A pattern 1913 Indian Head 5-cent coin without the designer’s initial
and examples of specially prepared 1921 Morgan dollars highlighted Legend Rare
Coin Auctions’ Dec. 18 sale in Las Vegas, Nev.
The 338-lot auction generated total prices realized of $2,929,245.
The prices realized include the 17.5 percent buyer’s fee. The firm
reported that 90.5 percent of the lots in the auction sold.
The sale was held in conjunction with the Professional Coin Grading
Service Members Only Show.
The Indian Head 5-cent pattern realized $98,875. It is graded Proof
63 by Professional Coin Grading Service.
The pattern, made of a nickel composition, features a version of the
Indian Head, Bison on Mound or Type I design as first introduced on
the 1913 circulation coins. Among the most prominent of design
differences between this pattern and the later circulation strikes is
the absence of the F designer’s initial of sculptor James Earle Fraser
on the obverse.
Legend states that according to Mint records, 17 examples were
struck, though not all survive.
The piece is labeled on the PCGS holder as being formerly in the
collection of King Farouk I of Egypt.
USPatterns.com indicates it is likely that the pattern is also the
one formerly owned by Eric P. Newman that was housed in a custom box
together with his five 1913 Liberty Head 5-cent coins and an example
of a 1913 Indian Head, Bison on Plain 5-cent pattern in copper.
1921 Morgan dollars
The Regency X auction included examples of the “Zerbe Proof” 1921
and “Chapman Proof” 1921 Morgan dollars.
The Zerbe piece, graded PCGS Specimen 66 and with a green sticker
from Certified Acceptance Corp., realized $23,500.
The Chapman coin, PCGS Proof 66, CAC, realized $123,375. It is one
of some 15 Proof Morgan dollars that Philadelphia dealer Henry Chapman
had struck to his order.
“This was done clandestinely by or for George T. Morgan, chief
engraver, who had a little ‘rare coin business’ going on the side,”
according to Silver Dollars and Trade Dollars of the United States:
A Complete Encyclopedia, by Q. David Bowers, with Mark
Borckardt. “... They were not officially sold by the Mint, nor were
any Proof sets made that year.”
Supposedly five Chapman Proof strikes were sold by Morgan on June 4,
1921, to Ambrose Swasey, and another 10 to Chapman a week later,
according to a Dec. 8, 1992, letter from numismatic researcher Walter
Breen to Bowers.
There is conflicting research as to whether more than the original
15 Chapman Proofs were struck, since PCGS has received submissions of
at least twice that number.
The Zerbe Proof 1921 Morgan dollars, according to some researchers,
are not true Proofs with deep mirrored finish. Some numismatic
researchers believe the Zerbe coins are prooflike circulation strikes
from hairlined dies, the result of overpolishing.
The strikes were given their moniker after Farran Zerbe, the
numismatic entrepreneur and father of the Peace dollar, who
commissioned these 1921 Morgan dollars. As many as 200 Zerbe Proof
1921 dollars were struck.
Zerbe had anticipated obtaining the first 1921 dollars bearing the
new Peace design, not the resurrected Morgan design.
More from CoinWorld.com:
are they going to open the Boston time capsule and see what's inside?
Trade dollar series remains one of the most heavily counterfeited
among U.S. coins
City Mint coins unwanted when first struck but now they are wildly popular
States Mint to offer 1-ounce silver Proof 2015-W American Eagle
dollar beginning Jan. 2
can someone successfully invest in rare coins?: 7 lessons in collecting
Keep up with all of CoinWorld.com's news and insights by signing
up for our free eNewsletters, liking
us on Facebook, and following us on Twitter. We're also on Instagram!