US Coins

All eyes on Chicago for ANA

This 1893-S Morgan dollar, formerly part of the Norweb Collection, will be offered at auction Aug. 12 by Heritage during its Platinum Night sale. It was last offered in 2008, when the coin did not sell.

Images courtesy of

The American Numismatic Association World’s Fair of Money in Rosemont, Ill., Aug. 16 to 20, is shaping up to be a monster show, fueled by record gold prices, major auctions that could bring more than $60 million and a packed floor of dealers ready to spend money to rebuild inventories.

On Aug. 3, gold hit $1,675 an ounce during the day’s trading — an all time record high — and silver reached almost $42 an ounce. While silver still has room to go to reach the nearly $50 an ounce where it traded several months ago, remember that at this time last year it was trading for $18.42 an ounce.

ANA Executive Director Larry Shepherd has predicted that the show, pre-show and auctions — along with a record-setting 220,000 square-foot bourse (more than double last year’s show in Boston) — will be a grand event in the ANA’s history.

Dealers are hopeful that collectors from around the world will make the trip to the Chicago suburb of Rosemont, and that the ANA’s marketing will target a public willing to sell their coins and cash in on their gold, perhaps sparked by the mainstream news attention that the Langbord 1933 Saint-Gaudens gold double eagle trial generated.

Others may have gotten their first taste of a major coin show when the Central States Numismatic Society show rolled into Rosemont at the end of April, and are now coming back for more.

The bulk of the auction action will be at Stack’s Bowers Galleries Rarities Night auction on Aug. 18 and at Heritage Auction’s Platinum Night sale on Aug. 12. The auctions offer too many rarities to individually list, but an interesting market test will come when Heritage offers an 1893-S Morgan dollar graded Mint State 67 by Numismatic Guaranty Corp.

In 1988 when offered as part of the Norweb Collection, it brought $357,500, a record for any Morgan dollar at the time. When offered at auction in 2008, it failed to find a new home.

The dollar had significant toning when it crossed the auction block in 1988, but when offered 20 years later, it was white and brilliant. Many preferred the former look to the latter.

However, the 2011 photographs of the coin are more handsome than the 2008 photos, so perhaps it will set a record again? The 1893-S Morgan dollar had a bid of $170,000 as of Aug. 4. ¦

Community Comments