World Coins

Goldberg offering of Peh Collection sale tops $8.7 million

Many lots in the Goldberg sale of the first installment of the Peh Collection exceeded estimates. This four-piece silver Proof set from Burma was expected to sell for $7,500 but hammered at $90,000.

Images courtesy of Ira and Larry Goldberg Auctioneers.

The stage was set at the Fairmont Century Plaza, a luxury hotel in the Century City neighborhood of Los Angeles, but interest poured in from around the world when the Jan. 30 sale began for the Peh Collection.

Featuring high quality rarities, the sale by Ira and Larry Goldberg Auctioneers offered only 210 lots but lasted for nearly 8 hours, with interested bidders on the internet and phones. 

“It was the most impressive sale we’ve ever conducted,” said Larry Goldberg by phone on Feb. 5. “With over 60 years in business, I would say it was one of our best ever, and there’s more to come in June.”

Only two of the lots offered failed to sell, while many of the lots exceeded their pre-sale estimates, some by multiples. “We didn’t anticipate it being this big,” admitted Goldberg. The pre-sale total estimate was just over $3 million dollars. The final total exceeded $8.7 million.

In a sale of this magnitude, it is hard to single out best-performing lots, so only a few highlights are being reviewed here. Interested parties can find the prices realized at the company’s website, auctions.goldbergcoins.com.

A 1645 Netherlands East Indies silver crown brought a hammer price of $200,000 (realizing $240,000 with the 20% buyer’s premium). The coin is the only one of six known to be encased in a Professional Coin Grading Service holder, where it was graded About Uncirculated Detail (Tooled). The coin was illustrated in the Goldbergs’ book Money of the World.

It previously sold in 2008 at the hammer price of $115,000, then-graded Extremely Fine 45 in a Numismatic Guaranty Corp. holder, in the Millennia Collection.

Another standout was an 1839 silver pattern crown from Great Britain graded Proof 63 by PCGS. The second recorded example, it eclipsed its $50,000 pre-sale estimate to realize $408,000 including the buyer’s fee. There were 21 bids submitted for the coin, which appeared late in the auction. The pattern features a young Queen Victoria sans crown and was sold by Baldwin’s in 2005.

Another pattern from Great Britain that brought a lot of attention from collectors was an 1820 gold £5 coin featuring King George III, right-facing and laurel-crowned, on the obverse. Graded PCGS Proof 63 Deep Cameo, this Laureate Head example is one of seven in the PCGS population report. The reverse by Benedetto Pistrucci features Saint George on horseback vanquishing evil incarnate depicted as a dragon. The edge is lettered. The coin achieved one of the sale’s highest prices, $480,000 with the buyer’s fee.

The coins consigned by the Peh family were sent to grading services prior to the sale to ensure accurate representation of the works. If grades were changed from previous encapsulations, this was noted in the coin description for the lot.

Ira and Larry Goldberg Auctioneers will be offering more rarities from the Peh Collection in June. The summer sale will also include graded notes from around the world.

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