The Heritage Platinum Night auction on April 28 was led by gold
coins, with classic U.S. Proof gold coins achieving the six highest
prices in the sale. The auction was held in conjunction with the
Central States Numismatic Society convention, held in Rosemont, Ill.,
April 27 to 30.
The second highest price was $230,000 for an 1860 Coronet $20
double eagle graded Proof 64 cameo by Numismatic Guaranty Corp. The
last time it crossed the auction block was in 2004, when it was housed
in a Professional Coin Grading Service Proof 63 cameo holder and
realized $94,875. That coin, along with many others in the Heritage
auction, were from the Slotkin Family Trust Collection, a collection
of nearly 300 Proof classic U.S. coins, of which more than 90 percent
were graded by NGC.
Before the auction, some questioned if the coin market could
absorb this many costly, very high grade Proof coins, most with cameo
and deep cameo designations, many of which had been purchased by the
consignor in the past five years.
More than 100 separate coins from the Slotkin Collection sold for
more than $10,000, and more than 5,500 bidders participated in the
auction, showing the depth of the current coin market even at price
levels beyond the pocketbook of the average collector.
Not all coins in the auction, however, brought prices that were
higher than realized in the most recent previous appearance. An 1896
Barber quarter dollar, graded Proof 69H ultra cameo by NGC, realized
$29,900, less than the $34,500 that the consignor purchased it for in
On the CSNS bourse floor, dealers lamented what they saw as a lack
of opportunities to buy coins to add to their inventories.
Fresh material is a problem in the current market.
One significant gold dealer wrote about the show, in a comment
attached to his new purchases, that it “was characterized by an
extreme lack of fresh material and it took four solid days of
‘pounding the pavement’ and using all of our contacts to find
interesting coins for sale.”
His comments were echoed by several other dealers, although the
sale of a substantial multimillion dollar U.S. coin type set at the
show provided some fresh material that was quickly absorbed into the
market, and serves as a reminder that all coins don’t necessarily pass
through auctions. ■