Editor's note: The following post is one in a series on the
Heritage Auctions sale of the Donald G. Partrick Collection at
January's Florida United Numismatists show in Orlando.
The offering of 1792 pattern coins in the Donald G. Partrick Collection being sold at the
Florida United Numismatists show
in Orlando on Jan. 8 is unparalleled and Heritage writes, “Most other collections of 1792s
are defined by what is included — perhaps a silver half disme, a
copper disme, or a low grade cent. The Partrick collection, unlike any
other, is better defined by what is not included.”
Partrick aimed for completion by varieties listed in J. Hewitt
United States Pattern Coins book and just
three pieces are missing, resulting in what Heritage writes is “the
ultimate date set of United States coinage.” The firm adds that with
just two exceptions, every piece in Partrick’s 1792 pattern collection
is the finest available to collectors.
The set starts with a 1792 Silver Center cent, Judd 1, graded
Extremely Fine 45+ by Numismatic Guaranty Corp. with a green Certified Acceptance
Corp. sticker indicating quality within the grade. Partrick
purchased this coin for $9,400 on May 15, 1968, from Bernard Gimelson,
who shared at the time that this example was found by a contractor
from Doylestown, Pa., during a building renovation, nestled in a jar
hidden behind a wall.
The next lot is unique: a 1792 Silver Center cent, Judd 1a, missing
the silver plug in the center. It is graded Mint State 62 red and
brown and the absent center is revealed by way of a hole in the center
of the coin.
Heritage uses this to present an enticing invitation to researchers,
noting, “The first Mint of the United States still has secrets to
reveal, even two hundred years after its founding.”
The unique “Sans Silver” example came to light in 1993 and Heritage
writes that it may have been a trial striking before making the Silver
Center pieces. Partrick purchased it from a March 1995 Stack’s
auction. P. Scott Rubin’s text America’s Copper Coinage, 1783-1857
mentions Thomas Elder’s sale of October 1926, lot 1435, where a piece
is described as, “1792. Pattern for Silver Centre Cent (freak)” and
Heritage writes that this may represent an earlier appearance of this coin.
Another unique example in the Partrick collection is a 1792 silver
disme, Judd 9a, that is unique on a thick silver planchet (or flan).
While coins struck on double-thick planchets (sometimes called
piedforts) are traditionally associated with presentation pieces,
Heritage writes that in this case, “they more likely represent a
coinage experiment within the early Mint.”
This example, graded Extremely Fine Details, Scratches, has a long
and rich ownership history that begins with W. Elliot Woodward’s
October 1867 sale of the Joseph J. Mickley Collection where it sold
for $39. It sold in an Edward Cogan auction in 1875 for $20. Multiple
auction appearances followed with it selling for $33.50 at a 1902
auction and $280 at a 1909 auction. It passed through the collections
of E.H.R. Green, Eric P. Newman and Burdette G. Johnson and was later
offered by Celina Coin Co. in a November 1946 advertisement in The
Numismatist for $750. It fared more modestly when offered at a
1952 Hans Schulman auction where it brought just $300. It was
purchased by the Norweb family from the New Netherlands Coin Co. on
Jan. 31, 1958, and when offered at Bowers and Merena Auction’s
November 1988 auction of that collection, Partrick purchased it for $28,600.
Heritage writes that while the obverse is well-struck, the 1792 date
(which would normally appear under Liberty’s bust) has been effaced
and there are tooling marks in the left obverse field.
Read the rest of the Partrick collection series:
of Donald Partrick Collection anchor Heritage’s FUN auction in January
unique piece leads Donald G. Partrick Collection's Massachusetts coppers
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