US Coins

Prooflike 1896-S Morgan dollar sells for $111,625

Legend Rare Coin Auctions’ Regency Auction XVIII took place Sept. 29 in Las Vegas as part of the Professional Coin Grading Service Member’s Only show and, as typical with the auctioneer, toned coins — especially Morgan dollars — captured the attention of bidders.

In a post-auction press release, Legend said that its strong prices were the result of collectors buying for their collections, as opposed to dealers buying for inventory, noting that 90 percent of the lots went directly to collectors or their agents. 

Here is one of three notable lots we're profiling in this week's Market Analysis: 

The Lot:

1896-S Morgan dollar, MS-66 Prooflike, CAC

The Price:


The Story:

Business strike Morgan dollars with contrast between frosted devices and mirrored fields can be characterized as Prooflike, or if the contrast is particularly dramatic, Deep Mirror Prooflike. Legend offered an 1896-S Morgan dollar graded MS-66 Prooflike with a green CAC sticker from the Coronet Collection that sold for $111,625 against an estimate of $95,000 to $110,000.

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The same dollar was offered last year at Legend’s auction of the Coronet Collection where it sold for $96,937.50, well below the estimate of $125,000 to $140,000.

Morgan dollar history

Morgan dollar: For decades the Morgan dollar has ranked at the top of U.S. coin collectors' favorite coins. Why is the Morgan dollar so popular? There are many reasons, including: large size, attractive designs, numerous varieties, historical significance. How much are Morgan dollars worth?

Legend explained: “The Coronet Collector loves this coin so much he paid full ticket and bought it back out the [2015] sale. He now realizes it does not go with his new current project and wants this love of his life placed with someone who will give it a great home.”

Legend added that it was once graded MS-67 Prooflike by Numismatic Guaranty Corp. and that in absence of any certified Deep Mirror Prooflike examples, this is considered the finest Prooflike example.

Keep reading analysis of Legend’s Regency XVIII auction:

Toned 1881-S Morgan dollar   Beautiful toning likely boosted Morgan dollar price by up to $20,000: Legend’s auctions are well-known for offering some spectacular rainbow toned Morgan silver dollars and the Sept. 29 sale was no exception. 
1795 Flowing Hair half dollar   Why this 1795 Flowing Hair half dollar topped Legend auction at $176,250: “The solitary coin nearest to qualifying as a presentation piece for the year ... Though this piece shows no mirror like finish in fields, it was carefully positioned and given two blows in perfect alignment.”

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