Stack’s Sells Eliasberg & Krause Collections in Baltimore
Last week Stack’s conducted its sale of The Eliasberg and Krause Collections in Baltimore, Maryland, where over $4 million worth of coins, medals, tokens, and paper money changed hands. Alongside these two landmark collections, Stack’s proudly featured items from the Peter Scherff Collection of Colonial Coins, The Alan Bleviss Collection of Civil War Tokens Part IV, and Selections from the Collection of Jerry Byrne, Sr.
Session One began with U.S. tokens and medals, and featured a large selection of Civil War tokens from Part IV of the Alan Bleviss Collection. Nearly 300 lots of Ohio tokens were offered, and highlights included a rare Brattin token, a Rarity-10 Cleveland issue graded MS-63 by NGC that sold for $12,075. Other important lots included a Walker’s Ale Depot Rarity-9 copper token from Urbana that brought $12,650. U.S. medals showcased many important rarities, like a Large Size Franklin Pierce Indian Peace Medal graded Choice Very Fine that sold for $10,350.
The extremely rare silver Oliver H. Perry Battle of Lake Erie Medal is one of just three known pieces and is one of the rarest medals from the War of 1812 series. This piece sold for $12,650. Military related items boasted an impressive bronze 1864 U.S. Colored Troops Campaign Before Richmond Medal, a beautiful Uncirculated medal that brought $14,950.
Following the tokens and medals, we offered various appraisals, inventories and reference books from the Eliasberg Collection, and some of these items brought truly special figures. The first item to cross the block was the Eliasberg Collection Green’s Checklist, an amazing reference and an irreplaceable memento that sold for an incredible $51,750. The second piece was John Zug’s appraisal of the John H. Clapp collection, which was purchased by Louis Eliasberg in its entirety in 1942. This wonderful piece of numismatic history sold for $57,500. The third amazing item offered here was an inventory of the collection dated March 9, 1951, an impressive piece that included comments by Walter Breen, that sold for $37,375.
U.S. coinage comprised the second half of Session One, and included half cents through quarters, silver and gold commemoratives, sets and errors. Notable events here included a desirable high grade 1794 C-2a half cent graded AU-55 (PCGS) that sold for $13,800 and a pleasing 1793 Liberty Cap large cent, an S-13 variety in Fine-15 that brought $23,000. Lincoln cents featured an amazing 141-piece set of 1909 through 1958 issues, lacking only the 1922 No D variety to be complete. Grades ranged from AU-50 to MS-65, and the final price was a strong $18,400.
The popular 1792 half dime made an appearance in this sale, a coin exhibiting the Sharpness of Very Fine that was probably lightly cleaned decades ago. This coin topped out at $46,000. U.S. dimes featured a wonderfully toned 1796 JR-4 Draped Bust, Small Eagle in MS-65 (NGC), a scarcer die pairing that went for $74,750. Three lots later was a pleasing 1797 JR-2 13 Stars dime, a sharp and lustrous example of this elusive issue graded AU-55 by PCGS that sold for $27,600.
U.S. quarters led off with an impressive 1796 Draped Bust, Small Eagle type, an attractive and boldly struck example of this single year issue in EF-45 (PCGS) that brought $54,625. Capped Bust issues featured a lovely 1820 B-4 Small 0 example in MS-64 (PCGS), one of the five finest graded by PCGS. This nicely toned piece garnered $17,825.
Session Two covered half dollars through double eagles, with patterns, territorials, and fractional gold interspersed between the silver and gold. Of particular note was the Earle-Eliasberg 1829 O-111 Specimen Striking half dollar, believed to be unique as a specimen of this die pairing. Graded SP-63 by NGC, this stunning rarity sold for $32,200. A few lots later appeared a gorgeous 1837 Reeded Edge half dollar, an exceptional MS-66 (PCGS) coin boasting richly lustrous and remarkable clean surfaces. This beauty generated $28,750. U.S. dollars offered a nice selection of each type, with a Gem 1928-S Peace dollar stealing the show. This coin was graded MS-65 by PCGS, with only one finer piece seen by that service, and sold for a hefty $25,300.
U.S. pattern coins, territorial issues, and a large selection of California fractional gold, mostly from the Eliasberg Collection, segued into federal gold coinage. Among the California fractional gold pieces was a choice Uncirculated “Humbert Eagle” Octagonal $1. This BG-501, Rarity-5- example was graded MS-63 by PCGS and boasted not only the Eliasberg pedigree but the Clapp one as well. This lovely jewel was avidly sought and commanded a final price of $11,500.
Gold dollars featured an historic 1861-D example, a high grade and attractive coin struck by the Confederacy during the early days of the Civil War. Housed in a Genuine (PCGS) holder due to a few minor scrapes, this coin is bright, lustrous, and generally well struck. This tiny piece of history went to a new home after a final price of $18,400. U.S. quarter eagles boasted a rare 1806/5, an incredible example from a surviving population estimated at just 25 to 35 pieces. This piece, also housed in a Genuine (PCGS) holder due to a few minor scratches, exhibited the overall sharpness of a Mint State coin. This important rarity sold for $20,700.
Half eagles commenced with a nice 1795 Small Eagle, a coin with the Sharpness of AU that exhibits a few light scratches though it is sharply struck with nice definition and pleasing surfaces. Bidders recognized its desirability, and this Eliasberg coin sold for $26,450. Later types boasted an impressive Matte Proof 1911 example in Proof-64 (PCGS), one of just 139 struck, that brought $18,400. U.S. eagles provided a choice 1872-CC from the Eliasberg Collection, an EF-45 (PCGS) that reached $20,700.
Double eagles featured a number of highlights from both types. Coronet examples included a rare, high grade 1853-O example in AU-55 (PCGS) that brought $17,250 as well as a key date 1885-CC in MS-61 (PCGS) that brought $25,300. Saint-Gaudens types were epitomized by late date issues like a MS-64 (NGC) 1924-S that brought $19,550 and a MS-62 (PCGS) 1926-D that brought $20,700. The final lot of the session was a beautiful example of the rare 1929 issue, a MS-65 (PCGS) coin that brought in $80,500.
Session Three encompassed over 600 lots of Colonial and Early American coins and offered many wonderful items from the Peter Scherff Collection, a vast cabinet that spanned virtually all areas of colonial coinage, as well as many important coins from the Eliasberg Collection. Virginia coinage led off with a gorgeous 1773 Proof “penny,” a beautiful, boldly struck Proof coin that is one of the most famous rarities of the early American series. This coin, from the Eliasberg Collection, is certified as Proof-65 BN by PCGS, and sold for $28,750.
Higley coppers came to the fore in this sale, with an incredible five different varieties offered, courtesy of the Peter Scherff Collection. The first was a VG-8 (PCGS) example of the very rare VALVE OF THREE PENCE variety, one of just two known from these dies, of which this is the only collectible piece (the other being firmly ensconced in the Eric Newman Collection). This important piece raked in $47,725. The second Higley was another variety of which there are just two known pieces, a THE VALVE OF THREE PENCE/I AM GOOD COPPER graded AG-3 (PCGS) that hailed from the Parmelee and Norweb collections and sold for $40,250. The remaining three Higley coppers up for sale here included an ex Robison Three Hammers example in AG-3 (PCGS) that maxed out at $27,600 and two Broad Axe examples, the first in VG-10 (PCGS) that brought $43,125 and the second in Good-6 (PCGS), a formerly unique piece that sold for $40,250.
Maryland colonial issues included the 1790 Standish Barry threepence from the Oechsner Collection graded Fine-15 by PCGS, a classic rarity whose survivors number somewhere around 20 pieces. This pleasing example sold for $37,375. New Jersey coppers featured the Frontenac Maris 70-x, a Good-6 specimen struck over a DBL Connecticut that was once part of the Hall, Brand, Ryder, and Boyd Collections that sold for $14,950. Immediately following that lot was a spectacular Maris 71-y overstruck on a 1781 counterfeit Irish halfpenny. A rare variety, this Fine-15 example climbed to $16,100. Rounding out the selection of New Jersey coppers was the extremely rare Maris 83-ii, a Rarity-7 variety that was missing from the Ford-Boyd holdings. This AG-3 example is one of just nine known pieces, and sold for a very strong $17,250.
Over 250 Connecticut coppers were offered here, and the spread was replete with Rarity-5 examples and also included nearly 20 Rarity-7 or Rarity-8 examples. Offered as Lot 2303 was a rare Miller 4.1-C example, a Rarity-8 Good-4 coin that is one of just two known to exist, and was once part of the Taylor Collection. This amazing piece climbed to $27,600. The Miller 12.2-C offered as Lot 2477 was another significant highlight. This coin was overstruck on a Nova Constellatio copper and is one of the most beautiful and well-preserved Connecticut coppers we have ever seen. In MS-63 BN (PCGS), this stunning coin tops the census with none finer and soared to a final price of $25,300. Other important realizations included a Miller 16.2-NN.2 example, a Rarity-8 variety not found in either Perkins or Ford. Graded Fine-12 with some bends and dents, the elusive nature of the variety trumped condition when the coin sold for $21,850.
Colonial New York issues boasted a rare and desirable 1787 New York Excelsior copper. Housed in a Genuine (PCGS) holder and exhibiting the sharpness of VF, this coin hailed from our famed offering of the Roper Collection. This great early American rarity-an unofficial New York issue thought to be the product of a collaborative effort by Ephraim Brasher and John Bailey to demonstrate what they could offer to the state-sold for $17,250. Massachusetts coinage offered a beautiful Ryder 1-B half cent from the Eliasberg Collection graded MS-64 BN (PCGS) that sold for $20,700, nearly four times the pre-auction estimate!
Other important early American issues included a 1796 Myddelton token in copper, an extremely rare token from an estimated surviving population of just eight to ten specimens. This Proof-64 BN (PCGS) token also claimed a great pedigree as a part of the Eliasberg Collection, and the very healthy realized price of $31,050 speaks to the combination of rarity, condition, and provenance.
Session Four was composed of United States Paper Currency, featuring Part II of the Chester L. Krause Collection of Wisconsin Obsolete Banknotes, Private Scrip, Territorial Issues, and Related Fiscal Paper. A modest selection of Continental and Colonial Currency opened the session, and a tiny section of non-Krause obsolete currency featured a superb quartet of New Jersey copper printing plates. The first was a unique Maverick $3-$3-$3-$3 State Bank of New Jersey plate that sold for $7,475 and the second was a recut Maverick plate that is a slight variant on the former, which brought $6,325. The third plate was a Harrison engraved State Bank of New Jersey plate for $5-$5-$5-$5 notes that sold for $7,475, and the fourth was a plate for a $500 note on the State Bank of Elizabeth that sold for $3,450. A copper face plate for a four-subject sheet on the Bank of Mount Pleasant in Ohio concluded our offering of printing plates with a final price of $3,738.
Part II of the Chester L. Krause Collection featured nearly 275 lots of incredible rarities, and included in this offering was the first portion of Chet’s amazing scrip note collection. The exceedingly rare Wisconsin Bank of Madison Two Dollars Archival Specimen, an exceptional color note plated in both the Haxby and Krause references, exceeded expectations when it sold for $5,175. The Juneau Bank, Milwaukee One Dollar Archival Specimen was another stunning highlight. This Extremely Fine note was the last of four example of this title in this collection, and sold for $6,900.
Multiples boasted an imposing St. Louis Bank $5-$10-$20 sheet that is most likely unique. With beautiful color and vignettes, this lovely Proof sheet racked up $6,325. Near the end of this important offering was the Waupun Bank Two Dollars Archival Specimen bearing the RWHE Santa Claus and sleigh on rooftop vignette. This Extremely Fine, High Rarity-7 note sold for $10,350.
Federal currency finished out Session Four of this amazing sale, and notables here included an extremely rare Double Denomination $2/$1 Federal Reserve Bank Note in Net VG-10 (PMG) that sold for $8,050. National Bank Notes included a very rare First National Bank of Cortland, New York $5 Red Seal, serial number 1. An outstanding Choice VF and one of just five notes known on this title, this note brought a healthy $6,900. Fractional Currency concluded our sale in a strong fashion, with an original partial pack of Fifth Issue 10¢ from the Eliasberg Collection selling for $5,348 and a framed Fractional Currency Shield, also from the Eliasberg Collection, closing the sale with a realized price of $4,888.
For further information on participating in or consigning to an upcoming Stack’s auction, contact Stack’s at 123 West 57th Street, NY, NY 10019 or at Box 1804, Wolfeboro, NH, 03894. By phone please use 800-566-2580. Full sales results from The Eliasberg and Krause Collections, as well as full photos and text from previous sales, are available online at our website.