Legend Rare Coin Auctions Regency XV

By CoinWeek….
 

The last several Regency Auctions from Legend Rare Coin Auctions have distinguished themselves by offering headliner collections and named sets. Whether it be the Coronet Collection or the David Hall Toned Collection of Morgan dollars, or the PCGS Set Registry All-Time finest set of Barber dimes–or any number of other named specialized sets–the anchors of Legend Rare Coin Auctions’ offerings have always been focused in a particular area.

This time, Legend is shaking it up with Regency XV, a 477-lot offering that kicks off with a live auction on the evening of December 17 at the Venetian Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.

Having paid close attention to each of these auctions since the series began, it’s worth noting that the current selection rates as one of the most diverse and most consistent groupings yet. Consistent in terms of eye appeal and quality; diverse in terms of the breadth of offerings and the range of prices these PQ coins are likely to command.

Regency XV is still a boutique auction at heart, but with more 20th century material finding its way into the offerings–notably Eisenhower dollars, Washington quarters, and Mercury and Roosevelt dimes–it’s becoming apparent that even collectors of “modern” coins have reason to inspect the lot listings.

That’s not to say, however, that Regency XV gives short shrift to conditional and actual rarities from classic U.S. coinage. Legend’s wheelhouse is exotic condition census material with ultra eye appeal. The offerings here continue to uphold that tradition.

The number of PQ coins worthy of highlighting is too great for an article of this kind, but suffice it to say there are a number of standouts in different areas and we wanted to bring at least a few of them to your attention. CoinWeek will follow this pre-sale preview with a post-sale analysis of how our picks fared.

To see the entire auction offering, click here.

Quarters

Arguably the most beautiful quarter design ever struck by the United States, Hermon A. MacNeil’s Standing Liberty quarter doesn’t get the respect it deserves (due, in part, to the fact that the series is quite challenging to complete). Even in choice uncirculated, a complete set of coins by date and mint mark will set you back about US$50,000. And that doesn’t even get you fully struck up examples – pieces the hobby calls “Full Head”. For a “Full Head” choice uncirculated set, you’re talking $120,000, maybe more.

Legend Rare Coin Auctions Regency XV, Lot 202
Courtesy Legend Rare Coin Auctions

For those who want the best of the best, it could take upwards of a million dollars to complete a set of Standing Liberty quarters. An amazing total for the coin series supplanted by the Washington quarter.

Legend’s Lot 202, a 1918-S PCGS MS66+FH, is exactly the type of coin the million-dollar set would include. A fully-struck conditional rarity, this example is the one of three coins graded by PCGS MS66+FH, with one finer. The finer coin is toned, which means, depending on your tastes as a collector, that this might be the best “brilliant” example yet known.

Pre-Sale Estimate: US$37,500 – $42,500 | Current Bid: $39,000

Half Dollars

It’s too hard to pick a favorite half dollar. But two? We can live with that.

For starters, you have to ogle and admire Lot 237, a bull’s-eye-toned 1861 Seated Liberty half in PCGS PR66 CAC. The reported mintage of the issue is 1,000, with 400 or so destroyed due to poor sales. Various estimates of the surviving number of coins have circulated for years, with low estimates in the 100 or fewer range (though PCGS and NGC combined have reported 242 grading events). At the grade level of the present coin, PCGS has graded none finer and five total in PR66. NGC has graded one finer, three in 66 Cameo, and five in 66. One would be hard-pressed to imagine any of these coins would match the eye appeal of Lot 237.

Pre-Sale estimate: US$10,000 – $12,500 | Current bid: $9,750.

Regency XV Lot 255
Courtesy Legend Rare Coin Auctions

Lot 255 is a 1905 Barber Proof half dollar graded PR66+ by PCGS and certified by CAC. There are modern bulk coin submissions that number more than the 727 total mintage of the 1905 Proof half dollar. The present specimen features gunmetal gray toning, which resembles a wintry dusk or a painter’s palette. PCGS has graded 15 pieces finer, though this is the only 66+ yet awarded. Type set collectors wanting high eye appeal coins would do well by adding a piece like this to their holdings.

Pre-Sale estimate: US$3,750 – $4,250 | Current bid: $3,000.

Dollars

The Eisenhower dollar is a coin with a long and complicated production history. Having improved many aspects of the coin’s manufacture, the Mint was put in the position of having to start over in 1975, when Congress mandated a temporary design change to mark the occasion of the nation’s bicentennial.

Regency XV Lot 409
Courtesy Legend Rare Coin Auctions

A few months after the dual-dated dollar coin went into production in 1975, the Mint made a public announcement that a new-and-improved version of the design would be executed.

The Mints at Philadelphia and Denver made a concerted effort to increase the quality of the bicentennial Ike dollars after the switch and the resulting coins showed improvement, with the 1976-D Type 2 coins being the nicest struck up Eisenhower dollars in the entire series, and the 1976-P Type 2 being generally nice (for a modern Philadelphia-struck coin).

Legend Rare Coin Auction’s Lot 409, a 1976-P Type 2 in MS67, is anomalous for the issue. A well-struck and attractive coin, it has strong luster and golden blue and green toning on both faces.

To date, only 10 grading events have been reported by PCGS. Most of these are locked up in top-tier Eisenhower dollar sets and two of the 10 have earned CAC stickers.

This example shows some annealing chatter around the rims, but overall is a pleasing example of the type and suitable for inclusion in such a top-tier set.

Pre-Sale estimate: US$4,500 – $5,000 | Current bid: $3,900.

Here’s another dollar of note…

Regency XV Lot 395
Courtesy Legend Rare Coin Auctions

Lot 395: 1925 $1 PCGS MS67 CAC. – Fully brilliant 1925 Peace dollar with plus luster and virtually flawless surfaces. Current bid exceeds hammer prices of other examples of this issue in the same grade. This is a PQ coin with legs that should pick up another thousand dollars, at least.

Pre-Sale estimate: US$4,000 – $4,500 | Current bid: $4,500.

Gold

1899 Proof half eagles are among the more common issues of the denomination from the 1890s. But common is relative, when you consider that the Mint reports striking a mere 99 pieces. The mintage of 99 provides a certain unintentional symmetry with the date, but truth is the Mint would have sold hundreds of pieces if collectors had demanded it.

Such is one difference between the hobby at the close of the 19th and the opening of the 21st centuries.

Regency XV Lot: 433
Courtesy Legend Rare Coin Auctions

This piece dazzles with bold orange peel surfaces and deep watery mirrors. Devices are blanketed with frost. PCGS reports a population of seven in this date with Deep Cameo frosting. At PR68+, this is the finest example in a PCGS holder regardless of designation.

Something not mentioned in the auction description has to do with the coin’s reverse. The reverse die was misaligned when struck, giving the piece a slightly off-center appearance. This is negligible and does not detract from the coin’s worth but it is immediately noticeable.

Legend Rare Coin Auctions is offering this piece with a $125,000 reserve. At this year’s World’s Fair of Money, a different NGC PF68 UCAM example brought $136,125.

Pre-Sale estimate: US$125,000 – $150,000 | Current bid: $125,000.

Current bids accurate as of time of writing. — CoinWeek

***

With so many online auctions out there, it’s almost a full-time job keeping up with them all. Luckily, CoinWeek does it for you and brings you highlights from the best. That way–even if today isn’t the day you go home with one of these coins–you’ll know quality when you see it.

And one day when you’re ready, the team at Legend Rare Coin Auctions will be there to help.

For more information about Legend Rare Coin Auctions, e-mail Julie Abrams at julie@legendauctions.com, call (845) 430-4378, or visit www.legendauctions.com.

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