Could there be only two 1842 Seated Liberty, Small Date, Small Letters half dollars?
Bill Bugert writes in Vol. 2 Issue #1 of the E-Gobrecht newsletter that he knows of only two examples.
It was suggested in the December edition that there may be four.
The topic came up when an uncirculated example sold for $57,500 at Stack?s Nov. 30, 2005, auction.
Bugert, editor of E-Gobrecht and co-author of The Complete Guide to Liberty Seated Half Dollars, makes note of this piece and Brian Greer?s discovery of a very fine specimen in the article for the newsletter, which is the electronic publication of the Liberty Seated Collectors Club.
Greer presented his example of the variety with the rare small letters reverse in the print Gobrecht Journal issue #72, dated July 1998.
There were rumors that there existed two other mid-circulated-grade examples, but Bugert writes that Greer has found out the other two did not exist.
Bugert first noticed the piece sold in the Stack?s auction when he received the auction catalog for the sale in early November. Turning first to lots with Liberty Seated half dollars, Bugert saw it.
He and his half dollar cohort, Randy Wiley, made plans to bid on the coin at the auction, which took place in New York City.
The Stack?s sale lot in question came up for bidding at 7:35 p.m. and opened at $11,000. Bugert said that within 15 to 20 seconds, it closed at $50,000 ? or $57,500 with the buyer?s fee.
Copies of the E-Gobrecht newsletter can be viewed at www.seateddimevarieties.com/LSCC.htm.