A $5 scrip note issued in 1872 to benefit the Nevada State Insane
Asylum, one of six known silver ingots from Nevada assayer Hiram W.
Theall and canvas bags that once held silver dollars struck at the
Carson City Mint are among nearly 4,000 lots to be offered in April by
Holabird’s Western Prospects Auction is to be staged in multiple
sessions with items from more than 20 collecting categories.
Part 1 of the sale is April 10 and 11. April 10 covers mining, gold
jewelry, and Gold Rush items.
April 11 subjects include Wells Fargo Express, Railroadiana,
numismatics, and tokens.
Part 2 is scheduled for April 17 and 18, with April 17 offering a
camera collection, firearms, Native Americana, saloon and postal
history, fairs and expos, and other memorabilia associated with
Alaska, Arizona and California. April 18 offerings are memorabilia
associated with Colorado through Wyoming.
Part 3 is slated for April 20 and 21, with “Treasures from the Shelves.”
“Most of the material has somewhat low opening bids because
collectors will have to establish the value,” said Fred Holabird.
“There has never been a sale like this before.”
Complete details on the sale can be found online.
Insane Asylum scrip note
According to Holabird, the $5 scrip note was issued by the Virginia
City, Nev., office of Wells, Fargo & Co.
The note’s face entitles the holder to entrance to a gift concert
and to one half of a gift awarded to No. 45037. The back of the note
bears vignettes of overlapping U.S. coins and is denominated $2.50 at
The concert was for the benefit of the Nevada State Insane Asylum.
As printed on the bottom of the note, the concert was scheduled for
Aug. 15, 1872, in Virginia City. However, according to Holabird, the
concert was rescheduled for Feb. 1, 1873.
There were 1,000 gifts awarded totaling $265,000 in gold coins,
including two gifts of $25,000 each.
The assaying business of Hiram W. Theall included Nevada operations
in Virginia City, Austin and Hamilton, along with Marysville, Calif.,
where he was successor to Justh & Hunter. Theall was a native New
Yorker who traveled to the California gold field during the Gold Rush.
The Theall & Co. silver assay ingot is the largest of six known
Theall ingots. It is .899 fine silver, 0.63 fine gold, stamped with a
value of $20.98 in silver and $23.50 in gold. There is no apparent
city designation stamped into the ingot, according to Holabird.
Carson City Mint bags
The three canvas bags that once held silver dollars struck at the Carson City Mint are the first such examples to
be offered by Holabird Americana.
The example illustrated nearby measures 19 inches by 12 inches.
The Carson City Mint executed its first production on Feb. 11, 1870
with the output of 1870-CC Seated Liberty dollars.
The Carson City Miny ceased coining operations in 1893, and the
presses were removed six years later.
The Richardson & Wykoff Good for 5-cents in trade aluminum token
is believed to be unique. It is a two-town token from the mining
region of Custer County, Colo., reflecting the towns of Westcliff and Querida.
Westcliff is also found identified as West Cliff and Westcliffe.
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