The fourth part of Heritage’s sale of the Eugene H. Gardner Collection of U.S. Coins is set for auction in New York City on Oct. 28.
The auction focuses on Gardner’s duplicates, upgrades and other pieces that were not part of his core sets, which have brought more than $47 million so far in the first three auctions.
Heritage noted, “At one point, many of these coins were the premier coins in his main set until he found a better example. Of course, a duplicate in the eyes of Gene Gardner is nearly always a showpiece coin for other numismatists.”
The auction features more than 1,000 lots in various denominations from half cents to Trade dollars, along with some classic era commemorative half dollars and gold coins.
Perhaps to distinguish it from the recent auctions of coins from the collection of Eric P. Newman, which were all certified by Numismatic Guaranty Corp. prior to the sale, and the D. Brent Pogue auctions, where the coins were all certified by Professional Coin Grading Service, Heritage noted that the coins offered in the Gardner sales are generally in the same holders they occupied when they were purchased by the collector.
Some impressive coins are among these backups.
Gardner’s “other” 1871-CC Seated Liberty quarter dollar is graded About Uncirculated 55 by PCGS and has a green Certified Acceptance Corp. sticker. The coin is from a low mintage of just 10,890 pieces, making it one of the lowest mintage Seated Liberty quarter dollars.
Examples in all grades today are scarce, with Heritage listing three Mint State examples known. It is rarer than the mintage would indicate, with fewer than 100 examples known today.
Rusty Goe in his book The Mint on Carson Street indicates that many examples were likely melted in 1873 when the silver content for the quarter dollar and some other denominations was reduced slightly. He wrote in his book, “Today’s depleted populations of 1871-CC quarters imply that no more than 90 pieces ever escaped from storage vaults at the Carson Mint.”
The finest known example, graded MS-65 by PCGS, sold for $352,500 at Heritage’s June 2014 Gardner I auction. That example had previously sold for $345,000 at Stack’s Bowers Galleries’ August 2012 American Numismatic Association auction of the Battle Born Collection, which was among the finest collections of Carson City Mint coins ever assembled.