1793 Chain cent coin to see bids in excess of $150,000 in LA



2015-06-26 13:09:03

1793 Chain cent coin to see bids in excess of $150,000 in LA

A 1793 Chain cent with fantastic eye-appeal leads important US coins in February

In a four-day sale that spans February 3-6 in Los Angeles, a superb example of the 1793 Chain cent will sell with a $150,000+ estimate.

1793 Chain cent auction The design of the Chain cent was unpopular, with one newspaper writing that Liberty looks as though she was "in a fright".

The coin comes from one of the three collections to be offered in the auction: The Hunter Collection, The Paul Gerrie Collection and The Wolfen Family Foundation.

The Chain cent was America's first large cent, as well as the first coin produced by the United States Mint. Struck in 1793 only, it was met with disdain by the general public, who criticised its chain design as representative of slavery, although it was intended to symbolise the newly formed Union.

Around 36,103 examples of the coin were struck during the short time in which they were produced. This example is the Sheldon 2 variety, which was struck using a different obverse die to any other variety of the Chain cent and is considered very scarce. It has been graded AU50 Average Plus by Noyes, although the auction house believes it to be closer to AU55.

An example of the 1793 Chain cent from the Eliasberg collection currently holds the world record for any American copper coin, after selling for $1.3m in January 2012. The world record for any coin ever sold at auction was beaten on January 24, when a 1794 Flowing Hair silver dollar sold for $10m, making a 26.5% increase on the previous record.

Starring in the world coins section of the auction is a gold octadrachm from the reign of Ptolemy V, whose coronation was famously commemorated by the Rosetta Stone, which is now housed in the British Museum.

The octadrachm, considered one of the finest Greek coins, displays remarkable artistry and is in a cameo-like gem state. It will be sold with a $200,000-250,000 estimate.

In a January 9-10 auction in New York, an example of Kimon's famed Facing Head of Arethusa sold for $180,000 - an 80% increase on estimate.

Paul Fraser Collectibles offers an outstanding array of rare coins for sale, including our William IV 1831 crown, which displays the work of legendary engraver William Wyon and is a previously unrecorded variety.

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