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Rosenblum Coins Prepares to Auction “The Philadelphia Collection”

According to the firm, the collection is a true treasure trove featuring nicest, finest, rarest Proof Sets, Tokens, and Paper Money, among Others…

Coined “The Philadelphia Collection,” William M. Rosenblum is preparing to auction one of the best, most impressive and varied collections of major rarities of Israeli, Palestine, Egyptian and WWII materials.

Rosenblum, one of the world’s premiere numismatists, will be presenting “The Philadelphia Collection,” over the course of multiple mail-order auctions, the first scheduled to open in mid-October. Collectors, buyers, historians and curiosity-seekers should visit www.rosenblumcoins.com to be alerted to the sale and sign up for the catalog.

The Philadelphia businessman purchased his first coins from Rosenblum in 1973, and quickly became a true collector and aficionado, who received much joy in assembling his robust portfolio. From early small-change tokens, to the famed 1927 Palestine Double Proof Set, remarkable provisional issues of 1948, among hundreds more, “The Philadelphia Collection” would still be growing, if it were not for his passing.

“This truly is the best overall collection I’ve ever offered via auction in my 44 year career,” Rosenblum said. “Many of the items have passed through my hands before. It’s also quite a sentimental collection. Not only did I help procure many of these pieces for the collector, several were sold to him by my father.”



Palestine highlights include:

  • 1927 Palestine Double Proof Set in original case. Part of the famed Sidney Olson collection sold by NASCA in August 1978, Rosenblum purchased the set for Mr. Philadelphia at the sale and in his personal notes are still true today – “Nice!”.
  • Virtually all of the regular Palestine coins from the collection are mint state including one of the nicest 100 Mil 1931 coins Rosenblum has seen in years. Other pre-State of Israel Holy Land metallic items including a wide array of 19th century tokens, choice Ottoman and British Protectorate coins of Egyptian and a number of Palestine Mandate error coins including accompanied by a letter from the Royal Mint.
  • Palestine Currency Board notes in high ground abound in this collection including high-grade examples of 500 Mils, 1, 5 and 10-Pound notes. Also being offered is a 5 Pound 1927 color trial note in blue not the issued orange, an uncolored 5 Pound Proof and a set of 6 Thomas de La Rue & Company specimens from their archives which include all 6 denominations with 000000 serial numbers, 4 of the notes including the 50 Pound note are dated 1927 while the legendary 100 Pound note is in green.


Egyptian Notes:

  • Among the colorful Egyptian notes being offered is a 50 Piastres note of 1918 in very high grade with a sphinx at left, a lovely uniface 50 Pound Proof depicting a caravan of camels with tombs in the background, a large and high grade 100 Pound note featuring the citadel at Cairo, a mosque and a sail boat and an incredibly choice, bright and original 5 Piastres Currency note of 1917.

Israeli Monies:

  • Israeli coins, paper and medals are the crux of the collection and include the famous provisional issues of 1948, the rare and important inverted signature of the 100 Pruta Neeman-Eshkol fractional of 1952 and perhaps the most important and inclusive offering ever of Israel specimens, trials, proofs, progress notes and errors.
  • One of the most intriguing lots is a group of 5 early Israeli fractional notes all with the exact same low serial number.
  • Occasionally two notes with the same serial number are seen and Rosenblum has once seen three notes with the same number offered. He has never seen five fractional with the same serial number ever. Rosenblum’s father sold the set to “Mr. Philadelphia” almost 30 years ago.
  • The coins and medals in this section are equally as rare and attractive. Included are numerous patterns, specimens, errors and other rarities. The collection consists of four different 1960 Eight-grain 1 Agora patterns, off-metal issues of coins and medals, some patterns that Rosenblum believes may be unique, others that less than 5 are known and numerous other seldom seen coins and medals including the very rare Berne Die issue of the 1971 Let My People Go 10 Lirot commemorative coin.

WWII Materials:

  • “Mr. Philadelphia” also collected tokens and paper issues of concentration camps, ghettos, displaced persons camps, transit camps and other issues associated with World War II and later. Among the seldom seen items being offered in this section are lead patterns from the Lodz Ghetto, two different issues of Cyprus Canteen chits, a note from Gross-Rosen and many other very rare items. The collection an “error or test” 50 Mark Lodz Ghetto which was printed on a note with an extra wide margin and without a serial number.
  • Rosenblum first offered this note for sale in the November 1982 NICE III sale, later purchased it again and sold it a subsequent auction prior to 1995 and is now offering via auction for the third time. It is the plate note in Silent Witnesses: Civilian Camp Money of World War II by the father and daughter team of Ray and Steve Feller.

The sales will also contain perhaps the largest and most varied offering of “Kollel” notes ever assembled. “Kollel” notes are basically promissory notes issued to support students studying in the Holy Land during the last years of the Ottoman Empire. The notes were usually backed my either communities in Europe or notables living in the Holy Land. A few other areas that are especially strong in the collection are emergency small change tokens used in both the British Palestine Mandate as well as the young state of Israel from the early 1940’s through the early 1950’s, stock certificates and other large financial instruments used in the Holy Land during Ottoman and British rule and a number of letters, documents and signed photographs.


About William M. Rosenblum

Rosenblum has been issuing price lists and conducting auctions since 1971 and continues to be a leader in the field of Jewish and Holy Land related numismatic material. His sales do not have a buyer’s fee. The catalog, when ready in mid-October, will be available in both a printed version and an on-line version. Virtually all lots will be available for viewing at Rosenblum’s table at the October Denver Coin Expo, October 23-26.

The Philadelphia Collection auction will be available mid-October, closing November 13. A printed catalog will be sent gratis to Rosenblum’s regular clients, others can reserve the catalog (with prices realized to follow after the sale) for $15 for US delivery or $25 everywhere else.

For more information contact Bill Rosenblum at [email protected] or via phone at 720-981-0785. Other details will be announced from time to time at www.rosenblumcoins.com.

Coinweek is the top independent online media source for rare coin and currency news, with analysis and information contributed by leading experts across the numismatic spectrum.

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