Volume 2, Issue 8, August 2006
Whole Number 17
This is an electronic publication of the Liberty Seated Collectors Club (LSCC). The LSCC is a non-profit organization dedicated to the attributions of the Liberty Seated Coin series. The LSCC provides the information contained in this email newsletter from various sources free of charge as a general service to the membership and others with this numismatic interest. You do not have to be a LSCC member to benefit from this newsletter; subscription to the E-Gobrecht is available to anyone. All disclaimers are in effect as the completeness and/or accuracy of the information contained herein cannot be completely verified. Contact information is included near the end of this newsletter.
Miscellaneous Notes from the Editor
The latest issue of the Gobrecht Journal, postal mailed last week, contains a ballot for new LSCC officers. Please submit your votes by August 11th to LSCC President John McCloskey per the directions on the ballot.
The LSCC will have its annual meeting at the Denver ANA Convention on August 17th at 9 AM in room 712 of the Convention Center. Many agenda items are already formulated but new items are always welcomed. Anyone and everyone are invited. Please try to attend.
Acknowledgements. Many thanks to Jim Gray, Len Augsburger, Darrell Low, and the subscribers who corresponded with me.
Relevant Trivia. Did you know that Christian Gobrecht served as a Private with the 1st Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers during the War of 1812? Source: The Charles Gobrecht Darrach (Christian Gobrecht’s grandson) paper file on Christian Gobrecht archived in The Historical Society of Pennsylvania.
Availability of past issues. Through the generosity of Gerry Fortin, the previous issues of the E-Gobrecht are readily accessible on his seated dime website at http://www.seateddimevarieties.com/LSCC.htm.
Please consider submitting something for print.
Features in this issue
==> Question of Month.
==> Auction News by Jim Gray.
==> A Review of the latest Gobrecht Journal, Issue #96 by Len Augsburger.
==> LSCC Regional Meeting at the July Baltimore show by Darrell Low.
==> Trade dollar presentation at the Denver 2006 ANA Convention by Bill Cowburn.
==> 1875-S half dollar with a 1 from the rock by Bill Bugert.
==> Recent subscriber correspondence.
==> Question of the month by Jim Gray. This forum hopes to increase collector interaction and correspondence. Your participation is welcomed and encouraged. Send your comments to the E-Gobrecht Editor at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is your opinion of the 100-point grading scale proposed by people with economic ties to third party grading?
Whalen: You answered the question when you posed it. The 100-point grading scale was, in my opinion, proposed by those who have/had financial interest in switching the point scale from 70 to 100. One would, in effect, have to have every currently slabbed coin that one owns resubmitted and regraded. This would be a substantial investment in time and money, not to mention the risk that some coins would not survive the regrade with current value intact. I am definitely against the 100-point system.
Darrell Low: In regards to your June question on the 100-point grading system, I am strongly opposed to it. It is hard enough dealing with 10 grades of Uncirculated, four grades of AU, and two grades of everything else. Going to a 100-point system will perhaps create 15 grades of Uncirculated, more different grades of AU, and everything else that will make it even more confusing for every collector.
Bill Bugert: As an engineer, I learned in school that there is always room to improve everything. I quickly learned in both military and corporate careers that this belief is idealistic. Better is usually the enemy of good enough. Improvements can and do cost time, money, and the improved “item” usually suffers (in performance, capability, meeting requirements, etc.). In this instance, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Broadening a well understood, less than perfect 70 point grading scale to a more ambiguous (and probably more subjective) also less than perfect 100 point system costs the current slab holders and helps no one but those with a financial interest in pursuing the change. Keep it the way it is. The Sheldon 70 point system may have its’ flaws but I believe the 100 point scale could be worse.
Would you pay a premium of 20% or more to buy a problem free Seated coin with beautiful Wayte Raymond style toning?
Darrell Low: For the July question on Wayte Raymond toning, I do not think toning itself would make me pay a 20% premium. But if the coin was original, well struck, had no distracting marks and the Wayte Raymond toning further enhanced already good eye appeal, then I could understand paying a 20% premium.
Bill Bugert: Although I truly love original, nicely toned coins and prefer them to white coins, I would consider a 10% premium reasonable for a Wayte Raymond toned coin but not a 20% premium.
Question of this Month (August)
A dealer has two examples of a coin that you need for your XF/AU Seated set. The first coin is graded AU-58 by a major grading service, but has dark murky toning. Close examination reveals a number of small marks, scratches, etc. under the toning. The second coin is graded XF-45 by the same service and has a good strike, smooth mark free wear, and very attractive natural toning. If the dealer priced the coins exactly the same, which one would you purchase?
By Jim Gray
The Heritage Dallas Sale contained
a large array of desirable Seated coins with quite an unusual number of
A VG-10 1849-O quarter with
natural gray toning garnered $2,070 while an 1855-S quarter in AU-53, but
rather seriously impaired by a long scratch across
Both lots 2256 and 2257 featured a
An 1872-CC half dollar in XF-40, but cleaned, went for $672 and an additional piece of the same date graded XF-45, cleaned, sold for less at $488. An 1873-CC no arrows half in XF-40, cleaned and with scratches, went for $805 while a very nice 1874-CC in XF-45 with attractive toning hammered for $4,025.
An 1836 Gobrecht Dollar from the issue of December 1836 in cleaned VF-30 realized $6,037 and the same coin with AU-55 details, but repaired, sold for $8,912. An 1836 Gobrecht Dollar from the issue of March 1837 was slabbed Proof-55, in spite of old cleaning hairlines, and brought a robust $15,525.
A very nice 1846-O Liberty Seated
dollar in MS-63 which was well struck except for the right hand stars, and with
mellow original toning, sold for $25,300 while an 1850-O dollar, tied for the
finest graded at MS-64, hammered for $37,375, in spite of some toning
irregularity. An 1871-CC dollar, which was catalogued as F-12 and
cleaned, went for $2,185 while an XF-40 cleaned example of the same date
It was slim pickings for Seated
collectors at the Bowers & Merena July Baltimore sale.
==> A Review of the latest Gobrecht Journal, Issue #96 by Len Augsburger. The latest edition of the Gobrecht Journal, issue #96, mailed out the week of July 23rd, contains an excellent mix of variety studies, population analyses, and sales reports. Len Augsburger kicks off the issue with the story of Glenn Hoidale, a half dime collector from the 1950s. Hoidale left behind a wealth of data on half dimes, which richly details his collecting career over a thirty-year period. Two articles on 1876 trade dollars follow. In the first, Bill Cowburn shares the discovery of an 1876 "type 1.5" proof trade dollar, featuring a transitional obverse. This coin has now been exhibited at several shows. Michael Fey tells the story of the sister coin, an uncirculated 1876 trade dollar which also demonstrates the transitional obverse. Exciting discoveries, both!
Dennis Garstang covers the scarce seated dollars of the Civil War era, looking at the population reports and analyzing published prices for these tough cartwheels. Tom DeLorey brings new insight to the extremely rare 1841 no drapery proof dime, using an 1840 splasher recently sold by Heritage to suggest that the 1841 was an evolution in design and not a "one-off" produced by an overpolished die or some other preparation anomaly. (John McCloskey commented on this issue previously, in GJ #80.)
Dick Osburn analyzes results from
the recent Jules Reiver sale, which contained nearly every seated coin plus
several scarce varieties. Varieties were also the theme of articles by
Jack White and half-dime specialist Stephen Crain, examining misplaced digits
on an 1869 dollar and 1841 half-dime, respectively. Bill Bugert
contributed a well-illustrated article showing the die marriages for 1860-S
half dollars. W. David Perkins describes an 1842 dollar with rim cuds,
noting cuds on contemporary dimes as well, as a good example of the synthesis
by comparing multiple seated series. Paul Bradley comments on the current
LSCC survey to identify the ten greatest
John McCloskey prepared a few
notes on the fixed price lists issued by Kamal Ahwash, circa 1980. These
lists, no doubt scarce today, would make a neat "go with" item for
any collection of seated coins (Ahwash's extensive dealing activities were
unknown to this author). John also presented additional analysis on Steve
Crain's half dime census originally published in issue #95 of the Gobrecht
Journal, slicing the census data by mint and reported grade. The
issue is wrapped up with a mystery, a
==> LSCC Regional Meeting at the July Baltimore
show by Darrell Low. The first LSCC regional meeting at the
After member introductions, Leonard Augsburger spoke about a Massachusetts Mechanics Association medal that was attributed to Christian Gobrecht. This particular medal was passed around the room for the enjoyment of the guests.
Conversation then moved towards some of the upcoming articles in the Gobrecht Journal. The summer issue will contain an article on the Seated half dime archives of Glenn Hoidale. Mr. Hoidale’s archives spanned from 1955-1988 and contained about 20,000 half dimes. The fall issue will contain an article on further research being done on 1861-O half dollars by Randy Wiley. The much-anticipated Seated dime survey by Paul Bradley and Gerry Fortin will also appear in this issue.
The next topic of discussion focused on creating a centralized resource of Liberty Seated information on the Internet. This initiative was well received by the attendees. It was also noted that there is an effort to build a contemporary counterfeit Seated coinage reference on Gerry Fortin’s seateddimevarieties.com website. The website also contains a forum for Seated coinage enthusiasts to discuss anything about Seated coinage. The E-Gobrecht was praised by many as an excellent source of breaking information. Lastly, Randy Wiley provided some general information from his research on the 1861-O halves. This generated a lively discussion among the attendees with many interesting questions asked.
The next LSCC regional meeting
will occur at the November 2006
==> Trade dollar presentation at the Denver 2006
ANA Convention by Bill Cowburn. I am scheduled to speak on Thursday,
August 17th at 2:00 in Room 704 and the title of my talk is ‘The
United States Trade Dollar – History and Varieties’. Of course, I would
love to have as many people interested in US Trade Dollars in attendance as
possible. My talk will cover “Why was this coin produced?” The
politics that were involved in its creation, the mining interests of the time,
the Crime of 1873 and how the Trade Dollar came to circulate in the
==> 1875-S half dollar with a 1 from the rock by
Bill Bugert. Here’s another half dollar variety from James Bailey’s
listing of favorite unlisted half dollar varieties (see Volume 2, Issue 5); the
“1875-S 1 from the rock.” Not given a separate WB number nor plated
in The Complete Guide to Liberty Seated Half Dollars, Randy Wiley and I
did mention this variety in the text and included it in WB-101. Shown in
the photo below is a close up of the digit protruding from the rock above the 1
in the date. The 1 from the rock will most likely show even on low graded
coins because it is in a recessed area. The obverse also has heavy clash
lines in the drapery below
1875-S half dollar with a 1 from the rock.
Reverse die cracks for the 1875-S half dollar with a 1 from the rock.
==> Subscriber correspondence.
James Bailey writes in a
postal letter: Bill, I am glad to see you putting pictures out of my
unlisted varieties. That is great. I did not list my favorite
unlisted variety because you and Randy pictured it in your book (Ed.
The Complete Guide to
Recently, I found a coin that took
11 years to locate in the grade and quality that was satisfactory for my
collection. It is the 1876-CC, Medium CC with the 8 in the
denticles. Kent Ingram pictured this coin in the July 1995 issue of the Gobrecht
Journal, issue number 63. That began my search and I just recently
located one. As you know, I do not center in on
Jason Feldman: Bill, There have been some great articles on the value of problem free CC coins (dimes). Perhaps a study of Net grade coins should be done. Most of these coins (even the slabbed ones) have one problem or another. Additionally, (most coin value listings show) the value listings for VF20 and XF40 (coins) and there are many coins that fall between (grading VF-25, 30, and 35). How do we value these?
Jason Feldman: Bill, I have purchased an 1876-CC dime with an unknown reverse. Perhaps some of the readers have a similar coin.
I have yet another 1875-S micro S half dollar to add to your census. I
found a VG in a shop on the way home from the
Advertisements for the
Seated Dime--1880 VG10, five letters in obverse shield legible, "Y" very weak; obverse rim good; rev. rim weak from 8:00 to 11:00, "ONE DIME" very legible---$199, $4 P&I, call Whalen @ 831-475-0934.
Seated Dime--1851 VG8; very good rims; rev. planchet lamination from center between I & M down to rim @ 6:30; $25 + $2P & $2 insurance (if desired); call Whalen @ 831-475-0934.
Seated Dime--1890 VF30; obverse rim fine, reverse rim adequate; $30+$2P & $2 insurance (if desired); call Whalen @ 831-475-0934.
- Issue 96 of the Gobrecht Journal was postal mailed the third week of July.
- LSCC officer ballots due – August 11th to John McCloskey.
- LSCC Annual meeting – 2006 ANA Convention, Denver, Colorado, August 17, 2006, 9 AM, Room 712, Colorado Convention Center.
- Next issue of the Gobrecht Journal – November 2006.
- LSCC Regional meeting -
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Information on the Liberty Seated Collectors Club
The LSCC Pledge. To encourage, promote, and dispense numismatic knowledge of the Liberty Seated coins; to cultivate fraternal relations among its members and all those interested in the science of numismatics.
President: John McCloskey.
Vice-President: Larry Briggs.
Secretary/Treasurer: Mark Sheldon.
LSCC Membership Information. Dues are $15 per year and include three issues of
the Gobrecht Journal, an award winning numismatic publication. To
join the Liberty Seated Collectors Club, for Gobrecht Journal mailing
address changes, or for other membership questions, correspond with the LSCC
Secretary Mark Sheldon at
Articles, comments, or advertisements for publication in the Gobrecht Journal may be addressed to the LSCC President:
John W. McCloskey
President, LSCC, and Editor, Gobrecht Journal
Email address: John.McCloskey@notes.udayton.edu