Auctions news release:
1795 Reeded Edge large cent appears for the first time in 50 years
To be offered at auction, Jan. 7, 2016, at the Tampa, Fla., FUN convention
DALLAS – A 1795 Reeded Edge large cent, NGC VG Details –
The 'House of Davis McKinney' Specimen – will be sold at auction for
the first time in half a century on Jan. 7, 2016. It will be presented as part of the Heritage
Platinum Night offerings held in conjunction with the Florida
United Numismatists (FUN) Convention.
The coin is one of just 10 examples known and is the fifth finest of
all the coins.
“The coin has been known to the large cent community since 1964, but
has never been seen until now,” said Greg Rohan, President of Heritage
Auctions. “It’s a thrill to handle this coin. Heritage is the only
firm that has handled four different Reeded Edge large cents out of
the 10 known. No other house has seen more than two of them.”
A coin dealer's list in 1964 offered a “1795 Sheldon-79 Reeded Edge
cent” for sale – this very coin. That listing prompted large cent
researcher Del Bland to record the coin in his Condition Census for
the variety, although the coin was unseen at that time, and has been
recorded as an "untraced" specimen in every published census
since that time.
The Reeded Edge cent variety was discovered in 1862 when an example
was described with a "Milled Edge." A second example
appeared in an 1890 W. Elliot Woodward catalog, and is now part of the
ANS Collection. The third example, and currently the finest known, was
discovered in 1915 and grades VG8. Six others have been located since
that time, and the current House of Davis McKinney specimen brings the
census to 10 known examples.
The 1795 S-79 Reeded Edge
cent is the rarest of nearly 300 Sheldon-numbered varieties, and it is
rarer than 14 of the Sheldon NC varieties. The obverse and reverse
dies of the famous Reeded Edge large cent were not used for any other
varieties in 1795, simplifying the authentication process. NGC has
certified this piece as VG Details, Corrosion. The present example is
the fourth of 10 different examples that Heritage Auctions has
handled. There have been 11 different firms or individuals who have
handled or owned two different specimens. Just two people, Dr. William
H. Sheldon and Denis W. Loring, have owned three different examples.
Heritage is the only entity to handle four different examples of the
1795 Reeded Edge cent.
The purpose of the edge reeding is
unknown, although past students of the series have speculated that the
reeding served as an anti-counterfeiting device. About half of the
original edge reeding remains visible on this example.