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Lot 30125

Image Information

Type Coin
Title Lot 30125
Date 1787
/Catalog #
Grade 65
Service NGC
Description 1787 COPPER Connecticut Copper, Draped Bust Left MS65 Brown NGC. M. 33.39-s.1, W-3960, R.4. 134.3 grains. This is a stunning Gem, and likely the finest known example of the variety. Obverse 33.39 was used with reverse dies Z.13, Z.20, and s.1, and reverse s.1 was used with obverse dies 33.29 (five known) and 33.39. David Bowers rates Miller 33.39-s.1 as URS-9, meaning 125 to 249 examples survive, and Michael Hodder calls it R.4 on the traditional Sheldon scale, equating to a population of 76 to 200 coins. Based on the data, we submit that there are 150 to 200 examples of this variety surviving in all grades. Strike weakness is evident on both sides of this piece, showing myriad original planchet marks on the devices. However, there is a complete absence of post-production blemishes on the lovely chocolate-brown surfaces, which are complemented by frosty mint luster. Traces of original red mint color are evident among the letters, especially on the obverse. This late die state example shows radial flowlines that draw the letters to the edge, die erosion that appears as surface stippling, and delicate die cracks with a heavier crack in front of the seated figure's profile on the reverse. While Miller 33.39-s.1 is best considered moderately scarce, most survivors are in low to middle circulated grades. The finest of seven examples in the ANS holdings appears to grade nearly XF. The 1975 Pine Tree-EAC coin was called VF plus, with some characteristics of XF. The Norweb family had a VF example, while the Taylor and Perkins coins were called XF, or nearly so. We have seen only one other piece that rivals this example, appearing on the Miller plate. In the Ford catalog, Michael Hodder called that piece Choice Uncirculated and the finest he had seen. The color plate in that catalog suggests a similar coin, although the Newman example appears slightly finer to this cataloger. Ex: Eric P. Newman Numismatic Education Society. Realized $35,250.00. Description courtesy of Heritage Auctions.

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