One of the greatest and most successful collectors of this century had this philosophy:
“BUYING THE RIGHT COINS IS IMPORTANT…THE PRICE IS SECONDARY… IF YOU HAVE THE RIGHT COINS, THE PRICE WILL SOON CATCH UP AND PASS WHAT YOU PAID.”
–Excerpt from Stack’s John J. Ford, Jr. Collection catalogue, October 14,2003.
Many of our clients have subscribed to this philosophy and have created extremely significant collections. Those clients who knew to buy “the right coins” and who have sold their holdings have indeed, made handsome profits.
This is still happening today…
Monaco is proud to offer a magnificent matte-proof gold set struck in the year 1911. It was a year that witnessed the first transcontinental flight and the first running of the Indianapolis 500. It was also the year in which no more than 191 gold proof coins were struck in each of the four gold denominations for collectors. According to well-known authors, approximately 20-25 sets could still be in existence!
The Indian head design was introduced in 1907 ($10s and $20s) and 1908 ($2.50s and $5s) and matte proof coins were manufactured for each of the years 1908 to 1915. An art-deco satin finish was substituted into the design for 1909 and 1910, but many complained the satin finish was too difficult to distinguish from the business strike coins then freely circulating within the economy, so in 1911 the mint re-introduced the matte finish. Nevertheless, even the matte finishes were not popular with collectors. As it turns out, many of the sets were unsold and then melted down. This is critical to understanding the true rarity of the surviving population.
Each of the denominations is a major rarity today – but an evenly matched set is truly a numismatic landmark.
1911 Matte Proof Gold Sets
Most advanced and sophisticated collectors realize the value of a collection is enhanced by the sets within. Few collectors have the opportunity to acquire sets, especially of proof gold. We have researched back to 1979, and can find only 11 relevant sets (2 are impaired and therefore not included) that have sold at public auction – and all come from prominent collections (collectors) of our time. It’s interesting to see how they have compared with each other, not only by grade and condition, by the price realized. It is quite clear that the set presently being offered is the FINEST to have ever been publicly offered, based upon this research.
|ID||Collection||Year Sold||Avg Grade||Price Realized|
|1||John W. Garrett||1980||64.5||$ 163,500|
|2||Loius E. Eliasberg||1982||65.75||$ 75,350|
|3||Floyd M. Starr||1992||65.75||$ 136,400|
|4||1994 ANA Convention Sale||1994||67||$ 150,700|
|5||Sam & Rae Bloomfield||1996||66||$ 122,100|
|6||James U. Blanchard||1998||65.25||$ 125,000|
|7||Ed Trompeter||1998||65.5||$ 156,400|
|8||Thomas Moores||1999||66.5||$ 123,750|
|9||Walter Childs||1999||65.5||$ 147,200|
|10||Lawrence E. Licht||2005||65||$ 252,750|
|11||NY Connoiseur||2006||66.75||$ 267,950|
|12||Monaco (the present set)||2011||67.25||$ 385,000|
Depending upon how one evaluates the unpublished PR68 $10 eagle, using our evaluations below, this set should have a published price of between $434,000 and $469,000 according to the Collectors Corner fair market value scale. Yet through our channels, we can offer this set for $385,000. Here is the breakdown by coin:
Indian $2.50 quarter eagle, NGC Matte Proof-67.
Despite the fact that NGC has seen 96 coins in all grades, only 18 have been designated 67 with 12 finer. Undoubtedly many of these submissions are of the same coin. We can only account for eight (8) appearances of the PR67 quarter eagle in 67 grades over the past 20 years.
What we find most interesting is the escalation of growth in price over the past decade.
- Between 2000 and 2004, the average auction price realized is $23,000.
- Between 2006 and 2009, the average auction price realized is $37,950.
- Since 2009, the average auction price realized is $46,072.
- We call this exceptional growth and a great investment!
- The future looks good as the published price is $59,000 (Collectors Universe).
Indian $5 half eagle, NGC Matte Proof-67.
Only 139 coins were struck this year for the half eagle denomination. In all, 56 coins have been certified in all grades with 11 designated 67 with only 4 finer. There have been 13 appearances at auction for a 67 graded coin, four of which are for the same coins. As with the quarter eagle, the half eagle also shows sound growth:
- Between 2000 and 2004, the average auction price realized is $47,840.
- Between 2006 and 2009, the average auction price realized is $54,625.
- Since 2009, the average auction price realized is $69,958. Most recently, we’ve recorded PR67 graded coins having realized more than $83,000 (2009).
- The published price is now $95,000 (Collectors Universe).
Indian $10 eagle, NGC Matte Proof-68.
Even though the mint produced 191 matte proof quarter eagles in 1911, they saw fit to mint only 95 of the $10 coins. Only 27 coins have been certified by NGC in all grades, of which an astounding 3 coins have achieved the lofty 68 grade level. THIS IS ONE OF THOSE COINS! It is clearly in the Condition-Census and could very well be the FINEST KNOWN example of the 1911 matte proof eagle.
There has never been an auction appearance for a PR68 graded 1911 Indian eagle coin. In fact, out of the entire 1908-1915 series, only two PR68 coins have sold at auction, a 1908 (1999) and a 1913 (1996, 2005). Clearly this coin represents much of the value of this 1911 four piece set.
It is somewhat difficult to ascertain a true Fair Market Value for a PR68 eagle, especially as even Collectors Universe has it unpublished, but comparative analysis may help here. The average difference in price between grades is 42%. Given that number, we conservatively estimate the published value, if there was one, to be $165,000. We may be way off, however, as just in the past two weeks a NGC PR67 1910 coin sold for $138,000. This could mean a PR68 coin should price out at $200,000!
Saint-Gaudens $20 double eagle, NGC Matte Proof-67.
Some original estimates of the mintage for the matte proof 1911 double eagle are as high as 100 pieces, however, two prominent authors have suggested a mere 20 to 25 coins were struck. Apparently, there are inadequate mint records to get a definitive number and the estimates are based upon the number of pieces that have surfaced over the past forty years. The total NGC certified population stands at 44 coins with 10 of those in Proof-67 grade and unbelievably, 5 finer!
There have only been 6 appearances at auction for a 67 graded coin since 1994.
- Between 1994 and 2000, the average auction price realized is $55,550.
- From 2003 through 2006, the average auction appearance realized $92,216, although other PR67 coins were realizing an average of $88,933 during the same time-frame.
- Only one example sold at public auction after 2009, the price realized being $103,500
- The published price is presently $115,000 (Collectors Universe).