How do you price ultra rare coins? Bidders will soon find out Nov. 2-3 when a unique set of 1915-dated Cuban specimen gold pesos come up for sale in Daniel Frank Sedwick’s Treasure Auction 24.
The Cuban gold set is made of all six denominations (1, 2, 4, 5, 10 and 20 pesos) struck in 1915 by the Philadelphia mint on behalf of the then fairly new Republic of Cuba. The coins were all designed by U.S. Mint Chief Engraver Charles Barber. What makes the set rare is the fact that five of the six coins are recognized by NGC as specimen strikes. To date, no other specimens for those denominations are known.
The only outlier to the set is the 5 pesos which, while not having the specimen surfaces the other coins possess, was clearly well struck and specially handled. NGC graded the coin MS 66+, the finest known in both the NGC and PCGS censuses. Other NGC grades for the set range from SP 63 (20 pesos), SP 64 (4 and 10 pesos), SP 66 (1 and 2 pesos). Estimates for the coins range from $2,000 and up for the 1 peso up to $20,000 and up for the 20 pesos. The set will appear in the Treasure Auction as lots 146 to 151. Final bids for the set will hammer down Nov. 2 with bidding available live at auction.sedwickcoins.com.
“Having this set in the auction really speaks to the strong market behind Latin American coins,” said president and company founder Daniel Sedwick. “It’s anyone’s guess as to where the final bids will end up but we’re expecting heavy interest from many experts and collectors.”
Another top lot in the Treasure Auction is lot 5, a specially struck, 1715-dated Mexico gold cob 8 escudos recovered from the 1715 Fleet and graded NGC MS 64. The coin exhibits an even, round planchet and a clear date, shield and crown. Upon manufacture, it was put aboard a ship in the ill-fated 1715 Fleet, which sank off Florida’s east coast on July 31, 1715. This coin was then lost for almost 250 years before being recovered by the Real Eight Company and featured in the Schulman auction of November 1972. In Sedwick’s Treasure Auction, the estimate on the coin is $35,000 to $50,000.
A much earlier Mexican coin expected to draw much attention is lot 664, a Mexico City-minted Charles-Joanna assayer Rincón silver 3 reales, with waves, graded NGC VF 30. The coin was struck around 1536 to 1538, making it one the earliest coins minted in the Americas. In addition to its history and choice grade, it boasts a pedigree to the Isaac Rudman collection. The estimate on this Treasure Auction coin is $35,000 and up.
Other top lots include:
- Lot 206: a Cuzco, Peru, gold 8 escudos, 1837BA, FEDERACION type, graded NGC MS 64+ Prooflike, finest known in both NGC and PCGS censuses, estimated at $35,000 to $50,000.
- Lots 256 and 257: two large silver bars (one 83 pounds, 2.3 troy ounces and the other 81 pounds, 6.56 troy ounces) recovered by Mel Fisher from the Atocha, sunk in 1622 off the Florida Keys, estimated at $30,000 to $45,000 each.
- Lot 20: a Lima, Peru, gold cob 8 escudos dated 1701H, graded PCGS MS62 and recovered from the 1715 Fleet as well as pedigreed to the John Pullin collection, estimated at $20,000 and up.
- Lot 247: a gold “finger” bar weighing 466 grams from the “Golden Fleece” wreck, sunk ca. 1550, estimated at $20,000 and up.
- Lot 568: a Mexico City-minted cob 8 reales fully dated 1715(J) recovered from the pirate ship Whydah, sunk in 1717 off Cape Cod, Massachusetts by salvager Barry Clifford, estimated at $10,000 and up. Barry Clifford, who discovered the ship in 1984, will give a talk on his discovery of the Whydah at the auction site on Nov. 1.
- Lot 638: an 1865-S $20 double eagle recovered from the S. Brother Jonathan, sunk in 1865 off California, and graded PCGS AU58, estimated at $8,000 to $12,000.
- Lot 1557: a Colombia, Banco de Panama, 5 pesos (ca. 1869), graded PMG Choice VF 35, the finest graded in the PMG census, estimated at $2,000 to $3,000.
Bidders can register now for the Treasure Auction at www.auction.sedwickcoins.com. The auction catalog will be available Oct. 9 at www.sedwickcoins.com. For more details, please contact Daniel Frank Sedwick, LLC at firstname.lastname@example.org.