Top-quality 3-cent silver pieces bring big money at Legend Regency XI auction in Las Vegas

Odd denomination sometimes called a trime
By , Coin World
Published : 02/25/15
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A collection of silver 3-cent pieces was a highlight of Legend Rare Coin Auctions’ Regency Auction XI, held Feb. 19 in Las Vegas, Nev. 

The select auction of 352 lots was held in conjunction with the Professional Coin Grading Service Members Only Show at The Venetian hotel. Legend called the Colley Collection of Mint State silver 3-cent pieces the second finest set ever assembled. 

The denomination is often called a “trime” because of its similar diameter to a dime and a play on the dime’s name. A contemporary dime had a diameter of 17.9 millimeters and a weight of 2.49 grams, compared with the “trime,” which weighed just 0.75 gram but had a diameter of 14 millimeters. 

Leading the collection was an 1872 silver 3-cent coin grading MS-66+ by PCGS with a green CAC sticker. 

Legend’s description states that no PCGS MS-66 1872 silver 3-cent coins have ever sold at auction, but that the consignor paid $22,500 for the coin. It adds, “Virtually perfect surfaces are better than what you’ll see on most common dates.” Against an estimate of $20,000 to $25,000, it sold for $27,025. 

The 1872 coin is a rare date in the series with just 1,000 pieces struck. It is also the last year circulation-strike examples of the denomination were struck. The series concluded in 1873 with the production of 600 Proof examples.

Other strong prices were seen for an 1868 3-cent silver piece in MS-65 that sold for $17,625. It is one of just two in this grade at PCGS, with four submissions at the MS-66 level. 

One of these PCGS MS-66 examples brought $16,450 at Stack’s Bowers Oct. 30, 2014, Baltimore Expo auction. That example differed from Legend’s offering in that it lacked the robust navy blue, purple, gold and sea green toning seen on Legend’s coin, which had also formerly been in the number one ranked Law/Simpson PCGS Registry Set. 

Other pricey trimes included an 1870 silver 3-cent piece in PCGS MS-66 CAC that sold for $9,693.75 and an 1864 example graded PCGS MS-68 with a green CAC sticker that brought $22,912.50. The latter piece was described as, “a killer Civil War era masterpiece in an obsolete denomination.” 

Read more about Legend's Feb. 19 Regency Auction XI:

Proof 67+ Deep Cameo 1893 Morgan silver dollar brings $70,500 at Legend Rare Coin Auctions’ Feb. 19 sale

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