GreatCollections – Record Prices for PCGS Certified Coins at GreatCollections Coin Auctions

Item photo 1032590 1893-S Morgan Silver Dollar PCGS MS-67 CAC (Toned) (Ex. Jack Lee, Coronet)
The Ultimate Morgan Silver Dollar.

The 1893-S silver dollar has the lowest mintage of all Morgan Dollars issued between 1878 and 1921, and it is universally considered the key to the series in all grades.

This particular example is the finest known by two full grade points (and we consider the coin is still conservatively graded). When you first see the coin in-hand, you don’t even consider it could be an 1893-S, due to the superior quality and eye appeal, not to mention the pristine fields and strong strike. It never touched the inside of Morgan dollar bag, nor was it housed in a paper bank roll back in the day. We picture the coin being struck by a careful Mint employee in San Francisco and handled with cotton gloves from that point forward.

This 1893-S has a long history in the world of coins, mostly with the numismatic family of Cornelius Vermeule, who himself, acquired it at the time of mintage, before passing through generations of the same family until it was finally sold by a New York firm for a record-breaking $414,000 in 2001. The coin was auctioned uncertified/raw, which is hard to believe in today’s market for such a high value and important piece and was acquired by Morgan dollar expert Jack Lee. Counting the Vermeule family as one, there has only been four owners of this coin since it was minted almost 130 years ago.

GreatCollections is privileged to auction this historic coin, which we repeat is the ultimate Morgan dollar. It is certain to set a new record when the bidding ends on Sunday, August 29, 2021. Sold $2,086,875.00
($1,855,000.00 hammer)
August 29, 2021 Item photo 1053185 2011 25 BTC Casascius Bitcoin Gold-Plated Coin PCGS MS-67
This is an active (unredeemed) Casascius 25 BTC physical coin/token, the first of this denomination that we have had the pleasure to handle.  It is also the first and only example currently graded by PCGS.

Approximately 800 of the 25 BTC denomination were produced between 2011 and 2013, and more than half have already been redeemed.  It is the second highest denomination coin produced by Casascius, the only larger being the 1000 BTC Gold Cas.

This auction will be shipped via Brink’s or similar armored car service to the winning bidder. Sold $1,698,750.00
($1,510,000.00 hammer)
November 14, 2021 Item photo 1135643 2011 25 BTC Casascius Bitcoin Gold-Plated Coin PCGS MS-66
This is an active (unredeemed) Casascius 25 BTC physical coin/token.

As it was created in 2013, this has a number of Bitcoin forks, including 25 Bitcoin Cash (BCH) and 25 Bitcoin Gold (BTG).

Approximately 800 of the 25 BTC denomination were produced between 2011 and 2013, and more than half have already been redeemed. It is the second highest denomination coin produced by Casascius, the only larger being the 1000 BTC Gold Cas.

This auction will be shipped via Brink’s or similar armored car service to the winning bidder. Sold $1,102,500.00
($980,000.00 hammer)
April 10, 2022 Item photo 1023567 Unique 1855 Wass, Molitor & Co. Large Head Gold Twenty Dollar PCGS AU-50 CAC (Ex. Carter Collection)
Excessively rare 1855 $20 Wass, Molitor & Co. Large Head Twenty Dollar, (K-8a). PCGS AU-50 CAC. Unique. One of only four known Large Head Wass Molitor Twenty Dollar coins, and unique by variety. It is the only example approved by CAC. Listed in A Guide Book of U.S. Coins, commonly referred to as the Red Book, as a unique variety. When this coin last sold in 2014 it was discovered that unlike the other three examples known, it used the reverse die of the Small Head Wass Molitor Twenty. The other three used a slightly different reverse die.

This specimen is essentially the only collectable Large Head Wass Molitor double eagle available to collectors. Of the other three known specimens, one is in the Smithsonian Institution, one was stolen in the Willis H. DuPont robbery of 1967 and its location is unknown at this time, and the third was also stolen in 1967 from the Yale University collection but is believed to have been recovered.

An 1855 $20 Large Head Twenty Dollar has appeared at public auction only seven times since 1896, including this appearance. Of those seven appearances, six are of this coin. The lone auction appearance of a different Wass Molitor Large Head Twenty occurred in 1929 in the Thomas Elder sale of the Lawrence collection, lot 1406, where it realized the sum of $7,000. To put that into perspective, the Lawrence sale also included the following lots: an 1855 Kellogg $50 in choice proof at $2,150 (14 known) and an attractive AU $20 1860 Clark Gruber Mountain Twenty at $900 (10-12 known).

Until the 1929 Lawrence sale of the 1855 Large Head Wass Molitor Twenty Dollar, the previous record price for any coin, was the sale of the Stickney example of the Brasher Doubloon in June of 1907 by Henry Chapman for $6,200. This auction record stood for twenty-two years until it was bested by the Wass Molitor Large Head Twenty Dollar at $7,000 in 1929! The same Brasher Doubloon sold recently for $9.36 million at the Partrick auction by Heritage in January 2021.

The Wass Molitor Large Head Twenty Dollar has been missing from nearly every major collection of pioneer gold including: Zabriskie, Garrett, Nygren, Eliasberg, Kaufman and Beck. This example is Ex: Carter 1984.

Ex: Hayes (1896), Virgil Brand, Roach (1944), Geiss (1947), Amon Carter (1984), Riverboat (2014), Colorado Native (2014 to present). Sold $568,125.00
($505,000.00 hammer)
August 15, 2021 Item photo 1090362 1796 Liberty Cap Cent S-84 PCGS MS-66+ RB CAC (Ex. Naftzger, Pogue)
The finest 1796 Liberty Cap Cent known. This museum-quality early Large Cent exhibits thick original luster and original color that is almost unbelievable. A “wow” coin that impresses the most fastidious connoisseur of copper.

The pedigree dates back to 1906 when it sold in a Henry Chapman auction and the description reads “the finest cent of this date known. Unique in this state of preservation”. Legendary copper collector Ted Naftzger acquired this coin in 1954, and owned it for over 50 years. It was included in his group of favorite 34 coins that he did not sell with the rest of his collection in 1992. These 34 coins were sold in 2008, and this coin realized $690,000 (graded PCGS MS-66 RB at the time without the plus). It then became part of the Pogue collection where it realized $705,000 in 2017 (graded PCGS MS-66+ RB CAC). Sold $483,750.00
($430,000.00 hammer)
December 19, 2021 Item photo 1132498 1827/3 Capped Bust Quarter Original PCGS Proof-65 (Ex. Brand)
A major U.S. rarity, mintage 12 (only 9 known), with a pedigree that dates back to 1867 when it was sold as part of the Joseph Zanoni Collection.

Very attractive with greens, blues and lilac toning, and appears proof-like behind the toning.

After the auction of 1867, the coin traded into notable collections of the 19th and 20th century including Virgil Brand and Waldo Newcomer. Last traded at the FUN auction of January 2019, where it sold for $444,000.

Full pedigree history:

4/1867 – Joseph Zanoni Collection (Edward Cogan), lot 103

12/1890 – Thomas Cleneay; Cleneay Collection (S.H. & H. Chapman), lot 1339

4/1904 – John G. Mills (S.H. & H. Chapman), lot 999

6/1906 – William B. Wetmore; Wetmore Collection (S.H. & H. Chapman), lot 396

Then – Virgil Brand, Journal number 33836

Then – Waldo Newcomer Then – A.J. Allen

Then – George H. Hall, according to B. Max Mehl, even though it was not part of the 5/1945 auction of Mr. Hall’s collection.

5/1950 – Jerome Kern Collection (B. Max Mehl), lot 1412

6/1957 – Wayte Raymond; Sale 49 (New Netherlands), lot 1149

8/1976 – Dorothy Nelson; ANA Convention Sale, lot 962

8/1980 – Auction ’80, lot 1177

11/1983 – Marcus J. Brown Collection, lot 2981

6/1984 – Dodson/Collier Collections, lot 3975

7/1989 – Auction ’89 (Superior), lot 570

1/2019 – Greensboro Collection Part VII, January 2019 FUN Auction Sold $469,146.38
($417,019.00 hammer)
March 27, 2022 Item photo 1132501 1792 Flowing Hair Half Dime/Half Disme PCGS MS-64
An important and high grade classic U.S. rarity. Less than 100 examples are known in all grades, and this ranks in the top 10-15 examples graded by PCGS or NGC.

Documents have shown that George Washington gave some of his personal silverware to Jefferson to have the first 1792 Half Dismes minted Sold $429,063.72
($381,389.97 hammer)
April 03, 2022 Item photo 1039600 1885 Liberty Gold Double Eagle PCGS Proof-66+ DCAM CAC
The single finest example graded by PCGS with CAC approval. Sold $394,999.88
($351,111.00 hammer)
September 05, 2021 Item photo 954946 1792 Flowing Hair Half Dime/Half Disme PCGS MS-64
An important and high grade classic U.S. rarity. Less than 100 examples are known in all grades, and this ranks in the top 10-15 examples graded by PCGS or NGC.

Documents have shown that George Washington gave some of his personal silverware to Jefferson to have the first 1792 Half Disme’s minted. Sold $388,249.88
($345,111.00 hammer)
August 29, 2021 Item photo 1032900 1857-S Three-Dollar Gold Piece S.S. Central America Shipwreck PCGS MS-67 CAC (Gold Foil Label)
Single finest known example by two full points, and the only CAC approved 1857-S $3 in any Mint State grade. Perhaps the most important single coin to be recovered from the famous shipwreck.

This was exhibited at the Philadelphia 2018 ANA as part of an extraordinary group of high quality coins recovered by the S.S. Central America shipwreck. Sold $367,875.00
($327,000.00 hammer)
August 29, 2021 Item photo 1132876 1908 Saint-Gaudens Gold Double Eagle No Motto. Wells Fargo Nevada Gold The Best One PCGS MS-69
Only 10 coins have been graded PCGS MS-69 from the whole Saint-Gaudens series (No Motto and Motto), and all are from the Wells Fargo hoard.

This particular example was considered the finest of the 10 coins, and PCGS designated it as “The Best One” on the label. Sold $286,875.00
($255,000.00 hammer)
April 10, 2022 Item photo 1028004 1895-O Morgan Silver Dollar PCGS MS-66 (Toned)
A condition rarity, that ranks in the few finest known for the date.

There can be several different reasons why coins become condition rarities. The country was still trying to recover from the economic Panic of 1893, so coins were being used more often in circulation and therefore were not being saved as often as in previous years. Then to add to the perfect storm, the Mint was ordered to strike as many coins as possible in the least amount of time. As a result, coins were not struck to the normal standards and high grade Mint State examples are almost nonexistent. Just two other coins have been graded by PCGS at MS-66, and there is a lone example finer (at MS-67). Sold $275,625.00
($245,000.00 hammer)
August 29, 2021 Item photo 1097561 1943 Lincoln Cent Bronze/Copper PCGS AU-50 BN
A “1943 Copper Penny” is one of the most famous coin errors in the world, with less than 20 examples believed to have survived.

When the U.S. Mint switched to using zinc-coated steel to produce 1943 Lincoln Cents, a small number of copper planchets leftover from 1942 slipped into the buckets of the steel planchets and then into circulation.

Although there were rumors of some 1943 pennies being struck in error (using copper/bronze planchets), none were discovered until 1947, and they were instantly coveted by collectors and even appeared in magazines, comic books and newspapers.

This particular example is known as the “Gumball Specimen”, after being discovered inside of a gumball machine in Philadelphia, across the street from the U.S. Mint. The owner’s family sold it to a local collector for $1,000 in November 1976 after it was authenticated by ANACS.

Over the past decade at GreatCollections, we have had countless calls, emails and letters about people purporting to have a new discovery of this famous error. Not a single coin was genuine, and this is only the second authentic example we have had the pleasure to handle.

The numismatic world has been lucky to have had several opportunities to bid on 1943 Copper Pennies over the past few years, however, almost all now reside in long-term collections, cherished by their owners. This is important to take into account when considering a bid on this iconic error coin.

In all five editions of the 100th Greatest U.S. Coins by Jeff Garrett, the 1943 Copper Cent has been ranked in the top 11, and in the 5th edition, ranks ahead of the unique 1822 Gold Half Eagle and 1861 Paquet Gold Double Eagle. Sold $250,875.00
($223,000.00 hammer)
January 30, 2022 Item photo 545678 Fr. 1218f 1882 $1,000 Gold Certificate Lyons / Roberts PCGS Very Fine 35
A high denomination large size Gold Certificate note of staggering rarity whose importance to collectors cannot be overstated. This Lyons-Roberts signature combination has only a handful of examples available to the public and is at the top of the examples certified. A slightly more youthful half-length portrait of Alexander Hamilton graces the right side of the face and distinguishes this design from the oft-used more bust portrait of him seen on many other U.S. notes. The back features still bright and lively orange printing, attractively framed by the broad margins around. The edges are overall quite nice and crisp with the top being the only side to show mild handling. Free of pinholes or any detracting qualities it is absolutely worthy of its comment free designation. When notes of this calibre become available you are dealing with an unimaginable rarity for which you should not throw away your shot. Sure to hold a place of prestige in any collection it enters. Sold $236,250.00
($210,000.00 hammer)
July 12, 2020 Item photo 846533 1794 Flowing Hair Silver Dollar PCGS VF-30
Far better than average strike for this early U.S. rarity, of which less than 150 examples are known in all grades (and many in poor/damaged condition).

The pedigree of this example dates back to the 19th century when it was acquired by of S. Benton Emery, a banker from New England who was ANA member #251. After Emery passed in 1914, his collection was inherited by his son-in-law, Walter P. Nichols, a future member of the ANA board of governors. It was sold by Nichols’ family at public auction in 1984 and was either acquired at the auction or afterwards by prominent collector and silver dollar specialist Jack Lee.

From the Catskill Collection. Sold $220,500.00
($196,000.00 hammer)
July 12, 2020

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