An article in Numismatic News discusses the record price for a U.S. copper coin brought at the recent sale of the Dan Holmes collection of early large cents.
The finest known 1795 large cent with a reeded edge sold for a record $1,265,000 Sept. 6. It was a highlight of the Dan Holmes collection of early large cents. This collection was auctioned by Ira and Larry Goldberg in association with Chris McCawley and Bob Grellman at the Beverly Hills Crowne Plaza.
Although many coins in the collection sold for record prices, the spotlight here is on the Holmes 1795 reeded edge, as this is a bewildering price for a copper coin. Greg Hannigan was the successful bidder and was acting on behalf of a collector of large cents by die variety.
This 1795 large cent is of the die variety known as Sheldon-79. Though it is best known for having a reeded edge, it is truly a die variety, not just an edge variety. A particular die pair was used only to produce the coins that are now known as Sheldon-79.
The auction record for a copper coin has been broken a few times over the last five years. On Jan. 5, 2009, in Orlando, the finest known Strawberry Leaf cent was auctioned by Stack's for $862,500. It was NGC graded Fine-12 in 2004, and, after the Jan. 2009 auction, PCGS graded VG-10. It is curious that the finest known Strawberry Leaf cent and the finest known 1795 reeded edge cent are both PCGS graded VG-10.
Of the four known Strawberry Leaf cents, Holmes had two. Hannigan was the top bidder for both. One is PCGS graded Good-4 and it sold for $218,500. The other is of a unique variety. The placement of "ONE CENT" on the reverse is different. It is PCGS graded Fair-2 and it brought $264,500. I expected these two coins to bring more. Strawberry Leaf cents are rarer and much more famous than 1795 reeded edge cents or 1799 cents.
To read the complete article, see:
Copper record: $1,265,000 price achieved by cent
Copper dealer H. Craig Hamling posted a video of the event on YouTube. Watch a how a one-cent coin turns into a million bucks.
To view the auction video, see:
Wayne Homren, Editor
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