US Coins

Garrett shares details of 2019 visit to Smithsonian

Before the COVID-19 pandemic began restricting life as we know it, numismatist Jeff Garrett from Mid-American Rare Coin Galleries in Lexington, Kentucky, paid regular visits to the National Numismatic Collection at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., to conduct research.

Garrett shared in the Summer 2021 issue of the Journal of the Barber Coin Collectors’ Society findings from his last visit, late in 2019.

Illustrated in the journal are images of a sketch created and signed in pencil by U.S. Mint chief engraver Charles E. Barber for the obverse of a dollar coin in 1891.

The second piece illustrated is a plaster model by Barber for another dollar obverse. The plaster model was donated to the Smithsonian by one Hiram Edmund Deats, a noted American philatelist, historian and publisher from Flemington, New Jersey.

The Barber-signed sketch shows two allegorical female figures in flowing gowns, separated by a shield. One figure wears a Liberty cap and holds a branch in her left hand while steadying a fasces with her right. The other figure holds a book in her right hand and an unfurled scroll in her left. Crossed olive branches wreath the bottom of the shield, below which flows a ribbon inscribed LIBERTY. Above the shield is a heraldic eagle with olive branches and arrows in its talons.

The plaster depicts a three quarter’s portrait left of a robed Liberty with cap, and holding a starred shield.

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