Gerry's Daily Blog Archives - December 2014

December 31, 2014

It is amazing how quickly time passed during 2014 when considering the commitment to the GFRC startup business, working through the LSCC transition and serving on Auburn Lakes Condo board of directors and webmaster role this year. Each day was fully consumed with little down time. But to be honest, I am happy with the constant challenges and more important, the learning opportunities presented by the life style shift from a semiconductor executive to numismatic entrepreneur. Equally important are the new friendships that spawned as a result of launching GFRC. Overall, 2014 was a great year and I look forward to 2015 with much anticipation.

The Venice office is functioning well and GFRC is already in a business as usual mode. Several orders were shipped after debugging some PC/printer interface issues and I managed to fit in a visit to local Venice coin shop and purchased nice original 1862 VF30 25c and 1829 O-114 R3 50c grading EF40+. As usual, I am most selective when adding coins to inventory as customer satisfaction is paramount.

As mentioned in yesterday's blog, a substantial consignment was under discussion and I moved quickly with the consignor to Express ship the first installment in time for loading onto price lists before FUN. There will be multiple installments since the consignor is dispositioning a considerable amount of Liberty Seated dimes with some Seated halves mixed in. The collection will be label as the "Birmingham Collection" during individual lot discriptions.

The first Birmingham Collection shipment contains the following coins;

Seated 10c: 1839-O Huge O NGC VF35, 1840WD PCGS50 OGH and choice; 1851-O PCGS53 very rare in this grade; 1858-S PCGS30, 1861-S PCGS55 rare; 1863-S PCGS53 very scarce; 1864-S PCGS53; 1870-S PCGS35 original and rare problem free, 1872-CC PCGS25 ideal value grade; 1875-CC BW PCGS63 and 1887-S PCGS65 challenging in MS65 or better.

Seated 50c: 1846 Tall Date PCGS45; 1846-O PCGS 60 Pittman; 1859-S PCGS40.

If one looks carefully at the initial Birmingham offering, these are pieces that one might expect to see as part of a major auction house offering. Rather, the consignor decided to work closely with GFRC to market a collection that took years to assemble. The consignor believes that GFRC customer base are collectors like him and will enjoy viewing and considering the Birmingham Collection offerings via fixed price list.

PCGS still has not posted grades for the Fall Baltimore show submission. I know that some customers are frustrated as they understood that their coins would be back by end of year.

To close today blog....I wish all my dear GFRC customers, consignors and Daily Blog visitors a safe and fun New Year's eve celebration. May 2015 be a year of good luck and much numismatic fortune.

The featured coin of the day is a very scarce 1873 No Arrows Open 3 Seated quarter graded PCGS EF45. This piece is part of a substantial Seated quarter consignment taken in late November with several key date pieces already sold. Having three 1873 NA Open 3 examples in stock constitutes a hoard given this date is so difficult to locate. I have an appointment with owner to take physical possession of the balance of this consignment on Saturday and will be adding full description on price list once the coins are in hand.



December 30, 2014

Greetings from Venice, Florida! After an uneventful two day drive, we arrived late last evening. The weather here is foggy but the temperatures are a substantial improvement from that in Maine. Lots of news to share after being away from the business for just a few days.

Coin orders were strong during the trip with five quality Seated halves selling or on hold. Liberty V nickels from the Maine Collection set have also sold well. I will be updating the website shortly capturing sold or on hold items. Two more want lists arrived and I will be catching up on those later today.

An important consignment for Liberty Seated coinage collectors has been proposed by an astute GFRC customer and consignor. The individual has decided to release a portion of his exceptional collection for sale and I'm pleased to have been selected to market and sell these fine pieces. During tomorrow's blog, I will highlight some of the coins that will comprise the initial shipment. So far, we are discussing Seated dime and halves and you should definitely check back tomorrow morning for considering first right of refusals.

Jim Poston is also shipping a new consignment and those should arrive by end of week. We continue to seek consignments for GFRC-Coins on eBay.

Coin World published their Dealer directory and Gerry Fortin Rare Coins is well featured in this publication and on the Coin World website. If you are a subscriber, I invite you to take a look at the new GFRC logo.

PCGS still has not posted the economy order grading results or shipped the order so I continue to ask for customer patience on this matter.

Today's focus is to rebuild Venice home business office and become organized and ready for packaging and shipping orders by end of day.

This is probably the last call for FUN show consignments as we leave for Orlando next Tuesday with the coin shipment window becoming narrow.

The featured coin of the day is a lovely 1834 Large 4, JR-1 bust dime graded PCGS AU55. The piece has substantial remaining luster and lovely toning. I am meeting with GFRC customer during the next few days to purchase more PCGS graded bust dimes for inventory. I believe that Bust dimes are under valued in today's market as locating fully problem free and well struck examples is much more challenging than one would anticipate.



December 27, 2014

Thank you for visiting the Blog during the holiday season!

Today's Blog is the last until December 30. Tomorrow morning sees an early start to several days of driving with overnight stop in Blacksburg, VA. Weather forecast through NY, PA, VA, NC and SC is for showers which is much better than snow or freezing rain. I'm looking forward to gaining daylight as the journey moves south....from 4:00pm sunset in Maine to almost 6:00pm in Venice.

I shipped multiple orders yesterday including sale of 1873-CC Trade $ to a local client who is building a complete set. We met at Diane's paint store in Windham and enjoyed a several hour PCGS blue box show and tell. It is always a pleasure to meet fellow collectors with the same attention to originality and eye appeal. In Bill's box was an incredible 1876 20c graded NGC AU58 with CAC green bean and a lovely 1877-CC 25c graded PCGS AU58 as standout highlights. There was consensus that NGC has become accurate and consistent while PCGS is still unable to properly grade 1875 and 1876 Carson City seated dimes struck from rusted dies (designated environmental damage).

The Maine Collection Liberty V nickel set is broken up and sales of individual pieces have been brisk. If not sold raw, the 1885, 1886 and 1901 dates are heading to NGC early at the FUN show and should be available by Friday. The same strategy is planned for the Maine Collection Two Cent piece set with the 1864 Small Motto and 1872 going to NGC and the balance being sold raw.

Another Jim Poston consignment is expected before the FUN show and I'm hearing rumours that the consignment may include some early Bust dollars and more Seated dimes.

I will probably load a few more coins to the price list this morning and close the operating by noon. GFRC customers can still order coins via email and text messaging on December 28 - 29 with Hold markers to be added on December 30.

Today's featured coin is a lovely 1908-D Barber quarter from the Maine Collection type set. This piece is out for grading but was photographed prior to submission. I expect an MS63 or better grade designation but will wait for TPG determination prior to listing an asking price. Barbers are not a current core competency so will default to the those who have the experience.



December 26, 2014

The reality of the Florida migration has set in this morning with only 48 hours to load recent consignment, package and ship orders and then box up the GFRC business. I'm in the office early this morning to secure a quick start to the day's activities. Santa did bring a nice Christmas present yesterday....bold sunlight as the rains cleared by early morning with warm temperatures and sunny blue skies. I managed to photograph the new consignment in between the day's activities.

Today's blog will be brief as there is not much to report or discuss. The PCGS submission will ship to Florida next Monday and should arrive by Wednesday. PCGS has not posted online grades as of today and is closed through the weekend for the holidays. I should know the grades once hooking up computer on Tuesday.

GFRC sales continue to be brisk as I received a substantial order this morning and will be meeting a local client this afternoon. A reminder that now is a great time to consign those duplicates pieces that might be better served as cash for upgrades or securing a missing key date in your collection.

Today's featured coin is an 1855-S quarter from Wednesday's consignment. This is a significant piece as the first year of issue from San Francisco mint and a lovely light to medium gray original example. 1855-S strikes come well circulated with a substantial price increase at the EF and AU level. This is an important artifact of pre Civil War West Coast history.



December 25, 2014

Christmas 2014 has arrived! Merry Christmas to everyone. A special thank you to those who sent Season Greetings via card or emails. Each kind thought was appreciated and most special.

I also wish to say a sincere Merry Christmas to my dear friends in Shanghai, Wuxi and Hong Kong, especially May, Harry, Antique Gu, Gloria, Taylor and Alex.

Tomorrow will be a normal GFRC business day with multiple orders in the queue for packing and shipping. The latest consignment should be posted on Friday....already one piece is sold via Daily Blog announcement.

The FUN show is less than two weeks away. If you wish to consign duplicates prior to the show, then please email or call me tomorrow to discuss the transfer logistics. GFRC and W.David Perkins will have a significant FUN show presence with 7 cases of top quality coins being offered across the four day show.

I sincerely hope Blog readers and friends enjoy a peaceful and relaxing day with family and cherish this special occasion.



December 24, 2014

Merry Christmas to my dear GFRC patrons and LSCC colleagues! Numismatics is a wonderful hobby as we not only collect coins but also great friends.

Christmas Eve has arrived....a special time of year outside of Thanksgiving for family get togethers and sharing. I enjoy the Christmas holiday much more than Thanksgiving as time with family is longer and the American addiction to shopping is finally saturated. Capitalism, thought a marvelous concept for humanity, has its dark side....greed. I won't say more on this topic and leave dear readers to consider the true meaning of holidays; an opportunity for families to reconnect in comfortable and laid back settings.

The Fortin home is busy with the arrival of Matt, his wife Chikae and granddaughter Natsumi. After everyone went to bed, Matt and I spoke until 1:00am concerning the career challenges facing the Millennials (Generation Y) as compared to the Baby Boomers. Baby Boomers experienced a unique timeframe in American history with rapid business and technology innovation. The son of French Canadian immigrants from Maine could end up at IBM building microchips at the dawn of the computer age. Today, those opportunities are rare for Millennials as omni present technology and information drive ongoing capital usage efficiencies on a global basis. Globalization resulting from the information age has leveled the playing field for the Millennials.

I'm pleased to announce that W. David Perkins and I are teaming together at the Central States show in April 2015. We are splitting a corner table and adding this important numismatic event to 2015 calendar.

Images for the Liberty V nickels from the Maine Collection are mostly online. If not sold by FUN, these pieces will be in their Wayte Raymond holders in my FUN show case. Offers are welcomed as I wish to rechannel the proceeds into incremental bust and seated inventory.

As mentioned in yesterday's blog, a new consignment arrived. Included in the consignment are;

1/2 cent: 1803 rotated reverse left, rich brown gray patina

3 cent silver: 1862 PCGS EF40

Seated 10c: 1839-O Huge O PCGS VF25 and choice; 1884-S PCGS VF30 original gray

Seated 25c: 1838 VF30 gray; 1854 rotated reverse left 80 degrees; 1855-S F15 original gray; 1873-S VF20 original gray

Barber 25c: 1899 PCGS MS62 lustrous

The featured coin of the day is a lovely piece of Americana; an 1806 draped bust half dollar, O-109 No Stems with even original gray surfaces. This early half dollar has excellent eye appeal at the assigned VG10 grade level. Pricing is attractive and reflects a small blemish at the bust line but overall appearance renders this piece as a fine collector coin.



December 23, 2014

Thank you for visiting the Blog each day. I hope your Christmas preparations are completed and the cheer of the holiday season is upon you and family.

I awoke this morning to very sad news indeed.....Joe Cocker died yesterday at the age of 70. This reminded me of awaking years ago to learn John Lennon had been murdered in NYC. Joe Cocker's cover of "With a Little Help from My Friends" was a song that truly moved me whenever heard....I would always stop whatever was at hand to enjoy each and every performance. There was a very special quality to Joe's gritty and unique voice. But there was more. Attending a Joe Cocker concert was an emotional experience especially after Pricess Diana's death and Joe's rendering of "You Are So Beautiful" in memory of Diana. Joe Cocker's musical catalog was mostly covers of other individual's song and he brought a remarkable ability to transform these songs into his own. He will be missed. It is inevitable that the great musicians of the Woodstock generation will have passed within the next 10 year. Already, Jack Bruce is gone....Alvin Lee is gone.....Lou Reed is gone and now Joe Cocker. It is indeed a very say day.

Returning to the Blog at 9:30am....there is some news to share.

The PCGS Baltimore economy submission is still in queue at PCGS. I've called today and the submission is in the validation phase so grades should be posted tonight or tomorrow. PCGS agreed to redirect the shipment to Florida address to avoid a package forwarding issue. My apology to GRFC customers who are involved in this submission. The turnaround time is well beyond my expectations.

Another consignment arrived yesterday at Windham PO and is being delivered today. This consignor likes to mix things up and did not provide a contents pre-alert. His past consignments have typically been Seated dimes and quarters. I will share more details tomorrow.

GFRC pre Christmas orders have been surprisingly strong and I appreciate your kind purchases.

The featured coin of the day is a scarce 1838-O V-2 half dime graded PCGS VF30 and was struck from typically eroded obverse die paired with a crisp reverse die. I believe this half dime grades a full EF40 based on residual reverse details and wear but the weak obverse, due to striking characteristics, resulted in a VF30 designation. As one New Orleans Seated coinage expert previously mentioned, it is very difficult to locate V-2 specimens with a full LIBERTY on the scroll.





December 22, 2014

The holiday week is upon us and hope that most of your Christmas shopping is done as time is running out. I'm in an acceptable position with one last gift to purchase today following by gift wrapping.

Renee arrived on schedule yesterday evening and it is alway a joy to have her home. For those of you new to GFRC, Renee is my 27 daughter who is conducting second year studies at Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine in Blacksburg, VA. After securing an undergrad and masters at Wesleyan, Renee worked at a veterinary clinic in Washington, DC for several years and decided to pursue her dream of caring for animals as a full fledged doctor.

I spent the better part of Sunday loading more offerings on price lists including an 1838-O V-2 half dime graded PCGS VF30 and a second 1853 No Arrows half dime in raw EF40. With the Florida transition less than a week away, consolidating and organizing inventory is paramount so that GFRC can open shop immediately on December 30. Already, I have two Sarasota area appointments to secure consigned or to be purchased coins before the FUN show. Florida activity timing is important since we travel to Orlando on Tuesday, January 6 with FUN setup being Wednesday afternoon.

I received a phone call yesterday concerning a circulated Seated dime lot for review and potential purchase. The individual mentioned there were several hundred pieces in the lot. I will continue to follow up on this opportunity in early 2015. For the time being, the Eric Streiner love token hoard will be next on the priority list after completing the Florida transition and FUN show.

Several seated dimes from my collection were added to the price list yesterday. It really is staggering to consider that since 1988, I have amassed nearly 1600 seated dimes. These are not common date Good to Fine pieces, but rather EF through Mint State examples that serve as the web-book reference collection and the PCGS Set Registry set. I will slowly disburse this collection through the GFRC business over the next five years. Listed on Sunday were 1849 F-104 RPD graded PCGS MS62 and an 1886 F-116 graded NGC MS62. Assigned MS62 grades may not seem exciting but these are only technical opinions which are unable to capture beauty and eye appeal with a simple numerical rating. Following is the 1849 F-104 which is probably one of the finest Repunched Date examples known. I performed a quick check of the Top 100 sets in the Open Registry and yes, no one has a mint state example of this variety. The luster underlying the toning is bold and well accentuates the light original patina.



December 21, 2014

There are mornings when writing a Daily Blog is straightforward...the ideas or thoughts flow through the keyboard and onto the screen. Then there are times when I sit at the blank laptop screen, drinking coffee and wondering about a topic that is worthwhile to discuss. This is one of those mornings and the fact that I was up until 12:30am reading J.K. Rowling's The Casual Vacancy may be a factor. Actually, this is my first Rowling book regardless of the Harry Potter fame and a moving book about life in a small England town. Rowling is a master with a descriptive paint brush as she delves deep into human psyche and illustrates complex human emotions and social interactions that form provincial life.

Saturday was a pleasant but cold day and I did manage to secure a short walk. Serious exercising will commence once in Florida as walking country roads in Maine during the winter is really dangerous. With plowed snow on the roadside shoulders, there is little room to maneuver. On several occasions during the summer and fall months, I've had to jump into the bushes to avoid inattentive drivers. Is it my imagination or are people becoming more distracted behind the wheel these days? Here in Maine, we well remember Stephen King being struck by an inattentive driver while walking a country road.

GFRC business continues to prosper with Bank of America small business support. Adding credit card capability has had an immediate impact. Yesterday, a USB BoA check scanner arrived via Fedex and will be installed and debugged today. Seeking options to improve efficiency is high on my list as more time can be dedicated to coins rather than all of the administrative tasks associated with a small business.

Effective Monday, I will be changing the GFRC mailing address to 502 Auburn Lakes Circle, Venice Florida 34292 on the website. Check payments should be held and mailed to the Florida address starting December 27. I will continue to take credit card and Paypal payments through December 27. During the holiday week and our transition to Florida, I wish to ensure that check payments are not caught in the USPS mail forwarding loop. USPS has proven to be unreliable or works with significant delays, therefore it is best to be proactive to provide uninterrupted customer service.

More consignments and Newps appeared on the price list yesterday and I still have a queue to work through today. One of those loaded yesterday is the featured coin of the day. This is a sweet 1842 Seated quarter that has been in a collection for years and is absolutely fresh to market. The former owner enjoys early type coins in their raw state and is not a fan of TPGs. The fields on this large date 1842 quarter are mildly proof like and the patina is antique gray.



December 20, 2014

I hope that everyone is well as we head into the holiday week. My daughter Renee arrives tomorrow from Blacksburg, VA and looking forward to her company and week long stay.

Photography and loading consignments were yesterday's focus and I did manage some reasonable progress. About 75% of the Morgans purchased on Thursday are already on hold, the 2 Reales consignment pieces are sold and I purchased four better date Liberty Seated quarters from a local friend while conducting daily Windham post office visit. Maine must be a hot bed for early type numismatics as the LSCC president and JRCS treasurer were reported seen hanging out in the Windham post office lobby discussing coins....

Want List response is overwhelming as five GFRC customers have already provided their needs via the new spreadsheet. One customer even pointed out a error....a missing date in one of the Bust coinage tabs. Thank you to everyone for considering the Want List program and I promise to be diligent in locating better examples consistent with your requests.

In yesterday's blog, I mentioned the "collecting experience" as a topic for today's discussion. After being immersed with GFRC business for nearly two years, important learnings are starting to coalesce.

GFRC is much more than a transactional coin business. Rather, I believe that many GFRC customers seek the "transcendent" experience of collecting. Each individual approaches collecting for different reasons and then maps out his/her own unique adventure. The journey includes the thrill of the hunt, learning about early American history, potentially identifying things that no has else has learned and sharing the experience with other "connoisseurs" who also are involved in similar journeys. My role is that of supporting the "connoisseurs" with their numismatic adventure through advice, friendship, information and access to coins that align with personal goals. Considering the overall United States population, coin "connoisseurs" are a diminutive but passionate group of individuals. Embarking on the numismatic journey by one's self can be daunting considering the monies involved and the required skill sets. At GFRC, my goal is to enable that journey by being accessible for camaradarie via email and phone chats, providing creative information resources (the web-book, Open Registry etc.) and locating/selling quality coins. As my good friend Bill Bugert mentioned during a recent phone call, GFRC has become my life style. Like my customers, I am also undertaking a personal adventure and attempting to become knowledgeable in all early silver type designs and denominations but at an accelerated pace while expanding my circle of good friends. Please don't under estimate this latter point. As one matures in the Hobby of Kings, the friends made during the journey will become more imporant than the coins themselves........

The featured coin of the day is a lovely 1856-O Seated half dime added to price list yesterday. It is the V-3 variety and resides in new PCGS AU53 holder without CAC attempt. Thank you for stopping by today!




December 19, 2014

Good morning everyone and thank you for visiting the Blog today. There is much to share this morning.

I checked PCGS submission status and they are currently grading economy orders submitted at the Baltimore show. The GFRC order should be graded today and shipped early next week based on past history. This order has over 50 coins and a large number of customers involved and I thank everyone for their patience.

The downloadable Want List form is completed with all Liberty Seated denominations (except double dimes) and added half dime through quarter Draped and Capped bust tabs. Already, one GFRC customer completed his Want List and submitted yesterday.

Yesterday brought an early morning visit to my favorite coin shop and the timing could not have been better. A substantial lot of nice original better date Morgans had been purchased and I was the first to view these new items. Many of the pieces had the "Gerry Look" as Jim Poston loves to say; nice light gray original EF/AU pieces with no issues whatsoever. I bought 13 pieces and an 1907 Liberty V nickel graded PCGS MS64 CAC during the visit. All are posted on price lists and images are due today.

Speaking of coin photography, Maine will enjoy several days of cooler temperatures but sunny skies. This is a blessing as two consignments and yesterday's Morgans are in queue for imaging today. I'm also re-imaging some of the Maine Collection Liberty V nickels that did not photo well during earlier session.....Being in Florida will definitely simplify this aspect of the online business.

The retail asking prices for the New Orleans consignment are settled and those items will be loaded to price list today in between packing and shipping last minute orders. I will be emailing images to those individuals who requested first right of refusal on certain pieces within the consignments.

During tomorrow's Blog, I wish to touch upon the "collecting experience" as our hobby is much more than just a personal activity to consume free time. The Internet has transformed the numismatic hobby and will share a few thoughts on this topic.

The featured coin of the day is one of the remaining Bust halves from the Maine Collection that has not yet visited NGC for grading. This 1819 O-111 is an choice original example as illustrated below. Please email or call if there is potential interest.



December 18, 2014

Only a week before Christmas, have you finished shopping yet? I'm still not done but gaining ground.....

There are several items to report in today's blog. Most of yesterday afternoon and evening was spent on Want List spreadsheet construction. This function is online and located on For Sale page link that contains individual price list icons. Below is the icon and if clicked, downloads an Excel spreadsheet with individual Liberty Seated denomination tabs. I was able to complete half dimes thru half dollars tabs including Top 100 Varieties (dimes) and Top 25 Varieties (quarters). To take advantage of GFRC Want List service, simply follow the instructions on the first tab and fill in your needs and email back to me. Once in hand, I will add to master database and have available during coin show and coin shop buying activities.

Capped bust coinage tabs will also be added before heading to Florida. The spreadsheet is also a convenient personal collection tracking instrument. At GFRC, I am most serious about customer service. Better information management is key for delivering the best possible service.

Other news includes the arrival of New Orleans consignment with the 1838-O PCGS VF30 V-2 half dime being a near gem for the grade. There is also a great 1854-O PCGS G6 F-102 shattered obverse die in the group that grades full VG8 or slightly better. PCGS has a habit of under grading the F-102 variety....grading should be performed based on reverse wear and not obverse given the uneven obverse surface that is prone to early wear.

As if not busy enough, discussions are in progress with some old Shanghai coin collector friends concerning increased sourcing of early type coins and other items into that market. This is a significant opportunity with challenging logistics to overcome. I spent many 2009 - 2013 weekends at Shanghai's Yunzhou and Lugong coin markets and reconnecting with former friends would be a pleasure.

Today's featured coin is an early draped bust quarter that needs a new home for the Holidays. This 1806 quarter is the B-9 die state (d) variety with bisecting obverse die crack and ample details for the assigned grade. Surfaces are toned an even gray with deeper rose highlights towards the rims.



December 17, 2014

Good morning once again and thank you for visiting with GRFC on daily basis. I am gratified by the amount of individuals who check in each day.

I'm in particularly good spirits this morning after Craig Wayne Boyd won The Voice competition. Craig was the underdog going into the semi finals and finale but clearly was the stand out entertainer among the final four. Led by Blake Sheldon, country/rock music is alive and well and reminds me that many Americans are still traditionally grounded with hard work being important and spiritual values being a core element of a happy life.

Yesterday's announcement of the Mexican 2 Reales brought about a feeding frenzy as I received multiple inquiries on the three offerings. The initial inquirer has committed to buy the three once images are available. The 1840 No Drap PCGS AU58 Seated half dime is also sold and heading into an advanced collection.

I made progress posting the Maine Collection Liberty V Nickels and will try to add more images today.

As mentioned during Monday's blog, today's primary focus is building a Want List function to efficiently capture and manage customer needs. The design is mentally defined and just a matter of hours to construct a master Want List tracking system. This should be completed by Friday followed by reviewing older customer emails for capturing prior want list requests.

Maine's weather brings another day of heavy rain and there will be no shipments today. Rather new orders will be in the mail tomorrow. The decision to accept major credit cards by phone has dramatically improved order to shipment lead times and allows payment acceptance and shipment the same or next day.

I enjoyed a nice conversation with Jim Poston yesterday as we continue to improve our GFRC and GFRC-Coins (eBay) cross marketing efforts. Jim reports buying a mini love token hoard and these will be heading to the GFRC Love Token price list shortly. One of our goals is to become the leading online Love Token retailer in the country. I already have ideas for restructuring the love token price list to simplify shopping for a specific name or set of engraved initials.

Today's featured coin is an 1872 F-105 Double Die Reverse dime and listed as part of the Top 100 and Ultimate sets in the Open Registry. It is a consigned piece.....the consignor called yesterday to chat and is motivated to find a good home for this popular variety. We welcome offers if there is potential interest on the nice even gray example that is accurately graded. The weak head details are consistently seen for this variety including the web-book plate coin.



December 16, 2014

Good morning to loyal Daily Blog readers and thank you for visiting once again.

This season's Voice finale was quite memorable with Craig Wayne Boyd and Matt McAndrew showcasing country rock and modern rock/pop. Both individuals are sitting #1 and #2 on the I-Tunes chart this morning for their original compositions. I suspect that Matt McAndrew will win the The Voice but Craig Wade Boyd has been discovered and will be a new star in the country music world. As a side note....Blake Sheldon is a true gentleman and supportive coach. Did viewers note during last night's Craig and Blake duet that Blake held back on vocals and let Craig carry the song throughout the performance. Probably the worst coach/contestant duet was several seasons ago with Christine A. She dominated the duet and demonstrated what I believe to be insecurity.

I'm sure at some point in our working lives that we've come across the saying, "How can I soar with eagles when I work with turkeys?" Well, this phrase took on literal meaning yesterday while outdoors imaging Steve Crain's half dimes and the Maine Collection V Nickels. Take a look......clicking on the image will provide access to higher resolution version.

About 20 wild turkeys had meandered into the backyard while I was imaging and could not resist capturing the moment for today's blog. Wild turkeys are fairly common and visit the property year round due to the wide space and acreage.

Meandering back to coins, I received a spectacular consignment from new individual yesterday and so pleased that GFRC was chosen to handle his coins rather than submitting to auction house. The lot features three Mexican 2 Reales recently graded by NGC and five Liberty Seated half dimes just back from PCGS without CAC attempt. The 2 Reales are musuem quality with lovely original patina while the half dimes are above average quality with choice original surfaces. Following are the consigned pieces;

2 Reales:1745 Mo M Mexico NGC EF-45; 1781 Mo FF Mexico NGC AU-58; 1795 Mo FM Mexico NGC VF-25

Seated 5c: 1840 ND PCGS AU58; 1841-O PCGS EF45; 1851-O PCGS VF30; 1854-O AR PCGS EF40; 1856-O PCGS AU53

These will be posted on Wednesday to price lists with images due by Friday.....yes, another few days of rain/freezing rain for the mid week is forecasted.

I'm also expecting another consignment to arrive either today or tomorrow from the New Orleans Collection. This individual is slowly dispositioning duplicates and I'm flattered that GFRC will be handling his coins.

The Maine Collection Liberty V Nickel set is posted on Shield and Liberty V Nickel price list. Images will be added throughout the next fews days. I'm offering the entire set as housed in pristine Wayte Raymond album pages for $5500. There are several later pieces that need upgrading for overall consistency while the 1885 and 1886 dates serve as solid foundation for further improvements. Once again, this set has been sitting in a Maine bank box since 1965 and I would love to sell it intact with the album pages.

The featured coin of the day is a lovely 1880 Liberty Seated dime graded NGC MS63 and a recent arrival. This business strike is from earlier proof dies and is designated as F-102a in the web-book. Reverse die is rusted with die pitting obvious on the denomination. Proof like surfaces are covered with old album ring toning, especially on the reverse.



December 15, 2014

Welcome to last full week before the holidays. Raymond will enjoy a bright sunny day allowing me to catch up on residual photography and mailing out more orders.

If you visited the For Sale link this morning, then you might have seen the addition of GFRC-Coins icon and direct link into my eBay store subsidiary. For those of you new to the price list page, GFRC-Coins is eBay subsidiary managed by Jim Poston and Kim Dade. Jim has developed a keen eye for nice original early type coins and continues to aid with Gerry Fortin Rare Coins inventory expansion and sales volume. Even with all the marketing efforts, there are still many collectors who are unaware of Gerry Fortin Rare Coins and the Liberty Seated Dime web-book. Cross marketing with Jim should continue to increase visibility for the combined businesses.

In yesterday's blog, I mentioned Want Lists. To be completely honest, I have relied on memory to manage customer Want Lists and this is no longer possible. With customer base and inventory expansion, my poor brain is unable to keep track of individual customer requests and it is time to develop a sophisticated Want List system that ensures easy access to customer information, regardless of being in the office or at a major show. By Wednesday, a master GFRC Want List tracking sheet will be constructed......I thought about approaches last evening and have an idea that will be simple to administer and therefore, become part of the everyday GFRC fabric. Once the Want List module is constructed, then it will be announced in the Daily Blog and hope that customers may consider resubmitting updated needs. Please accept my apology for not structuring a solid Want List system from day 1. But moving forward, I am committed to increasing customer service and executing Want Lists will be one of the reasons that customers enjoy doing business with GFRC.

During the weekend, I had multiple converations with Jason Feldman, LSCC South Regional Director, and the FUN regional meeting agenda is set. If at the FUN show, please consider attending the LSCC meeting on Friday morning at 9:00am. W. David Perkins (JRCS Treasurer) and Chris Pilliod (Fly-In Club President) will be the featured guests with excellent educational presentations.

Today's featured coin is a sweet 1853 No Arrow half dime graded PCGS MS63 and approved by CAC. The 1853 NA date is always in demand and is consistently challenging to locate in choice condition. I am so proud to have this example in stock.



December 14, 2014

Venice, FL migration is just two weeks away and we are looking forward to a warmer climate for three months. Renee flies home on December 21 for the holidays and will return to Blacksburg, VA with us as we find our way to Florida. I'm pleased to be traveling through central PA and western VA this year rather than the I-95 corridor between NYC and Richmond.

To best serve Gerry Fortin Rare Coin customers during the holiday period (December 21 to January 1) and to avoid mail forwarding issues, I ask for your help with the following order and payment strategy;

Orders between December 21 - December 28 - Coin will go on hold for check payment after December 28 to Venice FL address. For immediate shipment, Credit Cards and Paypal Only.

Orders after December 28 - Normal payment via mailed check to 502 Auburn Lakes Circle, Venice, FL 34292

The GFRC Venice, FL mailing address will be updated on website effective December 27.

Yesterday's blog was short due to 7:00am drive to house on Androscoggin Lake. I had appointment with oil and burner service for annual furnace cleaning and to winterize the property. It was snowing and the roads had not been plowed; thank goodness for a solid 4 wheel drive Toyota Tacoma.

This morning's blog is being written with a warm cup of coffee and that Sunday morning laid back ease. I still have five more Capped bust and Seated halves to load on the price list today followed by writing Christmas cards. Sunny skies are predicted for this afternoon but if the cloud cover does not lift before 1:00pm, then photography of latest consignments and Steve Crain's 1843 half dimes (Gobrecht Journal article) will be delayed until Monday. Again, I can't wait to get to Florida where planning coin photography is a non issue. I just step outside the lanai and shoot!

During the week of December 15, GFRC will be receiving two more consignments and third is under negotiations. I'm also in discussion with a significant consignor concerning a substantial transfer at FUN show. Therefore, GFRC inventory will continue to grow in early 2015 and I'm so pleased with the "enjoyable" side of this business....meeting new customers and establishing friendships.

The focus of Monday's Blog will be customer Want Lists. I have not constructed an adequate system for capturing customer want list needs and the time has come to innovate and further improve GFRC services.

Today's coin of the day is a monster in terms of eye appeal and sheer beauty. I used the geeky term "Eye Appeal^2" sparingly for special coins. We all have a few of these types of coins in our know, the ones we could look at for hours to enjoy spectacular toning and powerful luster. This 1870 half dollar graded NGC MS64 is one of those pieces. I wrote this description yesterday, "The surfaces are highly reflective and proof like with rich rose/gold and iridescent toning on the obverse and lighter gold near the rims on the reverse. Under bright light, this piece simply explodes with luster and flash. Also well struck throughout and no blemishes."



December 13, 2014

Welcome to the weekend. Maine weather is on an improving trend and some sun is due to appear on Sunday.

The previously mentioned consignment arrived yesterday with a nice offering across multi denominations. Individual pieces are as follows. Goal is to finalize asking price on Saturday and have these listed on Sunday.

Seated 5c: 1853 NA PCGS MS63 CAC....Choice original and LDS reverse.

Seated 10c: 1880 NGC MS63 strikes from proof dies, nice gold

Seated 25c: 1845 PCGS EF45 Briggs 3-C RPD and cracked obverse, even light gray

Bust 50c: 1818 O-112 PCGS VF35 CAC...even medium gray; 1825 O-114 PCGS EF45 CAC even gray

Seated 50c: 1839 PCGS VF35 Drapery...gray; 1844-O PCGS VF30 and so original; 1870 NGC MS64 with spectacular toning and eye appeal; 1874 PCGS EF40 CAC...light gray and pretty.

I'm pleased to report that another consignment is in transit to GFRC. The consignment features a group of NGC graded Mexican 2 Reales and secondly, some great Liberty Seated half dimes in choice toned condition. The latter group is just back from PCGS without a chance for CAC approval attempt. This lot should arrive by Tuesday next week.

This morning's blog will be shorter than normal as I must run out for an early morning appointment. Let's hope the sun is shining by the time I return mid morning.

The featured coin of the day is the 1829 NGC MS62 CAC half dime mentioned in yesterday's blog. I've done the best possible to come up with these images regardless of the inadequate outdoor lighting conditions This piece is special with proof like fields and old time album toning and looks much better in hand that on the images. Let's see if this coin sells before the Orlando FUN show as it should......don't wait on this fresh to market item.




December 12, 2014

Yesterday was a busy multi tasking day. The Geek Squard visit resulted in the family tower PC functioning again with the hard drive emerging without issues. This was a considerable relief and life returned to normal.....

The GFRC/W. David Perkins FUN show table assignment is announced; we are at table 1528 which is near the exhibits. The FUN show floor plan can be found at this link. Current plan has GFRC with four cases and W. David Perkins with three at this corner table. David will have 11 Gobrecht Dollars 1836-1839 at the table; these dollars are duplicates from the Julius Korein Collection. Gerry will be featuring three cases of holdered inventory and one case of raw items. David will also be a guest speaker at Friday's LSCC meeting and will discuss Gobrecht Dollars struck during 1836-1839.

Jim Poston and I spoke yesterday to align near term activities. One of our goals is online cross marketing of GFRC to Jim's eBay customers and conversely, the marketing of GFRC-Coins as a viable option to my customers. Daily Blog readers are well aware of the partnership with Jim Poston, but cross marketing to the entire numismatic hobby is paramount for fully leveraging our relationship......Separately, Jim is expressing another nice bust/seated consignment today and I should have details posted during the weekend.

As the GerryFortinRareCoins reputation for buying and stocking quality early type coins grows, more individuals are offering coins for outright purchase. Though being most selective on what is acquired through this channel, I did purchase several great pieces during the past two weeks. The first is 1829 MS62 half dime sitting in early NGC green label fatty holder and approved by CAC. This is a marvelous piece with proof like surfaces and rich rose/blue/gray patina and is museum quality. The second is an 1861 3 cent silver piece graded NGC MS65 and approved by CAC. This piece has bold mint frost and incredible die clashing on both obverse and reverse. I hope to have these two pieces online by early next week.

Finally, Steve Crain dropped off a group of 1843 half dimes for photography in support of his upcoming Issue #122 Gobrecht Journal article. Based on current weather forecast, these will be imaged on Sunday or worst case Monday.

The featured coin of the day is a well circulated but strictly original 1809 bust half dollar. Considering the VG10 assigned grade, this is an attractive specimen and would be a great Christmas gift to a younger numismatist.



December 11, 2014

This is day 3 of the rain northeaster and luckily, we've escaped freezing rain and icing conditions. This morning's weather forecast calls for rain and potential snow through end of Friday, then cloudy conditions on Saturday. So the next time for photography will be this coming Sunday.....let's hope.

Yesterday was not a lucky day as I did the unthinkable.....knocking over the tower PC while writing Christmas cards at the home computer desk. Using USPS address database seemed like a great idea until long legs pushed the tower case onto its side with a crash. Yes, the PC was on and the hard drive was spinning. The blue screen of hard drive death appeared and now the PC will not boot. This PC was tied to an unexpected headache that needs immediate attention.

This next topic borders on the bizarre and appeared this morning. The U Maine campuses have been ordered to remove all aspects of Christmas decorations. Even book store employees will be disciplined if uttering Merry Christmas to customers. We live in a sad world when a traditional holiday celebration can be bullied and University leadership lacks backbone. I'm sure there will be more to this story in the upcoming days.

As for GFRC news, retail pricing for the Maine Collection Liberty Nickel set is done for an interested party, handled a few orders along with spreadsheet and financial tracking items. The amount of overhead to support a small coin business may be surprising to collectors. The gorgeous 1871 PCGS AU58 half dollar that was featured here on November 30 is on hold with a new customer.

The featured coin of the day is the 1885 Liberty nickel from the Maine Collection. This piece is as pulled from the Wayte Raymond holder; the faint rose/gold toning and two darker areas by rim at barely seen on the actually coin. Once again, poor December lighting conditions requires use of too much contrast during image processing and the result is over emphasis of any surface conditions. I grade this piece at minimum AU58 or better...... This piece will not be found on any price list. My plan is to submit to NGC for grading as I don't work with V nickels every day and a third party opinion is warranted given the rapid pricing increases in AU or better. One thing is certain, this piece is strictly original and will grade.



December 10, 2014

We endured rain yesterday evening and into today, but luckily the temperature remains slightly above 32F to avoid freezing on tree limbs or a conversion to snow. I'm thankful for uninterrupted power and having a normal GFRC business day despite the inclement weather.

Much was accomplished yesterday as added two new Seated dime varieties to the web-book (1854WA F-112 and 1876-CC F-135). Each variety takes over 2 hours to accomplish due to macro photography, image editting and webpage creation. The highly integrated nature of the web-book options means lots of html editting for a seamless user appearance. For every macro image seen on a webpage, I typical take 10 or more images at different lighting angles to ensure the best possible representation for subtle variety diagnostic points.

John Okerson and I are discussing how to add Bust Half Dollar Overton varieties to the open registry. This is a sizable project as there are 878 entries in an Ultimate set......really a staggering number; some sub sets will be necessary so the discussion continues.

I received several hold requests for the latest New Orleans consignment. Thank you to GFRC customers who check the blog each day and take action when consignment previews are listed. Consignors are also pleased when hearing of potential early sales.

Each day is busy at GFRC and today is no exception. I'm preparing an eBay shipment to Jim Poston along with customer shipments and will attempt to list the entire Maine Collection Liberty Nickel set on price list. Images will come this weekend once this storm finally moves out to sea. I will also list a price for the entire Maine Collection Liberty nickel set including its Wayte Raymond album pages as would enjoy selling this set intact. Please remember that this set has been in a bank vault since the mid 1960s and is incredibly fresh to market. No wholesale requests from other dealers please....either the set goes to a collector at a discounted retail price or I will sell each nickel separately.

During 2015 and as a result of access to the Maine Collection 1/2 cent and large cent sets, GFRC will also be adding copper coin product lines. It really is logical to use each Maine Collection set as a personal learning opportunity, acquiring variety reference books and then marketing individual pieces where possible. Today's featured coin is from a recent small consignment and is an attractive large cent with chocolate coloring and strong deep blue highlights in the fields. This 1848 large cent is graded PCGS AU58 and approved by CAC.



December 9, 2014

This is much to offer in this morning's blog. First, a close friend read the December 7 blog concerning Consumerism and Globalization and passed along a copy of Thorstein Veblen's The Theory of the Leisure Class. Veblen's book was originally published in 1899 while the lent copy is a Penguin's book edition circa 1994. Veblen, born in 1857, was well educated with degrees from Carleton College, John Hopkins, and Yale (Ph. D. in philosophy). My goal over the next few days is to break away from GFRC and attempt to read this 400 page thome concerning turn of the 20th century economics and sociology and report back to Blog readers.

I received an email yesterday from the New Orleans consignor that another important shipment is en route to Maine. For GFRC customers who collect small denominations New Orleans coinage, this consignment will prove to be interesting. Highlights include the difficult 1838-O half dime PCGS-30, V-2, an 1838-O PCGS MS62 dime, 1839-O F-104 NGC AU Details (Top 100) dime, 1840-O F-109a EF dime and 1854-O F-102 PCGS 6 (Top 100) dime. The last piece is the shattered obverse variety that is always in demand.

Concerning the Liberty Seated Collectors Club, the E-Gobrecht posting of potential club logos produced some exciting results. One of our club members is a graphic artist and has generated several outstanding club logo designs for membership consideration in the January issue. Based on LSCC membership feedback, a logo will be selected by end of January and will be seen on forthcoming educational material.

Finally our eBay subsidiary GFRC-Coins, is seeing strong sales at fair prices for collector grade seated and bust coins. If you have duplicates or other properties that are simply gathering dust, then please consider using GFRC-Coins to convert those items into usable cash. Navigating eBay these days should be left to those with experience and the infrastructure to quickly list and ship items given eBay's demanding performance standards. So you know, the remaining Massachusetts 3 cent silver pieces along with some of my idle dimes are shipping to Jim Poston for eBay sales. I am very pleased with GFRC-Coins results to date and do invite GFRC consignors and customers to take advantage of this service.

The featured coin of the day is once again from the Type Set consignment and is a beautifully toned 1840-O Briggs 1-A quarter graded NGC AU50. I doubt that this piece has been through CAC review as the surfaces are perfectly original and the grading is accurate. I am so proud to offer coins at this quality level.


December 8, 2014

I can't remember looking forward to driving 26 hours to Florida as much as this year. The Maine weather is and will be downright ugly this week. This morning's temperature is a balmy 7F and Tuesday/Wednesday will bring several inches of rain. Rain at 33-34F is a recipe for freezing conditions and power outages, especially in the Maine foothills like Raymond. So if there is no Daily blog on Wednesday morning, then GFRC visitors will understand why. Shipments delay may also occur this week, so I ask for patience and understanding.

Sales were brisk this weekend with much gratitude to GFRC customers who decided to add nice coins to their collections. A Sunday evening call with Jim Poston indicates that eBay sales are also strong with another consignment heading to Maine tomorrow. We may sell the Maine Collection Indian Head Cent set intact as Jim has a potential buyer in the mid West. The Maine Collection Liberty V Nickel set is also quite attractive with the 1885 grading AU55 and the 1886 EF45 to AU50.

GFRC price lists are fully updated with images. I've also added a Foreign Silver coin price list as of yesteday and will be seeking out nicely toned foreign silver pieces when available. It may take awhile to populate this price list due to my discriminating selection criteria.

The featured coin of the day is from the Type Set consignment previously mentioned. His 1878-S PCGS AU50 CAC Trade Dollar sold yesterday and there are other beautiful pieces worthy of your consideration. This 1875-S PCGS MS62 WB-18 half dollar has special eye appeal beyond the assigned MS62. Surfaces feature creamy luster with faint toning. My images appear slightly washed out given December sunlight me....this is a spectacular half dollar.



December 7, 2014

Yesterday evening, the Maine Public Broadcast Network (MPBN) was conducting it annual fund raising campaign and offering a set of 10 Ed Sullivan show DVDs for $200. Excerpts from various Ed Sullivan shows were being shown and the presentation captured my attention. There I was, being nostalgic about my childhood days and wondering how and why the world had changed so much in the past 50 years. Bedtime came early and I awoke this morning with the following thoughts for today's Daily Blog.

Wikipedia indicates that "Consumerism" is "a social and economic order and ideology that encourages the acquisition of goods and services in ever-greater amounts. Early criticisms of consumerism are present in the works of Thorstein Veblen (1899). Veblen's subject of examination, the newly emergent middle class arising at the turn of the twentieth century,[1] comes to fruition by the end of the twentieth century through the process of globalization. In this sense, consumerism is usually considered a part of media culture."

Using Wikipedia again, "Globalization" is the process of international integration arising from the interchange of world views, products, ideas and other aspects of culture.[1][2] Advances in transportation and telecommunications infrastructure, including the rise of the telegraph and its posterity the Internet, are major factors in globalization, generating further interdependence of economic and cultural activities.[3]

Consumerism and globalization are incredibly powerful forces tranforming our lives since the days of Ed Sullivan. From childhood, we are taught that happiness is a function of consuming products. Why else could U.S. culture evolve to the point that people wish to end Thanksgiving day celebrations early so they can shop? As a society, we have been brain washed into believing that consuming is all important. While consumerism became engrained in our psyche, globalization occurred due to advancements in air transport and the growth of multi national corporations.

Globalization leads to the influx of inexpensive goods into the U.S. to feed American consumerism.......On the surface, this may be viewed as a positive (especially by the politicians) as cheap goods brings happiness to the masses, fuels profits for the large multi-nationals (Walmart) and sustains a low inflation rate for certain components of the Consumer Price Index (CPI).

But globalization and consumerious present negative forces at work in the current U.S. economy. My close friend, Greg Johnson, brought this point to my attention based on an Economist article he has recently read. Globalization is leveling the goods producing playing field throughout the world. For individuals living in developing Asia and South America countries, globalization allows for improved living conditions and healthier lives (as long as multi-nationals do not exploit workers). But in the U.S., the opposite is seen for the lower class and portions of the middle class. Living standards are dropping and at some point will reach an equilibrium with those found in developing countries.

Have you ever wondered why there is such a disparity between CPI components leading to essentially no U.S. inflation as reported by the United States government? The reasons include the forces of consumersim and globalization at work. As more U.S. citizens consume increasing amounts of inexpensive goods (and much of it from abroad), inflation is tame. But what about health care and college educations? These are CPI components with minimal impact from globalization and provide a better representation of U.S. based inflation calculated from products/services produced and delivered in America with little if any foreign competition.

So how does this monologue apply to numismatics and Gerry Fortin Rare Coins? I'm not sure.....maybe, if you are tired of consumerism and find comfort and solace with beautiful historical artifacts and the associated knowledge acquired, then there is hope for the Hobby of Kings.......collecting pleasing 19th Century coins requires a considerably higher mental involvement than outright consumerism. Then there are the special relationships formed among coin collecting colleagues.

Today's featured coin is delightful in its simplicity.....a choice original 1831 half dime from a time when hard currency was the backbone of the United States economy and Andrew Jackson was president. This lovely piece would enjoy finding a new home for the holidays......




December 6, 2014

Our migration to Florida can't come soon enough! This morning, we are experiencing another wintry mix with 2" - 3" of snow being covered with a sheet of ice. Raymond is only 30 minutes north of Portland, but weather conditions change dramatically due to the 1000' elevation and few degrees temperature drop as compared to the coastal areas. The quandry is when to shovel this mess. If too soon, then the exposed driveway asphalt is covered with freezing rain. If too late, the precipitation will freeze as tonight is forecasted at 10F again.

The most recent type coin consignment is posted and there are some spectacular pieces in the group; the 1875-S BF-16 PCGS AU55 20c, the 1840-O NGC50 25c, the 1875-S PCGS MS62 50c and the 1878-S PCGS AU50 CAC Trade $1. Please understand that the consignor is a type set specialist therefore each coin is carefully selected for originality and eye appeal. His coins fit well into the GFRC price list and should sell quickly once photographs are loaded.....hopefully on Sunday and weather dependent.

I did manage to visit a local coin shop yesterday and bought a decent selection of circulated morgans. These are on the price list.

For customers who joined the PCGS economy submission at Baltimore show, the results are still 1-2 weeks away. Though PCGS accepted the consignment on October 30, they recorded the system receipt as being November 6. From experience, PCGS typically turn around time is 6 calendar weeks from system receipt.

There is little inspiration to explore other topics this morning and I have a large backlog of tasks needing attention. So with that, I wish you a quiet weekend and good luck with Christmas shopping. I'll be back here again tomorrow morning, bright and early!

The featured coin of the day is a circulated 1863 half dime that grades VG10. Mintage is a meager 18,000 and could easily fit into a circulated Dansco set. This piece along with the 1867 were purchased from a partial set and do need to find a new home. I'm open to offers.



December 5, 2014

Maine temperature is a rather chilly 10F this morning but the skies will be can't complain.

I spent nearly 3 hours with Maine Collection client "M" yesterday morning and learned much about how this collection was assembled. Our meeting location is at a former investment advisor's office in Lewiston. Yesterday, the conference room schedule was open for an extended meeting so there was time to chat in a relaxed environment. "M's" husband is suffering from multiple illnesses and no one in the family is attached to his coin collection. As "M" explained, they were married in 1955 and her husband was an avid coin collector. He pursued his collection with intense passion until the birth of their first child in the early 1960s. By 1965, his collection was essentially completed and stored in a bank safety deposit box. Her husband was a land and real estate developer and also had a passion for antique cars with his speciality being Studebakers. As "M" related, her husband owned seven Studebakers at one point and actively restored them. His collection included rare sports models with one being sold overseas to a person in Belgium. "M" told storied of traveling to national antique car shows due to her husband's passion and also living in Florida during winters until her husband's illness no longer allowed the southward journey. It was so obvious that "M" loves her husband and is doing all she can to keep him at home with nursing support. She is an elegant woman and incredible wife.

The meeting with "M" was lengthy as she had emptied the home safe and yes, there were many more collections in pristine Wayte Raymond holders. We reviewed Barber 10, 25 and 50c sets with only the 1901-S 25c missing in the three. There was an incredible Lincoln set with high grade 1909-S VBD and 1914-S and her husband's pride and AU 1955 double die obverse that he retrieved from circulation. The Lincoln set contained gem red BU pieces from mid 1930's onward. There was a complete Buffalo nickel set, and an incredible partial Jefferson nickel set (in Wayte Raymond) where every toned piece appeared to be superb Gem BU. Finally, there were the random envelopes in a large cigar box.....a group of 30 civil war tokens, a group of Mexican or Spanish reales, some gold $2.5s and more items.

I purchased "M's" Flying Eagle/Indian set, provided an initial estimate for the 1/2 cent and 1 cent copper collections with agreement that we will continue the evaluation/purchase process in April upon my return from Florida.

The small consignment mentioned during Wednesday's blog arrived yesterday and will be photographed today and online by the weekend. I do need to apologize for this week's shipment delay as a trip to the post office did not happen on Wednesday (snow) and Thursday due to the long visit with "M".

Today's featured coin is an 1872-CC Liberty Seated quarter graded PCGS EF Details Code 92 (cleaning). This is a very important offering and I expect this piece to arrive either this weekend or in Monday for my personal inspection and discussion with customers. I believe the asking price is quite fair and few examples at this grade level come to market. We must remember that some Carson City coinage was not properly alloyed with copper to improve protection against environmental conditions. From the images, this piece appears to have reverse porosity and this will be confirmed once the coin arrives.



December 4, 2014

Would like to open this blog with a sincere thank you to GFRC customers and friends for stopping by and reading my daily thoughts and comments. Yesterday was spent with Cohen and Noyes variety reference works while evaluating the half cents and large cents within Maine Collection. After years of studying silver coinage surfaces, evaluating copper coins brings an entirely new dimension to this hobbyist and dealer. So far, there is one stand out piece, an 1795 half cent with dramatic doubled struck obverse; the double strike on Liberty's face has a significant offset right.

I spent much time on the phone with GRFC customers and consignors yesterday. The feedback about coin inventory is positive and there were requests that I consider expanding offerings into gold and European silver crowns. As much as I am flattered with these thoughts, the reality of significant product line expansion means more pre study efforts to properly learn each series, strike characteristics and grading standards. I am not the type of person to simply read the grade on TPG label as the primary basis for setting retail price. Those of you that know me understand the high standards I set for business conduct and those standards apply to numismatic sales as well. I told one consignor....if I could live a second life, the European silver crowns would be a serious area of interest. Who knows in 2015 if I may start to dabble with a small European silver price list just for fun and the vaste learning opportunities.

Plans for today include packing and shipping recent orders and purchasing the Flying Eagle/Indian Cent set out of the Maine Collection. There is a need to add several more new Seated dime varieties to the web-book before those are shipped to new owners. Finally, there are still more Newps to be loaded onto the price list.

Today's featured coin is an 1873 Carson City Trade dollar graded NGC AU55. Mintage is a meager 124,500 and the piece is perfectly original with uniform medium gray patina. The images are not the best with some lighter areas from 8:00-11:00 that are TPG holder reflections. The retail price is consistent with or slightly lower than HA results on CoinFacts. This piece has been off the market for years without a CAC attempt and was consigned at the October Baltimore show. Please give this wonderful dollar some consideration for potential inclusion in your collection. Lay-a-way terms are available with full payment due no later than early March 2015.



December 3, 2014

Customer response to the advanced Liberty Seated quarter consignment has been beyond expectations. All of the consignment pieces are online as of Monday evening with the 1853 No Arrows NGC AU55 CAC now sold. An important GFRC customer, who is building an advanced set, determined that he should capitalize on the 1853 No Arrow opportunity given the date's rarity in higher grades. Attention now shifts to the 1871-S PCGS AU 58 offering......

I'm pleased to announce that another GFRC customer, and good friend, decided it was time to convert some coins to cash and redefine certain collecting goals. His consignment is now in transit and should arrive by the weekend. This individual has an outstanding eye for original and eye appealing type coins. Included in the consignment are;

Double Dime: 1875-S BF-16 PCGS AU55, luster with just a hint of golden toning
Seated Quarter: 1840-O No Drapery 25c Briggs 1A NGC AU50 nice color with proof like fields
Seated Half Dollar: 1875-S 50c WB-18 PCGS MS-62
Trade Dollars:1877 PCGS AU50, 1878-S PCGS AU50 CAC original gray patina with proof like fields

Other GFRC news includes a scheduled meeting later this week to purchase Maine Collection's Flying Eagle/Indian Cent set. Once acquired, my plan is to break up the Two Cent, Liberty Nickel and Indian Cent sets and send all key dates for grading and having in hand prior to FUN show. The Maine Collection sets will facilitate product line expansions beyond current Bust and Seated offerings. Remaining in the Maine Collection are copper 1/2c and 1c sets to be evaluated and purchased.

The featured coin of the day is the recently consigned 1871-S Briggs 1-A PCGS AU58 Seated quarter. PCGS population report indicates (1) in AU50 and (3) in AU58 so few AU pieces are even in existence. This is an opportunity for an astute collector to secure a Seated quarter rarity on a fixed price list basis.



December 2, 2014

Monday was a busy day as awareness for the magnitude of the new Seated quarter consignment sets in with advanced collectors. This consignment brings important high grade pieces to market that would be traditionally seen at a major auction. Instead GFRC customers have an opportunity to source rare pieces via fixed price list. Already the 1839 Briggs 1-A PCGS AU53 and 1864 Briggs 1-A NGC AU55 CAC quarters are on hold and there are more email inquiries from yesterday evening to respond to this morning. Following is the entire consignment;

1839 PCGS AU53 (Hold), 1842-O Sm Date PCGS AU Details, 1852 Briggs 2-B PCGS MS Details, 1853/53 NA NGC AU 55 CAC, 1855-S Briggs 1-C ANACS AU58 OWH, 1856-O Briggs 3-C ANACS AU58 OWH, 1856-S/s PCGS EF Details, 1858-S Briggs 2-B PCGS AU53, 1864 NCGS AU55 CAC (Hold), 1871-S PCGS AU58, 1872-CC PCGS EF Details, 1873 NA Open 3 PCGS AU55, PCGS EF45 and PCGS AU Details, 1891-O PCGS EF Details.

In addition to handling the above, the December E-Gobrecht issue is now loaded on and websites. If you've not taken the time to read through this issue, then you are missing much timely news concerning new LSCC programs.

Also, LSCC/JRCS member John Okerson approached me yesterday with an Excel format database for pre 1892 silver coinage with cuds. This database took considerable time to research and prepare. John and I will be discussing potential strategies for transforming this database into an online reference that all numismatists can utilize. The possibilities are considerable.

Finally, I spent time with Coin World's Jaime Allen yesterday afternoon to refine the GFRC advertising campaign and to secure a Gold Membership package for the upcoming Coin World dealer directory. I've been struggling with settling down on a GFRC logo and with the help of Coin World's design staff, the following becomes standard logo for subsequent advertising. My 1838-O PCGS MS64 CAC seated dime continues to be featured within the logo.


Today's featured coin is from the new Seated quarter consignment. This is one of three 1873 NA Open 3 pieces in the consignment and a important opportunity to acquire a choice example of this underrated date.



December 1, 2014

Welcome to December 2014 and Cyber Monday! Only four weeks before the Florida migration.....

Yesterday evening, Bill Bugert, Liberty Seated Collectors Club Editor, published the December E-Gobrecht issue with the club's new initiatives being well supported by multiple authors. Bill continues to upgrade the E-Gobrecht formats and balances featured articles with club news and social activity reporting. The LSCC is so fortunate to have Bill as our Editor along with the growing number of authors and active club members.

I received four correct responese for yesterday's world travels image....where in the world was Gerry this time? The local was Harbin, China and the event was the 2003 Harbin International Ice and Snow Sculpture Festival. Harbin is located on the SongHua River which flows from Jilin City, China to Russia. Each year, Harbin residents saw ice blocks from the river and build an city made exclusively of ice block and lights. Across the road from the ice city (probably the size of Disney World's Magic Kingdom in Orlando) is a second park with multi story ice sculptures on a scale that is unbelieveable unless seen in person. This link has outstanding images from the 2014 Festival. The challenge while visiting Harbin are the evening lows of -35C to -40C. Since being born and raised in Maine, one would expect that I might have a strong tolerance for these temperatures but experiencing Siberia temperatures was painful unless well prepared with thick parkas and multi layered clothing. Harbin City is a famous railroad center with historical ties to Russia. After the Communist Revolution, the remains of the Czar's family and supporters fled to Harbin and established a Russian enclave.

Back to coins....I spent the better part of yesteday loading more price list offerings including selections from an advanced Seated quarter consignment. Inquires on several of these pieces were strong and will be working with consignor to finalize retail prices today.

Today's featured coin is a wonderful 1840 With Drapery quarter acquired at the Westford, MA show. Advanced collectors of the series well recognize that this date is underrated and difficult to locate in any grade. So when I was approached to buy this piece, it took little time to render a decision. If curious, check eBay as there are three low grade pieces offered with high asking prices. This selection appears to be a bargain. Of course, someone will ask if it will grade at TPG.....if not sold by FUN, it will be submitted and if it grades (it has a decent chance), the asking price will be much higher.

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