The Numismatic Bibliomania Society



The E-Sylum: Volume 15, Number 46, November 4, 2012, Article 22


Harvey Stack forwarded a press release by Greg Cohen about the upcoming Stack’s Bowers auctions of U.S. colonial coinage. Here are some excerpts and images. Many of the names will be familiar to bibliophiles. -Editor

Stack’s Bowers Galleries is very proud to offer to the collecting community this large and diverse selection of Colonial and related Early American coins, the largest offering of the year, featuring 991 lots. This special session will take place on Friday, November 16 at 6pm, and will long be remembered for the wide range of material offered. The John “Jack” Royse, the Legendary Ted L. Craige Collection, The Dan Friedus Collection of Vermont Coppers, The Rob Retz Family Collection of Fugio Coppers, the David J. Wnuck Collection of Contemporary Counterfeit and Imitation Spanish Colonial Coins, and hundreds of coins from other important consignors.

The session begins with the John “Jack” Royse Collection. Formed over the course of many years (roughly 1955 to the virtually the present time) and worked closely with members of the Stack Family, in fact, Harvey and Larry Stack visited him in his home to take possession of the coins. His collection contains many rare interesting pieces, many with famous and important pedigrees.

Lot 6002 obv - NE sixpence Lot 6002 rev - NE sixpence

We begin the sale with a rare Sommer Island Sixpence, Ex Roper Collection in PCGS VF-20. These rare coins are the first issues of a British colony in North America. Directly following is a small selection of seven pieces of Massachusetts silver, starting with the famous and extremely rare New England Sixpence, found in a potato field on Long Island in February 1990. Lot 6003 is a Willow Tree Shilling, ex Richard Picker, in VG details. In keeping with the theme of pedigreed, rare colonials from the Royse Collection, is an AU-50+ (PCGS) Lord Baltimore Shilling, ex John Roper Collection and the Norweb INIMICA TYRANNIS AMERICA Conferderatio Copper, one of perhaps five known.

Lot 6017 obv - Higley copper Lot 6017 rev - Higley copper

Among other rare coppers, are a Broad Axe Higley copper, a Non Vi Virtute Vici and George Clinton Excelsior Copper, both purchased from our (Stack’s) October 1989 sale of the Gilbert Steinberg Collection. A nice selection of Fugio, New Jersey and Connecticut coppers are also offered, including several scarce types and Condition Census pieces. We end the Royse Collection with a selection of rare numismatic volumes from his library.

Following the Royse Collection is Part I of the Legendary Ted L. Craige Collection. Ted Craige is one of the most famous colonial coin collectors of the past fifty years, and a gentleman who passed away too soon in 1971. His extensive collection has since sat untouched in a bank vault, until now. The collection will be sold in several parts, with Part I offered here in November.

Lot 6148 obv - St Patrick Lot 6148 rev - St Patrick

Part one features his collection of St. Patrick Coinage, one of the most extensive and important collections ever offered. Many Condition Census pieces are included. A magnificent silver St. Patrick’s Farthing, graded AU-58 is offered as lot 6148 and is a wonderful example and among the finest known for the issue. Another series that we are pleased to present in this offering of the Craige Collection is his collection of Voce Populi coppers. Ranked among the finest collections ever assembled of this series and includes every variety except for the Nelson-5 and the newly discovered “Nelson-17,” which we had the honor of selling in our 2012 ANA auction.

Lot 6142 obv - Chalmers Sixpence Lot 6142 rev - Chalmers Sixpence

A rare John Chalmers sixpence is offered also offered as part of the Craige Collection. The final extensive offering of items of the Craige Collection is a wide variety of French Colonies 9 Deniers of 1721-22 and Louis D’or from the Le Chameau wreck. We are very pleased to offer the first part of what will be one of the most extensive collections of Colonial coins to cross the auction block. Stay tuned for Part II which will be offered in our January 2013 New York Americana sale.

Anchoring section of 102 Vermont copper lots, is the Dan Freidus Collection. Dan is a well known expert in the colonial field, and his paper on Higley copper die varieties is the standard reference to the series. Dan’s collection (along with the Vermont coppers of other consignors) combine to assemble a powerful selection, featuring most of the 39 Ryder varieties, missing 8 varieties to be complete. Again there are many high grade and Condition Census coins, as well as interesting die states, coins struck over Nova Constellatio and other coppers, and well pedigreed examples.

Lot 6720 obv - Texas Jola Lot 6720 rev - Texas Jola

Lot 6720 is an extremely rare and very attractive (for the type) 1817 Texas Jola. Graded VF-20 by PCGS and housed in a Secure Holder, this coin is a different die marriage from the PCGS Fine-12 example that we proudly sold for $48,875 in our ANA sale. This coin features the name M.BA[…]RA, which matches the name Manuel Barrera, the minter named in the decree of March 29, 1817. This is a wonderful rarity that will find itself in an advanced colonial type set.

Lot 6765 - Continental dollar No colonial coin offering would be complete without a 1776 Continental Dollar, and lot 6765 is an acceptable EF-40 (PCGS) example for a collector grade type set. With similar design elements, the Continental dollar segues into the Rob Retz Collection of Fugio coppers, an advanced study collection that includes 63 coins. Again, as with other series offered in this sale, there are coins with wonderful pedigrees, excessively rare varieties and even a few Newman Plate Coins. Fugio coppers have a great history, and have been studied by numismatists for the better part of a century.

Rounding out the sale is the David J. Wnuck Collection of Contemporary Counterfeit and Imitation Spanish Colonial Coins. David, a long time dealer from Connecticut, who specializes in colonial and early American coinage, elected to collect these fascinating coins over the course of many years. Recently, the reference collection of Michael K. Ringo (offered by Stack’s) provided many opportunities for Dave to fill holes in his collection. This collection is the result of diligent study and patience, and we are proud to have been selected by him to sell his personal collection.

For more information, see:

Wayne Homren, Editor

NBS ( Web

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