus a crisp, bold strike. Pop 95; 27 finer, 24 in 64, 2 in 65, 1 in 66 (PCGS # 8386) .
Estimated Value $800 - 850.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$978
Lot 2887
1894 $5 Liberty. NGC graded MS-63. Well struck and mostly untoned. Pop 561; 108 finer (PCGS # 8387) .
Estimated Value $650 - 700.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Unsold
Lot 2888
1894 $5 Liberty. NGC graded MS-63. A hint of light toning starting to form. Pop 561; 108 finer (PCGS # 8387) .
Estimated Value $650 - 700.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Unsold
Lot 2889
1895 $5 Liberty. ANACS graded MS-64. Well struck (PCGS # 8390) .
Estimated Value $800 - 850.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$863
Lot 2890
1895 $5 Liberty. ANACS graded MS-64. Frosty (PCGS # 8390) .
Estimated Value $800 - 850.
View details and enlarged photos
Check results on similar lots
Realized
$863
Lot 2891
  1895 $5 Liberty. ANACS graded both MS-62. Lot of 2 coins (PCGS # 8390) .
Estimated Value $700 - 750.
View details

Check results on similar lots
Realized
$920



Page 1 of 3
Previous Previous   1 | 2 | 3   Next Next
Go to page




Home | Current Sale | Calendar of Events | Bidding | Consign | About Us | Contact | Archives | Log In

US Coins & Currency | World & Ancient Coins | Manuscripts & Collectibles | Bonded CA Auctioneers No. 3S9543300
11400 W. Olympic Blvd, Suite 800, Los Angeles CA 90064 | 310. 551.2646 ph | 310.551.2626 fx | 800.978.2646 toll free

© 2011 Ira & Larry Goldberg Coins & Collectibles, All Rights Reserved
info@goldbergcoins.com