1913 Liberty Nickel, One of Five Known, Leads Heritage Central States Event Walton Specimen, lost for 40 years, offered at auction for first time alongside rare pattern and early American coinage, April 25
of the Selections From The Eric P. Newman Collection are pattern or experimental coins. Top highlights include an 1877 quarter dollar with William Barber’s “Sailor Head” portrait of Liberty struck in copper, Judd-1500 variety, graded PR65 Red NGC and easily the finest known example out of just eight confirmed; and an 1879 metric twenty dollar or “Quintuple Stella” struck in copper, Judd-1644 variety, graded PR64+ Red and Brown NGC.
“The U.S. Mint’s coinage experiments shed light on the coins they produced for commerce,” said Halperin. “It is only natural that Eric P. Newman has taken great interest in them.”
A single Territorial gold coin from The Eric P. Newman Collection caused a stir as soon as it was certified. An 1852 Humbert ten dollar coin, Kagin-10 variety, was graded MS68 NGC, CAC, the first California private or Territorial gold coin to be certified as MS68 by a major service. The coin was retained by Augustus Humbert, United States Assayer of Gold for California in the early 1850s, and passed into his estate. In a relatively short pedigree punctuated by long stretches of ownership are several famous collecting names, including Waldo Newcomer, “Colonel” E.H.R. Green, and of course, Eric P. Newman. Its offering at auction is an unprecedented opportunity for serious collectors.
Early American coinage is well-represented in the event. The unique 1783 Nova Constellatio Type Two “Quint” in Silver, AU53 PCGS. The 13 former colonies each used a different monetary system at the time, and the Nova Constellatio patterns were based on a complicated system of 1,440 units to a Spanish dollar that would accommodate 12 of them. This 500-unit pattern, or “quint,” is unique and has been owned by several famous collectors including John Work Garrett, who donated his collection to Johns Hopkins University. The University’s sale of this coin in November 1979 was its most recent auction appearance.
The Bushnell-Parmelee-Green-Norweb specimen of the 1792 Judd-1 silver center cent, MS61+ Brown NGC, is one of the first experimental coins made under the authority of the Mint Act of 1792. Its unusual appearance, with a small silver “plug” in the middle of a wider copper body, was an attempt to reduce the weight of the cent by adding a small amount of precious metal. Graded MS61+ Brown, this coin once owned by Ambassador and Mrs. R. Henry Norweb is slightly finer than the Morris specimen, sold by Heritage for $1.15 million in April 2012.
Noteworthy among official early U.S. issues is a 1796 dollar with Small Date obverse and Small Letters reverse, B-2, BB-63 variety, graded MS65 NGC. The sole finest 1796 Small Date, Small Letters dollar known, it is a highlight of The William Jacob Collection, Part II.
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