US Coins

Market Analysis: Coveted Colonial issues

A unique 1787 New Jersey copper with the initials WM above the obverse plow, graded Fine 15 sold for $264,000 on March 17, leading bidding at Heritage’s most recent offering of the Donald G. Partrick Collection.

All images courtesy of Heritage Auctions.

Heritage’s offering of U.S. Colonial coins from the Donald G. Partrick Collection totaled $4,750,299 on March 17 and 18, led by some extraordinary New Jersey copper issues. At the top was a unique 1787 New Jersey copper issue, with the initials WM — for Walter Mould — boldly impressed in the die between the horse head and the plow. It is cataloged as Maris 62.5-r using the numbering system established by Edward Maris in his 1881 work, A Historical Sketch of the Coins of New Jersey. The variety was unknown to Maris, since it was first widely published only in 1994 when scholar Michael Hodder published it in the May 2 issue of Coin World, calling it “the most spectacular, important discovery in the field of early American and state copper numismatics.”

Heritage writes, “It seems reasonable to suggest that the WM Above Plow type was Mould’s initial design for the New Jersey coppers and, hence, that the Maris 62.5-r is the first variety struck at Morristown.” Graded fine 15 by Numismatic Guaranty Corp., the handsome and important New Jersey copper realized $264,000.

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