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All Posts Tagged With: "Bowers and Merena"

Bowers and Merena to Offer 1879-O Class I Branch Mint Proof Morgan Dollar In Baltimore

The Second Finest of Only Four Specimens Known to Exist

Easily the rarest and also among the most popular Morgan Dollars with advanced collectors are the branch mint proofs–coins that are so rare, in fact, that many numismatists have never even seen one of these specimens, let alone been confronted with the opportunity to add one to their holdings.

Writing in the 1982 book The Morgan and Peace Dollar Textbook, Wayne Miller enumerates five classes of branch Mint proof Morgan Dollars. The claim that an individual issue has to branch mint status decreases as the class # increases; the Class V pieces, in fact, being described by Miller as, “coins rumored to be branch mint proofs which the author has seen and which are definitely not proofs.”

On the other end of the scale are the Class I branch mint proofs, which Wayne Miller describes as, “authorized, definite branch mint proofs. These are the…dates for which proofs were authorized and subsequently issued [emphasis author’s].” Only four branch mint proof Morgan Dollars qualify as Class I: 1879-O; 1883-O; 1893-CC; and 1921-S.

The 1879-O is perhaps the best known Class I branch mint proof Morgan Dollar, and it is also among the most instantly recognizable of all branch mint proof coins regardless of type or issue. Considerable documentation exists for the creation of these coins, according to which a mere 12 specimens were struck on February 20, 1879 to commemorate the reopening of the New Orleans Mint (the facility had ceased production in 1861 at the onset of the Civil War). Of the original 12 coins struck, only four specimens are known to exist. (more…)

Finest-Known 1901-S Barber Quarter to be sold by Bowers and Merena in Baltimore

This is the undisputed “King of Barber Coinage,” the rare and eagerly sought 1901-S Quarter. The San Francisco Mint struck a mere 72,664 Quarters in 1901, which snatched the record low mintage for the Barber series from the hands of the 1896-S (188,039 pieces produced).

This record would remain intact until 1913, when the San Francisco Mint delivered a mere 40,000 Quarters. The 1901-S is much rarer than the 1913-S in all grades, however, for the issue was saved in far fewer numbers by the contemporary public.

Indeed, little interest seems to have been taken in the 1901-S Quarter at the time of its production, especially numismatic interest. What interest there was in the 1901-S seems to have been focused entirely on the issue’s usefulness as a circulating medium of exchange. And circulate these coins did, many of the 72,664 pieces being lost in the process and most survivors displaying heavy wear. As with most issues in the various Barber coin series, in fact, the only 1901-S Quarters that are seen on a fairly regular basis in numismatic circles are low-grade pieces in AG, Good and VG.

Even at the lower reaches of the numismatic grading scale, however, the limited mintage guaranteed that the 1901-S would be a scarce coin in an absolute sense. Rarity increases exponentially through the Fine, VF, EF and AU grade levels, at which point we find ourselves at the Mint State portion of the grading scale. Here the 1901-S is very rare, the small number of such pieces known to exist having survived almost purely as a matter of chance.

The B&M cataloger has never seen a 1901-S Quarter with the technical merits and eye appeal of this awe-inspiring Superb Gem. This is the single highest-graded 1901-S Barber Quarter known to PCGS, and the coin fully deserves every bit of honor that derives from this important standing. (more…)

Bowers and Merena Kicks Off 2010 With Successful Orlando Coin Auction

Bowers and Merena, America’s premier rare coin and currency auction house, kicked off what promises to be an exciting year with its January 2010 Orlando Rarities Sale. The sale, with nearly 1,000 lots of rare and enticing United States, Colonial and Territorial gold coinage, was conducted in a single session on January 5. Total prices realized for the auction is in excess of $2.5 million.

bm_fun_10_stella“We had a strong turnout among bidders in our Orlando Rarities Sale,” stated Bowers and Merena president Steve Deeds, “and prices realized for many lots reflected collectors’ interests in rare, difficult-to-find coins in premium-quality condition. The stand-out highlight of the sale is lot 743, an 1879 Judd-1635 Flowing Hair Stella certified Proof-66 Cameo by NGC. The dazzling rarity traded hands for $182,500.”

“Another gold coin that performed very well is lot 747, an 1802/3 Half Eagle MS-65 * NGC,” continued Deeds. “This sharply struck, Condition Census rarity brought $115,000 at auction.”

Said Deeds: “United States gold coins were not the only strong performers in our Orlando Rarities Sale. Early Copper specialists made their voices heard by driving the realized price for lot 27 to an impressive total of $25,300. The coin in that lot is a fresh, new-to-market example of the rare S-264 Large Date, Small Fraction variety of the 1803 Draped Bust Cent. We sold the coin as a PCGS VG-10.”

“And in the Territorial gold section of our Orlando Rarities Sale we were pleased to present lot 695,” observed Deeds. “A unique variety of the 1851 K-2 Augustus Humbert $50 Gold, this PCGS-certified AU-55 is missing the digits 88 in the inscription 880 THOUS on the obverse scroll. We saw particularly fierce competition between two interested bidders, and when the dust settled the winner earned the right to take this important coin home at $115,000. (more…)

Bowers and Merena 2010 Orlando Rarities Coin Auction Includes Humbert $50 Error

Important U.S. Coins to Cross Auction Block in January

humbert_error_bm_121109Bowers and Merena Auctions, America’s leading rare coin and currency auction house, will commence its 2010 auction schedule with the Orlando Rarities Sale. The auction will be conducted on Tuesday, January 5, 2010, beginning at 6 p.m. ET at the Doubletree Resort-Orlando International Drive. Pre-sale lot viewing will take place in the same location January 3 to 5 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day.

“2010 promises to be another exciting year for Bowers and Merena,” remarked Steve Deeds, president of the firm. “The year will certainly begin on a high note with our eagerly anticipated Orlando Rarities Sale. Many important coins are included among the highlights of this sale, and bidding promises to be spirited for all U.S. coin series and types.”

Continued Deeds: “Among the leading rarities set to cross the auction block in our Orlando Rarities Sale is an 1851 Augustus Humbert Fifty-Dollar gold piece with an extremely important, previously unknown engraving error.

humbert_error_details_121109Nominally an example of the Kagin-2 Lettered Edge variety—itself a scarce variety with a Rarity-5 rating—this particular piece is missing the digits 88 in the inscription 880 THOUS, resulting in a partially blank scroll on the obverse above the eagle.

A discovery piece that has been certified AU-55 by PCGS, this coin is sure to warrant the undivided attention of Territorial gold specialists.”

Deeds also called attention to highlights in the regular issue United States silver- and gold-coin series. “We will also be presenting a low-mintage 1916 Standing Liberty Quarter graded MS-65 Full Head by NGC, an elusive 1796 Draped Bust, Small Eagle Half Dollar of the 16 Stars variety in PCGS/CAC VG-10 and an exquisite 1879 Flowing Hair Stella rarity that NGC has certified as Proof-66 Cameo.” (more…)

Classic Rarities Perform Extremely Well At Bowers and Merena Baltimore Rare Coin Auction

Bowers and Merena Realizes More Than $8 Million in Official November Baltimore Auction

1830_5_bm_112309Bowers and Merena Auctions, America’s premier rare coin and currency auction house, continues to bring success to its consignors as the Official Auctioneer of the Whitman Coin & Collectibles Baltimore Expo. The 6,000+ lot auction conducted November 12-14, 2009 realized more than $8 million, with U.S. coin and currency sales totaling $5.8 million, and Ponterio & Associates netting $2.1 million in world coin and banknote sales.

“We were thoroughly impressed with the bidder participation in our November 2009 Baltimore Auction,” stated Steve Deeds, President of Bowers and Merena. “Bidding was spirited for both classic rarities and exceptionally high-grade coins, particularly fresh and original pieces that had been off the market for a considerable amount of time. The Dr. Alfred R. Globus Collection led the way for many U.S. coin series and types, and it achieved the record price for the auction when the 1830 Capped Head Left Half Eagle in PCGS MS-65 traded hands for $241,500. This important early Half Eagle, offered as lot 3685, realized nearly 40% more than the Coin Dealer Newsletter bid of ‘$173K’ for the 1830 Half Eagle in MS-65 as reported in the September 11, 2009 edition of CDN Quarterly III.”

Continued Deeds: “Another classic rarity from the early U.S. Half Eagle series that performed very well in the November Baltimore Auction is the 1821 Capped Head Left Five that brought $112,125 as lot 3684. That coin is certified AU-53 by PCGS, and it is one of only 15-20 examples known for the issue.”


Bowers and Merena Baltimore Auction to Feature over 6000 Lots of US and World Coins

Bowers and Merena Auctions, America’s leading rare coin and currency auction house, will bring more than 6,000 lots of fine coins and currency to Baltimore, Md., for the Official Auction of the Whitman Coin & Collectibles Baltimore Expo scheduled for November 10-14, 2009.

1830_5_bm_102109There are nearly 2,600 U.S. lots and close to 3,500 World lots. The auction will take place at the Baltimore Convention Center and begins with lot viewing Tuesday, November 10, through Saturday, November 14, coinciding with the seven-session auction on Thursday, November 12, through Saturday, November 14. The complete auction and lot viewing schedule is available at

“Bowers and Merena has presented many successful auctions in 2009, including two earlier Official Baltimore auctions and two Official ANA auctions, and I am very pleased to finish 2009 with our largest auction of the year by number of lots crossing the block,” said Steve Deeds, president of Bowers and Merena auctions. “With more than 6,000 lots in the auction, including the incredible Globus Collection and many highlights, this is an auction that will offer something for everyone, be it U.S. or World, coins or currency.”

The spotlight lot of the auction is lot 3685, a High Condition Census 1830 BD-1 Half Eagle, a Gem example of a rare and seldom-offered issue. Cataloged as 1830 BD-1, HBCC-3156, Miller-158. Rarity-6. Large 5D. MS-65 (PCGS), this fine specimen is part of The Dr. Alfred R. Globus Collection of U.S. and World Coins. The extant population for the 1830 Five is a mere 55-75 coins (per John W. Dannreuther, 2006), the vast majority of examples having been wiped out through the widespread melting that claimed most pre-1834 U.S. gold coins. The two die marriages are fairly similar in rarity, although a slight edge goes to BD-1 with only 25-35 coins known to exist. As a fully lustrous and minimally abraded Gem, this gorgeous BD-1 example is high in the Condition Census for both the issue and the die pair, with a PCGS Populations of just one and a mere two finer, both of which grade MS-66.

Dr. Alfred R. Globus was one of America’s most renowned numismatic collectors. In addition to the 1830 Capped Bust Half Eagle, Bowers and Merena will present several hundred U.S. and World lots from his collection, including these impressive highlights: (more…)

Ponterio & Associates Offers Extensive Selection of World Banknotes Auction This November in Baltimore

Ponterio & Associates, a division of Bowers and Merena Auctions, will bring 1,250 lots of world paper money to Baltimore, Md., as part Bowers and Merena’s Official Auction of the Whitman Coin and Collectibles Baltimore Expo scheduled for November 10-14, 2009. The auction will take place at the Baltimore Convention Center and includes an impressive world catalog presented in four sessions.

bm_bank_persiaCurrency highlights include more notes from the popular “East Bay Collection” set to cross the auction block. One of the notable countries with an impressive variety is Iran, which will be illustrated by many Imperial Bank of Persia issues, always sure to garner considerable attention. One of the highlights of the Iranian notes is a 20 Tomans 1925 Pick-15 in a strikingly original Very Fine grade.

More impressive notes will be displayed from countries of the British Commonwealth with a lovely selection of Straits Settlements highlighted by a Pick 12a Fifty Dollar note in an attractive Fine grade. Other countries of interest offering a pleasing assortment of scarce to rare notes includes Brazil, Canada, China, Columbia, Costa Rica, Danzig, Great Britain, Ireland, Italy, Russia, and Scotland. In addition, several other scarce to rare notes will be offered which include many stunning issued and specimen pieces from tough locations and issuing authorities.

Bowers and Merena Realizes Over $2.5 Million in Philadelphia Expo Pre-show Coin Auction

Bowers and Merena Auctions, America’s leading rare coin and currency auction house, presented the Official Pre-show Auction of the Whitman Coin & Collectibles Philadelphia Expo on September 22, 2009. The two-session auction realized $2,520,460.

bm_lord_balt_092109“Philadelphia was a wonderful choice for this Whitman show and Bowers and Merena’s pre-show auction,” said Steve Deeds, president of Bowers and Merena. “The city is so rich in American history which lends itself to the real nature of what we do in numismatics, and we were very fortunate to be able to present an extensive selection of rare Colonial and Early Federal Era coinage that was very much in keeping with this historic theme. The turnout was great and we are very pleased with our results.”

A highpoint of the day came early with lot 15, an undated (circa 1659) Lord Baltimore Shilling graded MS-61 by PCGS, the Eliasberg Specimen, which realized an impressive $57,500. A definite highlight of the extensive Colonial-era coinage that Bowers and Merena offered in the sale, this Lord Baltimore Shilling is the highest graded by PCGS and may very well be the finest-known example of the type.

Additional highlights include:

Lot 12 1652 Massachusetts Bay Colony Pine Tree Shilling. Large Planchet. W-740, Noe-8, Crosby 1b-D. $43,700

URS-9.Monogrammed NE in Legend. MS-64 (PCGS).

Bowers and Merena’s Upcoming Philadelphia Coin Auction Highlights 1652 Willow Tree Shilling

Auction Spotlights Remarkable 1652 Massachusetts Bay Colony Willow Tree Shilling

bm_willow_tree_090209Bowers and Merena Auctions will bring nearly 1,500 lots of fine coins to Philadelphia, Pa.., for the Official Pre-show Auction of the Whitman Coin & Collectibles Philadelphia Expo set for September 21-22, 2009. The auction will take place at the Pennsylvania Convention Center and begins with lot viewing Monday, September 21, and Tuesday, September 22, followed by the two-session auction on Tuesday at 2 p.m. and 6 p.m. EDT.

“Bowers and Merena has had the privilege for many years to present the Official Baltimore Auction with Whitman, so we are very pleased for this opportunity to work with them in Philadelphia as the Official Pre-show Auctioneer,” said Steve Deeds, president of Bowers and Merena. “Whitman produces excellent coin shows. And Philadelphia is rich in history and tradition, really two of the cornerstones of numismatics.”

The auction will present an important selection of rare Colonial and Early Federal Era coinage. Of special note is lot 10, a remarkable 1652 Massachusetts Bay Colony Willow Tree Shilling, the Clark-Wurtzbach-Wiseman Specimen of this extremely rare type and the finest certified by PCGS at AU-58. Limited press runs combined with a high rate of attrition explain the extreme rarity of Willow Tree Shillings in numismatic circles. “This particular example is superior to most and represents an important find for the specialist,” said Deeds. “For the type, it is hard to imagine a more visually appealing, technically sound, and desirable representative of this rare and historic issue from the earliest era of coinage operations in Colonial America, and Philadelphia is a very fitting venue to present it at auction.”

Another Colonial Era highlight is lot 44, a historic 1776 Continental Dollar, a beautiful, high-grade pewter striking of the EG FECIT variety in PCGS MS-64 with the CAC designation. PCGS Population is 10 and only four are finer in
MS-65.The Continental Currency pieces (or Dollars) are among the most historically significant and important coins ever struck within the borders of what is now the United States of America. W-8460 as represented in this lot is easily attributable by the addition of the inscription EG FECIT on the band below the central-obverse device.