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MB 40 Catalogue
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Coins from MB Auction 56  

* Note: Auctions prior to #42, do not show true number of bids. Displays as "1".
Lot # Date Variety Rarity Grade Description # of Bids * Hammer Price Maximum Bid Total Price Photos
1 1807 Large Stars O.114 R.3 PCGS AU 58 CAC Ex Dell Loy Hansen   Cartwheel luster dazzles the eye on this brilliant, untoned specimen.  Early die state.  The strike is better than average, showing slight softness in the curls and drapery lines.  Friction is confined to the high points.  In all, a virtual twin to the PCGS AU 58 example offered in MB 51, Feb. 2021, lot 3 @ $14,912.  The Osborne coin comes from the celebrated collection of Utah businessman Dell Loy Hansen.  Legend offered it in its May 2019 sale, where lot 314 brought $9,400 – a steal in your cataloguer’s estimation.  Tim acquired it shortly thereafter in a private transaction with David Lawrence R.C.  For many bust half devotees this 1807 would be the crowing jewel in his or her collection.

Estimate: $10,000 to $15,000
1 $9,000 $9,000 $9,900  
2 1808 O.103 R.1 PCGS AU 58 CAC Pale gold blankets this fully lustrous 1808.  A toning spot accents the outside of the eagle’s right wing.  Liberty’s curls are minutely detailed – important on this date, known for erratic strikes.  A splash of iridescent turquoise encases the cap, further enhancing the eye appeal.  Tim has been the steward of this coin since 1990 when he purchased it from Dave Olmstead of Alpine Numismatics.  

Estimate: $3,800 to $4,500
2 $3,300 $4,000 $3,630  
3 1809 O.105 R.2 PCGS AU 58 CAC Richly toned in iridescent shades of antique grey, rose, turquoise and gold.  Smooth surfaces, cartwheel luster, trivial weakness in the left wing spawned an 1809 with champion eye appeal.  Tim persuaded Dr. Tom Sears to sell him the coin in December 2014, a welcome Christmas present.  

Estimate: $2,000 to $2,500
12 $3,153 $3,500 $3,468  
4 1810 O.103 R.2 PCGS AU 55 CAC An awe-inspiring rainbow of iridescent colors, aglow with underlying luster.  But for typical striking weakness at Liberty’s chin the coin would grade 58 or 58+.  A “wow” coin for those seeking toned beauties.  Osborne found this treasure buried in a 2015 Heritage Internet sale, where it brought $2,350.  

: $2,000 and up
17 $4,486 $4,500 $4,935  
5 1810 O.104a R.1 PCGS AU 58 CAC A delicate halo of gold frames the lightly toned centers.  Caky luster throughout, with friction confined to Liberty’s cheek, lower neck and ribbon.  Weak reverse rims are expected on later die states of this marriage.  Last offered in Heritage’s January 2011 FUN Show sale.  

Estimate: $2,300 to $3,000
7 $2,850 $3,057 $3,135  
6 1811 Small 8 O.106 R.3 PCGS AU 58 CAC Ex Tom Palmer  Silver-grey, infused with pastel gold.  Boisterous luster, suggesting minimal if any actual circulation.  From the magnificent Redbook collection of Tom Palmer.  My slideshow presentations as well as the video on Capped Bust Halves produced by David Lisot featured capped bust halves from Tom’s collection.  In 2008 I purchased his collection intact.  Tim Osborne found this 1811 to his liking.  So will the next owner.  Tom sent me an email from his Florida home on June 23, 2023, offering this reminder: I bought this beauty in November 1984 from Stack's for $300. They described it as choice AU.  It looks as good as ever!  Tom

Estimate:  $1,800 to $2,500
6 $2,300 $2,300 $2,530  
7 1812 O.104a R.1 PCGS AU 55 Unbroken, blinding luster.  A whisper of friction on the portrait.  AU 55?  Gimme a break!  Most AU 58s are not this nice.  The only possible explanation is the late die state, hallmarked by shallow dentils.  But have a look at Liberty’s curls.  Nice!  Purchased raw from your cataloguer in March 1989 as “choice AU.”  

Estimate:  $1,250 to $1,750
9 $1,400 $2,000 $1,540  
8 1813 O.103 R.1 PCGS AU 55 CAC Original pale gold patina with immaculate surfaces.  Virtually full luster.  Light friction on the portrait.  The double profile is reasonably common on 1813s.  A decent strike completes the résumé for this high-end coin.  Tim found it at Duncan Lee’s bourse table during the July 1997 ANA in NYC.  

Estimate:  $1,300 to $1,700
12 $2,380 $2,600 $2,618  
9 1813 O.108a R.4 PCGS AU 55 CAC Antique grey with generous helpings of iridescent turquoise and gold.  Softer impression than the preceding O.103. Exuberant luster bathes the fields and devices.  Double profile at Liberty’s chin.  Acquired in June 2001 via private treaty.  Very scarce die state.  The last similarly graded example to appear at auction brought $2,366 in July 2022.  

Estimate: $1,800 to $2,200
4 $2,051 $3,000 $2,256  
10 1814 O.107 R.2 PCGS AU 58 Grey-gold toning enlivens the cartwheel luster.  Faint drift marks (as made) blend with the toning.  Early die state with full dentils.  The die pair is best known for its use on a pair of platinum patterns from 1814, J.44.  From Heritage’s January 2011 FUN Show Sale, featuring the important die variety collection of Troy Nelson (Allgood Collection).  

Estimate:  $2,000 to $2,500
3 $2,100 $2,400 $2,310  
11 1817 O.110a R.2 PCGS AU 58 CAC Luminous pale amber toning, especially vibrant through the stars and legend.  Eye-appeal is the watchword for this handsome 1817.  An August 2001 purchase from Alpine Numismatics.  

Estimate: $2,200 to $2,700
12 $3,322 $4,000 $3,654  
12 1818 O.111 R.1 PCGS AU 58 CAC Another beautifully toned early date.  The smooth, lustrous surfaces are blanketed with an even coat of radiant gold toning.  Just whispers of friction on the devices.  Tim found this little gem near his home in Louisiana back in June 1991.  

Estimate: $2,000 to $2,500
5 $2,367 $2,500 $2,604  
13 1819/8 Large 9 O.102 R.1 PCGS AU 58 Lightly toned centers, flanked by a ring of iridescent pastel copper.  Well struck with lovely surfaces, though bold luster is the calling-card for this first-rate example of the overdate.  

Estimate: $2,200 to $2,700
6 $2,650 $2,750 $2,915  
14 1820 Large Date, Sq. 2 w/ Knob O.105 R.1 PCGS AU 58 Antique grey toning, infused with pale gold, darker at the rims.  Decent luster and strike.  A few ticks from short-term circulation require a loupe to see.  This low mintage date has been my favorite from the time I was introduced to the series.  Tim found it in my bourse case during the January 1994 FUN Show.  

Estimate: $2,500 to $3,000
9 $2,851 $3,000 $3,136  
15 1820 Large Date, Sq. 2 No Knob O.108 R.2 PCGS AU 58 Delicate steel-grey toning with hints of prooflike surfaces.  The strike is a bit sharper than the preceding O.105.  All 13 stars display center points.  1820s are so tough to find at this level.  From the late Steve Estes, during the August 1998 ANA Convention in Portland.  

Estimate:  $2,500 to $3,000
5 $2,600 $2,600 $2,860  
16 1821 O.106 R.1 PCGS AU 58 Ex Elton Dosier and Dr. Charles Link   A veil of subtle gold encases this charming 1821.  Unbroken, vibrant luster befits the grade.  The strike is absolutely first rate.  Minuscule signs of contact must account for the grade.  The coin never entered circulation.  This was Elton Dosier’s set piece, offered in MB 22, lot 39, back in September 1998, a year after Elton died.  The coin later passed to Dr. Charles Link who sold or traded it to Tim Osborne in February 2010.  

Estimate: $1,600 to $2,000
9 $1,800 $2,000 $1,980  
17 1822 O.113 R.3 PCGS AU 58 CAC From Mail Bid Sale No. 34, August 2009, lot 148, where Tim prevailed at $1,642.  The CAC sticker is a recent addition.  Album toning through the left stars, extending into the field.  Nice luster, a good strike and plenty of eye appeal.  

Estimate:  $1,300 to $1,700
20 $2,828 $3,000 $3,111  
18 1823 O.104 R.2 PCGS AU 55 Heavy double profile.  Original, somewhat spotty silver-grey toning.  Plenty of luster for the grade.  Mark-free surfaces.  From Dave Kahn, privately, in May 2021.  

Estimate: $650 to $850
7 $525 $560 $578  
19 1824 O.107 R.3 PCGS AU 58 From my January 1994 FUN Show Sale, lot 94, where I offered the following description.  Liquid cartwheel luster.  Light rose toning through the stars.  A pretty one!  Tim agreed and still does.  His consignment note is a simple “NICE!”  

Estimate: $850 to $1,100
18 $1,650 $2,551 $1,815  
20 1825 O.114 R.1 PCGS AU 58 CAC Meyer provenance noted on the PCGS label.  Blinding luster and a sharp strike hallmark the coin.  Friction confined to Liberty’s cheek and breast.  Exceptionally nice surfaces.  Meyer acquired the coin from your cataloguer during the 1987 ANA Convention in Atlanta.  Tim found it in Harry Laibstain’s bourse case at the August 2008 ANA Convention in Baltimore.  

Estimate: $900 to $1,200
20 $2,600 $2,700 $2,860  
21 1826 O.120 R.4+ PCGS AU 58 Another lustrous, well struck bust half.  Iridescent album toning immediately grabs the eye.  The reverse appears uncirculated, the obverse with but a trace of friction.  From Alpine Numismatics, July 2001, before the scarcity of the die pair was well recognized.  

Estimate: $900 to $1,200
19 $2,100 $2,200 $2,310  
22 1827 Sq. Base 2 O.104 R.1 PCGS AU 58 CAC Classic “grey dirt.”  Wholly original, with lovely surfaces and booming luster under the protective steel-grey patina.  A common marriage from a year that features 49 known die pairs.  The quality, however, is anything but common.  Acquired at the 2013 FUN Show in a trade with Dr. Charles Link.

Estimate: $950 to $1,300
10 $2,600 $3,000 $2,860  
23 1828 Curl 2, No Knob O.103 R.2 PCGS AU 58 Brilliant, untoned with eye-catching unbroken luster.  Choice surfaces and well struck to boot.   A private acquisition from Dr. Charles Link in May of 2013.

Estimate: $900 to $1,200
6 $875 $900 $963  
24 1828 Sq. Base 2, Sm.8s, Lg. Lets O.122 R.3 PCGS AU 58 Ex Gehring Prouty   Another beautifully struck 1828.  Perhaps a hint of softness at the lower drapery lines.  Liberty’s curls are exquisitely detailed.  Full luster glorifies the untoned surfaces.  (A toning spot lies right of the date.)  Early die state.  The die break between stars 5-6 has just appeared.  Tim was Gehring Prouty’s closest friend in the BHNC.  I awarded Tim first choice of up to 20 coins from the Prouty Collection at the 2000 ANA Convention in Philadelphia.  He selected this and 19 others from the 800+ bust halves available to him.  

Estimate: $950 to $1,250
7 $1,250 $1,574 $1,375  
25 1829 O.113 R.4- PCGS AU 58 CAC Beautifully toned in a panoply of colors familiar to those who enjoy tropical sunsets.  Luster glows under the rich patina.  Color enthusiasts will converge as bids roll in on this pretty coin.  Tim confesses that he lost his record of purchase.  He had no difficulty, however, in awarding the coin an “A” for eye appeal.  

Estimate: $1,100 to $1,500
19 $2,560 $2,700 $2,816  
26 1830 Small 0 O.118 R.4- PCGS AU 58 The stars and legend are encased in fireworks.  Turquoise dominates the halo.  Rose, gold and copper spark the lustrous centers.  Despite a spiderweb thin hairline in the left obverse field this is a “Wow” coin, guaranteed to take away your breath.  Tim picked it up from BHNC clubmate Dr. Tom Sears in October 2014.  How could he resist?  

Estimate: $900 to $1,200
17 $2,300 $2,675 $2,530  
27 1830 Large 0 O.122 R.1 PCGS AU 58 CAC Ex Gehring Prouty and Dr. Charles Link   Pale gold toning (kraft envelope storage?) graces the fully lustrous surfaces.  Having passed through the collections of Gehring Prouty and Dr. Link it is no surprise that the coin offers first rate eye appeal.  Tim acquired it from Dr. Link in August 2012.  

Estimate: $950 to $1,200
3 $975 $2,000 $1,072  
28 1831 O.115 R.4 PCGS AU 58 CAC An absolute, unfettered knockout!  This coin and the earlier 1829 O.113, lot 25, are from the same mold, even sharing an R.4 rarity rating.  A Wayte Raymond holder was undoubtedly in this coin’s past.  Captivating iridescence highlights the stars and legend; the pale rose centers glow with underlying luster.  Tim got it right when he offered a one-word description on his consignment sheet – WOW!  A private acquisition from the late Stu Keen in September 1993.   

Estimate: $1,000 to $1,300
20 $2,650 $2,650 $2,915  
29 1832 O.103 R.1 PCGS AU 58+ CAC Struck from a deadly common pair of dies, this 1832 nonetheless sets itself apart from hoi polloi.  Note first the strike.  Quite remarkable for the date.  The surfaces are immaculate.  Luster is unbroken.  A lovely gloss of amber toning fine tunes the eye appeal.  You must help me find the rub on this “AU” coin.  A FUN Show acquisition in January 2013.  

Estimate: $950 to $1,200
12 $2,100 $2,100 $2,310  
30 1833 O.106 R.2 PCGS AU 58 CAC Yet another late date for the connoisseur.  There is no disputing traces of friction on the cheek.  All else screams MS 63 or better.  The strike, toning and vibrant luster leave nothing to be desired.  An ancient fingerprint crosses UNITED.  It blends with the toning, assuring us that no one has tried to “improve” this original coin.  Nice!  From Alpine Numismatics in February 1999.  

Estimate: $950 to $1,200
1 $750 $900 $825  
31 1834 Lg. Date, Sm. Lets O.104 R.2 PCGS AU 58 A pastel halo of copper frames the beautifully struck centers.  Blinding luster greets the eye – at arm’s length and from across the room.  Just a whisper of rub on the cheek.  Pilfered from my bourse case at the January 1994 FUN Show.  

Estimate: $900 to $1,200
7 $1,455 $2,000 $1,601  
32 1834 Sm. Date & Lets O.111 R.1 PCGS AU 58 Al Overton christened this die pair the Child’s Head variety.  Pale gold secondary toning contributes to the charming eye appeal.  The strike is exceptional.  Take a moment to examine the rims, dentils, stars and finely detailed central devices.  From Dave Kahn, November 2021.  

Estimate: $800 to $1,000
4 $925 $1,800 $1,018  
33 1835 O.107 R.1 PCGS AU 58 CAC A grey dirt masterpiece that might have graded anywhere from 58 to 62.  Bold luster forces its way through the protective patina.  Some weakness in the motto, otherwise decently struck.  From your cataloguer, October 1996.  

Estimate: $800 to $1,000
7 $875 $1,000 $963  
34 1836 O.103 R.4- PCGS AU 58 Ex Don Frederick and Dr. Charles Link   Lightly toned with flashy luster.  Dr. Link was the winning bidder at the Heritage sale of Frederick’s capped bust halves in April 2010 (lot 3345 @ $1,840), undoubtedly impressed by the full strike on this scarce die pair.  Frederick’s handwritten, unabashed personal notes accompany the lot.  MS 65+ gem prooflike first strike or “specimen” strike.  A fantastically sharp strike for this always poorly struck die variety.  Tim acquired the piece in a trade with Dr. Link in November 2011.  

Estimate: $850 to $1,150
13 $1,336 $2,000 $1,470  
35 1836 O.111 R.4- PCGS AU 58 Ex John Crowley   Auburn toning, obverse and reverse, the legend surrounded by iridescent blue and turquoise.  Luster is more subdued than other AU 58s in the Osborne collection.  The lovely toning and originality of the coin provide adequate compensation.  From your cataloguer at the Atlanta ANA Convention in 2001, part of the notable die variety set assembled by John Crowley.  

Estimate: $850 to $1,150
6 $1,775 $1,950 $1,953  
36 1837 Reeded Edge GR-14 R.1 PCGS AU 58 CAC Ex Howard Sharfman   Here is the set piece in Howard Sharfman’s remarkable Everyman Registry Set of Capped Bust Half-Dollars.  Sharfman sold his set to me not long before the January 2019 FUN Show.  This gorgeous 1837 did not last long.  Tim acquired it during the show.  Golden-brown toning.  The centers are lighter, infused with splashes of pale gold.  Luster radiates throughout.  Nice coin for the type collector.  

Estimate: $1,000 to $1,300
18 $2,302 $2,456 $2,532  
37 1838 Reeded Edge GR-8 R.4 PCGS AU 58 Raucous cobalt blue with copper and gold iridescence through the legend.  The coin is original and virtually uncirculated.  My guess is that the toning developed while it rested for decades in a wooden drawer or leather pouch.  You will love the fully struck devices.  From Lance Keigwin via your cataloguer, January 2019.  

Estimate: $1,000 to $1,300
5 $1,150 $1,300 $1,265  
38 1839 Reeded Edge GR-5 R.2 PCGS AU 58 Ex Richard Graham   Delicate antique grey centers, the margins with iridescent copper, smoky grey and gold.  Fully struck and lustrous, an ideal coin for the date or type collector.  Graham, of course, is the author of the standard reference work on the reeded edge series.  Dave Kahn brokered his collection.  Tim purchased the coin from Kahn at the 2021 ANA Convention in Chicago.  

Estimate: $1,150 to $1,500
8 $2,000 $2,000 $2,200  
39 1839-O Reeded Edge GR-1 R.1 PCGS AU 58 CAC The Holy Grail for those who collect the reeded edge series.  (Yes, in this grade, more valuable than an 1836; check your AMBPR.  Allow me to ignore the 1838-O.)  Last appearing in my January 2019 price list of Howard Sharfman’s top rated Registry Set.  Tim was the first to act.  A crust of pale gold bespeaks originality.  Luster smolders under the toning.  The coin left short-term circulation unscathed.  Its surfaces befit the grade.  Mid to late die state, with an assortment of die breaks, obverse and reverse.  Honor the urge to stretch for this charismatic issue of the New Orleans Mint.  

Estimate: $7,500 and up
2 $7,000 $7,000 $7,700  
40 1795 Y over Star O.121 R.4+ PCGS XF 45 CAC Ex Robinson S. Brown, Jr. and Steven Nomura.   Glossy grey and cobalt toning, with occasional iridescent highlights at the stars and rims.  A 16th star was inadvertently punched into the working die where the Y in LIBERTY belongs.  The engraver had to smooth the area before adding the Y.  Two distinct rays of the underlying star survived the effort.  The coin is nicely impressed with a balanced strike.  Minor circulation ticks are consistent with the grade.  Robbie Brown* acquired the coin from Jack Beymer in 1992.  Brown consigned his notable die variety collection to me in 1995.  This coin was lot 7 in MB 14, April 29, 1995 (as NGC XF 45), bringing $4,070.  Ah, the good old days!  It next appeared in Heritage’s April 2012 Central States Sale, lot 4363, selling for $11,500.  Steve Nomura was the happy buyer when Heritage again offered the coin in its June 2015 Long Beach Sale.  Lot 3948, still in its NGC capsule (with a fresh CAC sticker), brought $14,100.  Steve crossed the coin to PCGS and recovered the green sticker.

Estimate: $10,000 to $15,000

*Brown is best known for having twice assembled a complete set of Large Cents by Sheldon varieties.  He was CEO of Brown-Forman Corp.  Think of Jack Daniels and other spirits.
6 $16,055 $22,500 $17,660  
41 1808 O.108 R.3 PCGS AU 53 CAC An unusually handsome, well struck 1808.  Note the detail in the central devices, stars and dentils.  Lovely toning and soft underlying luster are bonuses.  A small rim bruise beneath star 13 fails to detract from the exceptional eye-appeal.  From the Kings Park Collection.  

Estimate: $1,600 to $2,000
2 $1,750 $2,000 $1,925  
42 1808 O.108a R.3 PCGS AU 55 CAC A stunning coin!  I sent it to CAC, expecting a gold sticker to be its reward.  No matter.  The glorious toning speaks for itself.  The surfaces and luster are a delight.  Here is an original coin, essentially without faults.  I anticipate runaway bidding.   From an old time collection, many years off the market.  

Estimate: $2,200 and up
27 $5,360 $6,200 $5,896  
43 1809 XXX Edge O.108a R.4+ PCGS VF 35 This is a VERY tough die pair, on a par with the O.110 and some R.5 rated 1809s.  High grade examples hardly exist.  Light grey centers, darker at the rims with iridescent highlights through most of the legend.  Early die state: the telltale die break at star 4 barely shows.  From the Kings Park Collection.  

Estimate: $800 to $1,200
5 $850 $1,300 $935  
44 1810 O.107a R.4 PCGS AU 55 Antique grey with iridescent toning at the rims.  Some weakness at the reverse dentils.  The centers are decently impressed.  Luster befits the assigned grade.  Superior eye-appeal.  From the Kings Park Collection.  

Estimate: $1,500 to $2,000
3 $1,850 $2,800 $2,035  
45 1810 O.108 R.3 PCGS AU 58 CAC Pale gold, set afire by cartwheel luster.  Smooth surfaces are interrupted only by a bisecting die break from 6 to 12 on the reverse and a swirling die break through UNITED STATES.  The few high grade 1810s in CAC-approved holders are mostly O.101, 102 or 103.  Here is a magnificent exception.  From an old time collection.  

Estimate: $2,500 to $3,500
9 $4,200 $5,845 $4,620  
46 1811/10 O.102 R.4 PCGS AU 55 First and foremost – this 1811/10 is NOT the common O.101, an R.1 die pair.  High grade examples of the O.102 are notoriously difficult to find.  Virtually full luster graces the lightly toned surfaces of this offering.  Soft rims and minor striking weaknesses are hallmarks of the marriage.  Both dies saw prior use: the obverse on the O.101, the reverse on the O.103.  From an old time collection.  

Estimate: $2,000 to $3,000
4 $2,850 $4,100 $3,135  
47 1811 Small 8 O.110 R.1 PCGS AU 55 A rainbow of iridescent album toning circles the stars.  Pale auburn toning, lighter on the reverse, adorns the centers.  This nicely impressed coin will attract collectors who chase coins with attractive toning.  From the Kings Park Collection.  

Estimate: $1,100 to $1,300
16 $1,500 $1,500 $1,650  
48 1811 Small 8 O.110a R.1 PCGS AU 58 Fully struck despite the later die-state.  Drapery, cap, curls, clasp, feathers and claws are razor sharp.  Bold luster with light amber toning through the stars and legend.  Nice coin for the date, Red Book or type collector.  

Estimate: $1,400 to $1,800
6 $1,550 $1,664 $1,705  
49 1812/1 Small 8 O.102 R.1 PCGS AU 53 Similar toning to the earlier 1811 Small 8, lot 47, and from the same collection.  Better struck than most of this issue.  Soft luster enhances the iridescent colors.  From the Kings Park Collection.

Estimate: $1,300 to $1,700
12 $2,325 $2,425 $2,558  
50 1812 Single Leaf O.110b R.6 PCGS F.15 Not pretty but assuredly RARE.  The 1812 Single Leaf was first described over 30 years ago.  Maybe 20 examples have surfaced, nearly all in modest or low grade, many with damage.  The PCGS F.15 in MB 51, lot 23, brought $6,080 two years ago.  This example has a bit more wear and might have benefitted from a little soap and water before encapsulation.  Let’s just say it did what it was supposed to do – circulate – and note that it looks original!  If you already have single leaf versions of the 1814 [O.105a] and 1817 [O.106a] you and many, many others need this one to complete your set.  

Estimate: $3,000 and up
0 $0 $0 Not Sold  
51 1814/3 O.101a R.1 PCGS AU 58 Startling, fluorescent royal blue and golden toning.  Reasonably early die state with a magnificent strike.  Still, it is the colorful patina that will attract a throng of bidders to this lot.  There aren’t many 1814/3s with the eye-appeal seen here.  From the Kings Park Collection.  

Estimate: $3,500 to $4,500
10 $5,800 $7,150 $6,380  
52 1818 O.105 R.4+ PCGS AU 53 A worn obverse die (first used on the O.106) explains weakness in Liberty’s curls.  Colorful toning provides adequate compensation.  Pastel shades of rose and gold intermingle with subtle to vibrant splashes of iridescent turquoise.  In all, a feast for the eye – on an R.4+ die pair!  From the Kings Park Collection.  

Estimate: $1,200 to $1,500
5 $2,050 $2,100 $2,255  
53 1818 O.109 R.3 PCGS AU 53 CAC The obverse presents much-favored album toning, iridescent borders fading to pale gold in the center.  The reverse is evenly toned in deep antique grey, lighter on the high points.  The overall eye-appeal earned this one a green CAC sticker.  From the Kings Park Collection.  

Estimate: $800 to $1,100
4 $828 $900 $911  
54 1818 O.111 R.1 PCGS AU 58 CAC Ex Charlton E. Meyer, Jr.   Even pastel gold toning signals storage in a kraft envelope.  When I acquired the Meyer Collection in 2008 I graded the coin MS 63 and valued it accordingly.  I continue to have trouble finding any rub on this fully lustrous, sharply struck coin.  Meyer acquired it (raw) in an August 1987 Coin Galleries Sale, lot 2116, where offered as “choice uncirculated.”  I expect a battle for this prize 1818.  From the Kings Park Collection.

Estimate: $1,800 and up
15 $3,000 $3,066 $3,300  
55 1818 O.113 R.4 PCGS AU 55 The double profile at Liberty’s nose and chin is unusual on this date.  A blanket of light auburn toning developed ages ago.  Soft luster and smooth surfaces confirm the AU designation.  A few bits of crud lie inside the vertical stripes on the shield.  Similarly PCGS graded examples of this scarce die pair from the Osborne and Meyer collections brought $1,760 and $2,393 last year.  

Estimate: $1,500 to $1,800
4 $2,025 $2,500 $2,228  
56 1818 O.115a R.4 PCGS XF 45 CAC Late die state, the magnificent obverse die break in full flower.  Even wear, with natural grey toning and flickers of luster in protected areas.  An altogether wholesome example of this charismatic – and scarce – die pair.  From the King’s Park Collection.  

Estimate: $1,800 to $2,200
12 $4,501 $4,501 $4,951  
57 1819 O.111 R.3 PCGS AU 55 A faint halo of album toning surrounds the brilliant, untoned centers.  Jaunty luster would befit an AU 58.  This is an underrated date in high grade.   

Estimate: $900 to $1,300
9 $1,200 $1,600 $1,320  
58 1821 O.101a R.1 PCGS AU 55 CAC Color, color, color.  Too many to list.  Imagine a blend of vibrant hues on an artist’s palette.  The strike, surfaces and luster match expectations for the assigned grade.  The eye-appeal, however, is unmatched.  In a word, WOWFrom the Kings Park Collection.  

Estimate: $1,500 and up
9 $2,508 $3,263 $2,759  
59 1822 O.109 R.3 PCGS AU 55 A nicely detailed, untoned 1822 that greets the eye with a blast of luster – enough to justify an AU 58 designation.  No marks of concern, just trivial signs of circulation.  

Estimate: $600 to $800
14 $825 $825 $908  
60 1823 Patched 3 O.101a R.1 PCGS AU 58 CAC An exceptionally well struck example.  Friction confined to Liberty’s cheek.  Bottomless luster rolls through the fields and devices.  The surfaces are virtually pristine, displaying no signs of actual circulation.  A prize for the advanced Red Book collector.  From the Kings Park Collection.  

Estimate: $3,500 to $4,200
8 $4,200 $5,000 $4,620  
61 1823 O.104 R.2 PCGS AU 55 Delicate pale gold toning enhances the bold cartwheel luster.  Wonderfully smooth surfaces.  The double profile is reasonably common on this date.   

Estimate: $750 to $900
9 $826 $876 $909  
62 1823 O.104 R.2 PCGS AU 53 CAC Same die pair as lot 61, also sporting a distinct double profile.  The attractive toning features antique grey and iridescent crimson.  A pretty coin that had no trouble earning its green CAC sticker.  From the Kings Park Collection.

Estimate: $500 to $700
2 $470 $536 $517  
63 1823 O.107 R.3 PCGS AU 58 Another 1823 with sparkling luster and, yes, a double profile.  The devices are fully struck.  Hints of prooflike surfaces suggest an early die state and augment the eye appeal.  A wonderful coin for the date collector.  

Estimate: $900 to $1,200
6 $1,827 $1,900 $2,010  
64 1825 O.107 R.3 PCGS AU 55 A pastel halo of gold surrounds the brilliant centers.  Luster is A+ for the assigned grade.  The surfaces are essentially free of contact marks.   

Estimate: $450 to $600
13 $775 $1,101 $853  
65 1827 Sq. Base 2 O.115 R.3 PCGS AU 55 CAC Caky luster is little disturbed.  A gossamer blanket of russet toning highlights the obverse.  The reverse displays rich, antique grey toning.  We wish that all our “AU 55s” were as nice as this one!  From an old time collection.  

Estimate: $600 to $800
12 $1,500 $1,600 $1,650  
66 1827 Sq. Base 2 O.120a R.2 PCGS AU 58 Heavy die lines below the bust and crisply struck devices herald an early die state.  A short die break over TA of STATES is a challenge to see.  Full luster twirls across the untoned surfaces.  Just a whisper of friction on the cheek.  From an old time collection.  

Estimate: $850 to $1,200
3 $850 $850 $935  
67 1827 Sq. Base 2 O.124 R.5 PCGS VF 30 The `27-124 is one of those dastardly difficult die marriages.   Attribution is a problem.  Note the drawn stars and absence of dentils.  The worn obverse die was first used on the 1827 O.135.  A short, horizontal curl under the I in LIBERTY is the key for cherry pickers.  Veterans call it the “ED Curl,” honoring Elton Dosier, who was the first to equate Overton’s obverse 17 [O.124] with obverse 22 [O.135].  This unassuming 1827 displays original grey toning, lighter on the devices.  The surfaces are problem-free save for a nick between TA of STATES.  The PCGS holder carries an obsolete attribution, “O.124a.”  The BHNC properly delisted the subvariety in 2020.  The notion of a distinct die state arose in 1990 when Don Parsley was preparing the 3rd revision of Overton’s tome.  I won’t go into the details here.  

Estimate: $1,000 to $1,500
1 $850 $1,200 $935  
68 1827 Sq. Base 2 O.127 R.5 PCGS AU 50 OGH Another killer R.5 from 1827.  This Condition Census piece comes with a distinguished provenance.  It was Ivan Leaman’s set piece until June 1994 when Charlton “Swampy” Meyer extracted it (for $3,625) from the “Pottstown Puller.”  (Leaman practiced dentistry in Pottstown, PA.  He is best known for his work with Donald Gunnet in developing the emission order for Capped Bust halves.  Consult page 9 of your AMBPR for the complete list.)  Swampy died in September 2006.  I purchased the Meyer Collection from Gloria Meyer in 2008 and offered it during the July-August 2008 ANA Convention in Baltimore.  When I priced this coin at $4,250 a collector pounced.  It remained off the market until 2018, when the current consignor acquired it via private treaty for $4,450.  The coin is charming.  It is lightly toned with an alarming dose of luster for the assigned grade.  The surfaces display insignificant signs of handling and are free of circulation ticks.  

Estimate: $3,500 to $4,500
4 $3,500 $4,010 $3,850  
69 1828 Curl 2, No Knob O.104 R.4 PCGS AU 58 The lightly toned centers are surrounded by colorful sprays of turquoise and gold.  Friction on the high points only.  Full luster in the fields.  A very scarce die pair with auction records reflecting the R.4 rarity rating.  

Estimate: $1,200 to $1,500
16 $2,750 $3,850 $3,025  
70 1828 Sq.2, Sm.8s, Lg. Lets O.114 R.3 PCGS AU 55 Charlton Meyer wasn’t sure of the date he acquired this coin.  When I acquired his collection in 2008 I found a note stating, “Early 70s, Ivan Leaman.  $25.”  I chuckled.  The pioneer group of BHNC members did a lot of horse trading, often returning a favor with one of their own.  That may explain the price.  I sent the coin to PCGS.  AU 55 was the expected grade.  The consignor, impressed by the luster, early die state and sharp strike, acquired it during the Baltimore ANA in 2008.  

Estimate: $450 to $600
13 $752 $1,100 $827  
71 1829 O.111 R.2 PCGS AU 53 CAC A captivating crust of primeval toning will draw connoisseurs to this offering.  The stars and portions of the legend are highlighted with iridescent flashes of gemstones.  I can see John Albanese’s eyes widen and brighten when this handsome coin crossed his desk.  Save for roughness at the denomination the surfaces are immaculate.  From the Kings Park Collection.  

Estimate: $450 to $650
12 $600 $700 $660  
72 1829 O.115 R.1 PCGS AU 58 CAC Another 1829 flaunting original toning and surfaces.  Luster glows under the antique grey patina.  Pastel tints of a rainbow circle the stars and legend.  The strike is first rate.  Only the lowest drapery lines exhibit a hint of weakness.  From the Kings Park Collection.  

Estimate: $1,000 to $1,300
10 $1,827 $1,968 $2,010  
73 1829 O.118 R.5 PCGS XF 45 CAC A sleeper for most of its career, the `29-118 has awakened.  Another PCGS XF 45 with CAC sticker appeared in MB 47, August 2018.  The following is a portion of the description I offered for lot 95, consigned by Dr. Tom Sears and formerly owned by John Tidwell and Dr. Glenn Peterson:  

The PCGS label notes the Peterson-Tidwell provenance.  Therein lies a story.  In their day John and Sophia Tidwell had the No.1 die variety set of Capped Bust Half-Dollars.  It included the Elton Dosier 1817/4 and all three crushed lettered edge proofs.  At John’s retirement and with his eyesight failing the Tidwells allowed me to sell their set during the 2004 ANA Convention in Pittsburgh.  This coin, then encapsulated by ANACS and graded AU 50, was in my bourse case, priced generically.  Dr. Peterson snapped it up.  It was sometime later that I learned how difficult it was to find this die pair in high grade.  An XF is certainly R.5; in AU and UNC, try R.7!  Proof of the pudding came at the 2016 Anaheim ANA.  Chuck Link consigned a PCGS MS 62, the 2nd finest known.  When the smoke cleared Dr. Peterson prevailed at $7,385 (MB 43, lot 66).  As I said, the O.118 is tough to find in high grade!

The Tidwell-Peterson-Sears coin brought $1,650 five years ago.  The current offering is an altogether wholesome XF with natural grey toning, some luster and pleasing surfaces.  From the Kings Park Collection.  

Estimate: $1,450 to $1,900
9 $2,200 $2,400 $2,420  
74 1830 Small 0 O.105 R.4 PCGS AU 55 Next to the 1830 Large Letters O.114, the O.105 is probably the scarcest die pair of the year.  An argument may be made for the 1830 O.109, but my vote lies with the O.105.  Check your AMBPR to compare auction appearances.  Congratulations to the PCGS graders for recognizing that worn dies, not wear, account for the soft impression on this high grade piece.  The coin sports original surfaces, with abundant luster buried under layers of antique toning.  From the Kings Park Collection.  

Estimate: $800 to $1,100
0 $0 $0 Not Sold  
75 1832 Large Letters O.101a R.1 PCGS MS 62 A humdinger of this popular Red Book variety.  Bold luster, attractive toning and remarkably smooth surfaces put this coin in the upper echelon of mint state survivors.  The magnificent die break, joining the eagle’s claws and left wing, is in full flower.  From an old time collection.  

Estimate: $1,800 to $2,200
10 $1,857 $2,102 $2,043  
76 1832 Sm. Lets O.102a R.3 PCGS AU 58 CAC Ex Jules Reiver.  Frosty luster, interrupted only by friction on the cheek.  The surfaces are immaculate.  The coin last appeared in the January 2006 Heritage sale of Jules Reiver’s collection, lot 23216, as NGC AU 58, bringing $632.50.  NGC missed the attribution, calling it O.102.  The Reiver provenance and corrected attribution appear on the PCGS label.  

Estimate: $900 to $1,100
11 $1,200 $1,250 $1,320  
77 1832 Small Letters O.110 R.1 PCGS AU 58 Blinding luster showcases pristine surfaces and dazzles the eye on this untoned 1832.  Weakness at the tip of the bust and motto (opposite) are hallmarks of this die pair.  The central devices are sharp.  From an old time collection.  The PCGS label incorrectly states “Large Letters.”  

Estimate: $800 to $1,000
1 $700 $700 $770  
78 1832 Small Letters O.113 R.2 PCGS AU 58 Lightly toned obverse, the reverse with colorful iridescence.  Lovely surfaces, though the luster is less vibrant than on the preceding 1832 O.102a and O.110.  From an old time collection.  

Estimate: $700 to $900
1 $650 $1,200 $715  
79 1833 O.111 R.4+ AU 55 CAC The bust half guru will tell you to pay attention.  The O.111 die pair is very, very scarce, 2nd to the R.5 O.115 for this year.  Equally important, the crust of antique grey toning proclaims the coin to be original.  Weak rims and softly struck devices are products of two worn dies – afflictions that attend many rare die marriages.  Don Frederick’s PCGS AU 55 (without a CAC sticker) brought $2,300 thirteen years ago.  I have not seen a nicer example at auction since then.  From the Kings Park Collection.  

Estimate: $1,500 and up
6 $2,650 $2,750 $2,915  
80 1834 Sm. Date & Lets O.115 R.2 PCGS AU 58 CAC Caky luster glows under a handsome patina that took decades to mature.  The few signs of contact are buried under the toning and will require a loupe to see.  A top-flight 1834!  From an old time collection.  

Estimate: $800 to $1,000
1 $750 $750 $825  
81 1835 O.102 R.3 PCGS AU 55 CAC Original, medium grey toning with occasional flashes of iridescent colors.  A decent strike and superior eye appeal earned CAC’s seal of approval.  Among the late dates, 1830-1836, the 1835 is more difficult to find in high grade.  From the Kings Park Collection.

Estimate: $600 to $800
15 $825 $1,051 $908  
82 1836/1336 O.108 R.1 PCGS AU 58 A lustrous coin, enhanced by silver-grey toning, tinged with golden highlights.  Reasonably early die state, displaying a spiderweb-thin break under the date; no die break through stars 8-13.  The overstruck, upside down 3 is seen in the lower loop of the 8.  From an old time collection.  

Estimate: $900 to $1,200
7 $1,378 $1,600 $1,516  
83 1794 O.106, T-4 R.5 PCGS VF 30 Ex Don Frederick, Jim McGuigan and Steven Nomura.  An unusually wholesome example of this frequently abused first year of issue.  The obverse features a mix of light and darker grey toning.  The reverse is evenly toned, light grey with hints of luster.  A smattering of unobtrusive, uninteresting circulation ticks lie beneath the toning and befit the grade.  You will need a loupe to find faint adjustment marks at 6 o’clock on the reverse.   

This was Don Frederick’s set piece for many years.  It brought $37,375 when Heritage offered it at the 2008 July/August Baltimore ANA Sale.  Lot 1658 appeared in an NGC VF 35 capsule and was assigned an R.6 rarity rating.  Jim McGuigan either purchased the coin at the Frederick auction or acquired it later.  He crossed the coin to PCGS and submitted it to CAC, with happy results.  Only two 1794s graded VF 30 carry a CAC sticker.  I suspect the other is a common O.101.  In August 2015 McGuigan sold the coin to Steve Nomura for $35,000.  The market for 1794 half-dollars had begun to slip with news that Terry Brand had died in 2010.  His estate held a hoard of around 200 1794 half-dollars, assembled over a period of approximately 25 years.  In 2017 Heritage began selling the Brand hoard.  Most graded good to fine, many with problem.  About 90% were attributed to the 1794 O.101 die pair.  The market for 1794s sagged further as sales continued over the next 2 to 3 years.  Good news for collectors seeking examples of this charismatic date.  Not so good for collectors who already owned a 1794.  Higher grade and Condition Census pieces were less affected by dispersal of the Brand hoard.  The Nomura 1794 O.106 is plated in Tompkins, p.30.  It lies at the tail-end of or just outside the Condition Census for this die pair.  It depends on how one views a couple of XF coins with problems.  The Tompkins plates are useful in making that determination.  In all events, this is an important coin.  

Estimate: $20,000 to $25,000
3 $18,005 $22,000 $19,806  
84 1807 O.111a R.4+ PCGS OGH AU 53 CAC Ex James Pryor, George Hamilton, Dr. Charles Link and Alan Sontag.   An old friend.  I sold the coin to Jim Pryor April 16, 1989, ending his search for an AU or better example of the Bearded Goddess.  Some collectors reserve that moniker for the later die state, O.111b.  Pryor pointed to the full “beard,” chest to chin, and worried not that the die break ended before entering Liberty’s cap.  Brain cancer took Jim from us in 1991.  He was only 55.  The family kept his unrivaled collection of half-dollars until Bowers & Merena offered it at the January 1996 FUN Show.  Mark Borckardt had the pleasure of cataloging the bust halves.  He echoed my belief of the time that the Pryor “Bearded Goddess” was 4th finest known.  (A couple of higher grade examples have since appeared.)  He continued, “[The strike] is bold, with very slight weakness on the drapery, ribbon and clasp….  Very choice surfaces, with deep blue-gray peripheral toning.  The central portion of obverse and reverse are pale gray.”  I would add that the luster is exactly what one expects from the assigned grade.

When the Pryor sale was announced I was assaulted by collectors seeking comment and representation at the auction.  My notes in the catalog are reminders that Geoge Hamilton and Gehring Prouty retained me to enter bids on the “Bearded Goddess.”  It turned out they were the top two bidders, with Hamilton bludgeoning Prouty, $9,000 to $5,500.  The hammer price became $5,750 -- $6,325 with the buyer’s fee.  Hamilton kept the coin until he passed away.  Heritage offered his collection at its August 2016 ANA Sale in Anaheim, CA.  Once again Mark Borckardt, who had switched horses from B&M to Heritage, enjoyed cataloging this coin.  He repeated his views from 1996 and concluded his remarks this way, “The Bearded Goddess is an ultimate goal of all Bust half variety collectors, and this well-pedigreed example is a true feather in the cap for some fortunate bidder who recognizes its memorable quality and importance.”  Dr. Charles Link agreed.  He was the winning bidder at $14,688. 

In 2017 Dr. Link sold the coin to the present consignor, Alan Sontag.   Alan is a patient and knowledgeable collector of early United States coins, with a superb eye for quality.  His date and Red Book set of bust halves, assembled over many years, is among the finest extant.  Few of us in the numismatic community know that Alan holds multiple national and world championships in his chosen field, contract bridge.  Bridge is one of the most intellectually demanding and rewarding sports on earth.  “Sonty,” as his bridge colleagues know him, was admitted to the American Contract Bridge League Hall of Fame in 2007.  You will find details here:   

Estimate: $20,000 and up
0 $0 $0 Not Sold  
85 1811/10 O.101 R.1 PCGS MS 64+ CAC A bust half as colorful as this is subject to sanctions.  It puts others to shame.  The blend of iridescent blue, turquoise, rose -- and who knows what else -- is awe-inspiring.  The strike and luster leave nothing to be desired.  The surfaces are immaculate.  Pryor, Pogue and Friend each had lovely MS 64 examples.  But this one rates the best.  At least in my opinion.  Can’t figure why it is not in a 65 holder.  The dramatic toning and double profile facilitate identification, past and future.  It was a highlight of Jim O’Neal’s collection of rarities, offered by Heritage in April 2019, where it brought $30,000.  Be sure to preview the coin, even if your budget will not permit ownership.  

Estimate: $30,000 and up
4 $31,000 $42,000 $34,100  
86 1812/1 Large 8 O.101 R.5 PCGS AU 53 CAC Ex Donald Parsley.  Twenty-six years ago this coin walked into a coin shop in Fort Meyers, FL.  The owner, Michael Herbert, graciously consigned the coin to my January 29, 1997 Mail Bid Sale No. 19.  Don Parsley won the coin in a furious bidding war with other notable collectors.  It has been off the market since then.  

The coin is untoned with extravagant luster for the assigned grade.  There is light friction on the high points but virtually none in the fields, just minor signs of handling.  The strike is excellent for the die pair.  The die break through stars on the left is spider-web thin, attesting to an early die state.  As the warped obverse die began to fail, most 1812/1 Large 8s will “rock” if placed face down,.  Before it was slabbed I placed the raw coin face down.  It lay flat.  

Newcomers to the bust half series must understand the history and importance of the `12 over 11 Large 8.  In October 1941 Stack’s catalogued and sold the collection of A.C Geis.  Geis, according to Stack’s, was then the oldest living collector in the United States, having started his collection in 1864!  He attributed his bust halves according to Haseltine’s 1881 Type Table, ignoring the “newer” guide published by M.L. Beistle in 1929.  When Geis located a variety not in Haseltine, he assigned it a “G” number.  His collection included an 1812/1 Large 8.  Stacks, knowing not what it had, catalogued the piece (in full) as follows: 1812 G.3 over 11, but large 8 in date.  Very fine.  The “G.3,” of course, was Geis’ personal attribution, distinguishing it from anything described by Haseltine.  Skip forward to December 1969.  New Netherlands Coin Co., headed by John Ford and Charles Wormser, conducted a Mail Bid Sale catalogued by Walter Breen.  Lot 817, according to Breen, was a new variety of 1812/1, one with a Large 8.  Breen ballyhooed his find and today receives credit for discovering this charismatic variety.  Al Overton listed it in his 2nd (1970) edition, rating it R.7.  The Red Book picked up the variety in 1972.

Though the rarity rating has dropped to R.5, the number of high grade examples is extremely limited.  No UNCs are known.  NGC has graded 2 pieces AU 55.  Neither holds a candle to the coin offered here.  The Charles Ruby-Donald Frederick coin is the only true contender for finest known.  In November 1996 Frederick graciously brought his coin to the Baltimore show so it could be compared to this one.  Collectors and dealers gathered to ooh and ahh.  I joined the majority in slightly preferring the Ruby-Frederick coin.  It appeared original, with somewhat mottled antique gold toning.  The die states and luster were identical.  The Ruby coin, perhaps, had less friction on the interior wing feathers.  Those who preferred the present coin pointed to its “flash” and honesty (no hidden defects).  Dr. Charles Link acquired the Ruby coin at the April 2010 Heritage sale of the Frederick Collection, where lot 2933, graded PCGS AU 53, brought $43,125.  Dr. Link has upgraded the coin to PCGS AU 55.  It does not carry a CAC sticker.  The Parsley coin, in fact, is the only 1812/1 Large 8 graded above VF to enjoy CAC approval.

Legions of collectors seek to complete an AU or UNC Red Book set of bust halves.  Captain Haseltine, M.L. Beistle, Al Overton, R.E. Cox, R.L. Miles, James Pryor, Louis Eliasberg and the Pogue family fell short, lacking a suitable 1812/1 Large 8.  One of you will succeed.  Good luck!  

Estimate: $50,000 and up
4 $51,500 $58,100 $56,650  
87 1817/3 O.101 R.2 NGC MS 62 Ex Charles De Olden and Donald Parsley.   Your first impressions will focus on the strike and luster.  The central devices are as sharp as any I’ve seen on an 1817/3.  High rims, complete dentils and 10 of 13 stars with center points confirm the early die state.  Full luster rolls across the remarkably smooth surfaces.  The coin is untoned, allowing a rare view of several “dots” in the obverse fields, a product of imperfections in the die.  A couple of insignificant drift marks appear over the eagle’s head.  Charles De Olden acquired the coin in its current holder from Dave Olmstead (Alpine Numismatics) in December 2002.  In August 2006 I offered it in a sealed bid sale of De Olden’s more important coins.  This was lot 14 in that sale, labeled “The Fabulous 44.”  Don Parsley prevailed against stern competition, with a winning bid of $8,250.  A darkly toned 1817/3, PCGS MS 62, appeared in Legend’s July 2018 sale, bringing $9,988.  Most will prefer the De Olden/Parsley coin.

Estimate: $8,000 to $11,000
1 $6,500 $6,500 $7,150  
88 181.7 Punc. Date O.103 R.2 PCGS MS 64 Ex James Pryor, George “Buddy” Byers and Steven Nomura.   An absolute monster.  Jim Pryor found it in Stack’s September 1983 sale, lot 766.  The January 25, 1996 B&M catalog of the Pryor Collection has my notes on the coin (lot 35), a simple “Super Look!”  I entered a bid on behalf of Tom Palmer but Pryor’s collecting friend, Buddy Byers, outlasted the competition.  Byers’ collection came to auction in October 2006.  I scribbled, “Nice antique toning – frosty luster.  MS 64,” next to lot 1032.  This time I carried a bid from Steve Nomura.  We prevailed at $6,325, including the 15% buyer’s fee.  When Steve consigned his Capped Bust half-dollar collection to me in 2013 he kept one coin back.  His favorite coin in the set was this 1817 Punctuated Date.  Complications from prostate cancer took Steve from us in March this year.  His estate asked me to include this coin in the sale.  It approaches gem status, with gorgeous gold over silver toning, ringed with iridescent hues of russet and blue.  Luster runs deep and undisturbed.  Dale Friend’s PCGS MS 65, a thoroughly original specimen, holds the #1 spot in the Condition Census for this popular Red Book variety.  It brought $36,000 in August 2018.  An NGC MS 64+, ex Dr. Charles Link, vies with the Nomura coin for no.2 in the Condition Census.  It brought $35,250 at Legend’s September 2021 sale of The Virginia Collection (lot 56).

Estimate: $30,000 to $35,000
3 $34,751 $35,501 $38,226  
89 1823 O.113 R.6+ PCGS VF 25 Ex Don Parsley.   It has been 15 years since I handled an example of this noted rarity.  In July 2008 Charlton Meyer’s PCGS XF 40 appeared in my sale of 44 Selected Rarities from his (complete) collection of Capped Bust half-dollars.  It brought $31,655.  Olin “Ole” Carter discovered the variety in February 1978.  Steve Herrman has since traced only 14 examples of the O.113 die pair.  My best recollection is that this coin popped up at a Long Beach show circa 2004.  A large cent collector happened upon it and consigned it to a specialist in that arena.  When it was offered to me I spoke with Don Parsley.  He was interested at the mid-4 figure asking price and the sale was consummated.  PCGS graded, attributed and encapsulated the coin this past February.  The light grey centers are flanked by darker toning through the stars and legend.  Stray hairlines in the fields suggest the coin was lightly wiped.  The blunt obverse strike is typical of the variety.  The obverse die was pulled from the shelf in early 1824 and paired with a reverse die that first appeared on the 1824/1 O.102.  Yes, the 1823 O.113 was struck in 1824.  There were, in fact, four die pairs dated 1824 that were struck before the laggard 1823-113.

Not since 2014 has a straight-graded 1823 O.113 come to auction.  Heritage sold a PCGS Gd. 6 that year in its January FUN Show auction.  It brought $19,975.  Herrman lists a November 2020 private treaty sale of a PCGS XF 40 at $37,500.  The Parsley coin makes its auction debut here.  Don your bidding boots!

Estimate: $20,000 to $30,000
15 $41,200 $51,000 $45,320  
90 1827 Sq. Base 2 O.137 R.6- PCGS F.12 Ex Tom Bay, Sr., Robinson S. Brown, Jr. and Donald Parsley.   An evenly worn, naturally toned example of this rarity.  Smooth surfaces aside from a nick between 5 and 0 of the denomination.  The soft strike is unavoidable.  Both dies were well worn from prior use.  With but 20 to 25 pieces known most die variety collectors await an opportunity to acquire a “137.”  The O.137 is the 3rd rarest 1827, after the 1827 O.148 and O.149.  BHNC pioneer Tom Bay Sr. found this coin when less than a half dozen were known.  His collection was rife with rarities at the time I purchased it in 1991.  Robbie Brown was at the ready, gobbling up most of Tom’s R.5 and R.6 die pairs.  We concluded the transaction in his Beverly Hills hotel room, where Robbie and his son were visiting from Kentucky during one of Superior’s major bust half auctions.  The coin next appeared in MB 15, lot 53, the third of my auctions to feature Robbie’s coins.  Don Parsley prevailed at $5,390.  Infrequent auction appearances of this variety are replete with problem coins.  I count 8 such outcasts in Herrman’s most recent AMBPR.  A darkly toned PCGS F.15 sold for $8,525 in August 2022 [Great Collect (D.S. Registry) lot 1149969].  

Estimate: $3,500 and up
3 $4,007 $4,007 $4,408  
91 1831 O.120 R.6- PCGS AU 55 Ex Elton Dosier and Donald Parsley   Elton Dosier found this coin at Norm and Bill Pullen’s table during the June 1976 Long Beach Show.  Few dealers of the day attributed their bust halves.  Elton spotted a telltale bulge in the left obverse field and plunked down the asking price of $150.  Six years had passed since Don Gunnet discovered the variety, a bit too late to be included in the 1970 revised 2nd Edition of Al Overton’s standard reference.  Fewer than a half dozen pieces were known.  (Gunnet’s discovery coin, a scudzy VG-F, was lot 2 in my June 2003 sale, MB 28, then part of Floyd Farley’s unrivaled die variety collection.)  Elton kept his coin until he passed away in March 1997.  Dorothy Dosier asked me to handle the sale of Elton’s collection.  Don and Bonnie Parsley parted with the Overton Collection in 1993.  Don, however, could not resist the urge to continue collecting.  Neither he nor Al Overton had owned an 1831 O.120.  Would I make the coin available to him?  Despite protests from other aspirants, including Charlton Meyer and Gehring Prouty, I offered the Dosier coin to Don.   

After resting in but two collections over the past 47 years the coin makes its first appearance at auction.  It was recently graded by PCGS, landing at no.2 in the Condition Census.  Only 20 or so examples are known in all grades.  The finest is a prooflike coin graded MS 62 by PCGS.  It is currently owned by Dr. Charles Link, after passing through the collections of Bernard Edison (known as “R. Tettenhorst” to the numismatic community) and George “Buddy” Byers.  The Dosier-Parsley coin is a brilliant, lustrous masterpiece with scant signs of actual circulation.  Elton stored the coin in a brown kraft envelope; it includes his notes regarding the date, price and place of purchase.  The envelope accompanies the lot.

Estimate: $25,000 and up
2 $26,500 $42,100 $29,150  

Sheridan Downey, Numismatist
4400 Keller Ave., Suite 140, PMB 398
Oakland, California 94605
(510) 479-1585

©2024 Sheridan Downey