Goldberg Coins and Collectibles

Sale 48

Lot 1737

1855 Wass, Molitor & Co. (San Francisco) $50 Gold. PCGS graded EF-45. A very pleasing example for the grade and all lightly toned. A bold example of this history $50 denomination with strong underlying presence due to the originality and freedom from problems. Nicely struck, indeed completely so, with the surfaces close enough to choice to where special mention is merited. Indeed, the surface originality on this coin easily rivals that of the few others that reach the auction scene from time to time.

It was 1852 before Wass and Molitor, trained in metallurgy in Germany and their native Hungary, began striking gold coins. Many of the lesser California gold issuers -- the Dubosq, Schultz, Dunbar, and Baldwin -- had been forced out of business when their underweight coins were exposed in 1851. Wass, Molitor's production consisted of the expected coins: five dollar and ten dollar pieces and later twenty dollar and fifty dollar pieces, all of which were urgently required for commerce in the days before a functioning Federal mint. The coins were of full weight and fineness, they were, with the Moffat and Humbert-Assay Office pieces, among the most widely accepted in the western part of the country. Pop 8; 11 finer (PCGS # 10363) .
Estimated Value $45,000 - 50,000.

Realized $48,875

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