St. James’s Auctions’ most recent sales, March 5 and 6, marked a departure for the firm from working with A.H. Baldwin and Sons, Ltd.
After working with Baldwin’s to coordinate the auction and administration, the March sales, auction Nos. 25, 26 and 27, were the first for St. James’s on its own.
St. James’s Auctions’ first sale was held Oct. 13, 2004, after Stephen Fenton of Knightsbridge Coins decided that he wanted to expand into numismatic auctions. Since then, Fenton’s St. James’s Auctions has operated as a division of Knightsbridge.
Fenton has cataloged the sales. However, Baldwin’s conducted the catalog mailings and bid processing.
Fenton said that the purchase of Baldwin’s by Stanley Gibbons late in 2013 was not the reason for the change.
“No doubt there will be changes at Baldwin’s, but I have been thinking about going solo for some time and it just seemed logical to make the move now,” Fenton said.
Continuing previous practice, consignors to St. James’s sales will not be charged a commission for single-lot coins, medals and bank notes, providing the selling price is £1,000 or more.
The buyer’s fee for purchasers remains at 20 percent. Every potential bidder who attends the auction in person and registers will receive a free book.
“Some collectors have formed their libraries [by registering at our sales],” Fenton said, with a smile.
The free books have included everything from the annual Standard Catalogue to other volumes with significantly higher retail prices.