One of the first people I met on the grounds of the Iola Old Car Show yesterday where I worked the Old Cars Ultimate Garage Giveaway was Dean Oakes.
The veteran Iowa City, Iowa, coin and paper money dealer is also a car buff.
We traded notes about the state of business.
I said I thought the summer doldrums were in evidence and he said interest in gold and silver rather than collector coins was keeping his business activity up.
He had an interesting story to tell.
A woman called. She had some silver dollars from her uncle’s estate.
Oakes asked what dates they were.
She replied, 1921, 1922 and 1923.
Oakes immediately thought what coin dealers think in those circumstances.
The 1921 is the most common Morgan dollar and the 1922 and 1923 are the most common Peace dollars.
Pretty standard stuff.
He quoted $14 each. He elaborated a little and said the price might stretch to $16 if they were higher circulated grades, or $12 if they were worn slick.
Lo and behold, when he got to see the coins he discovered that there were 11 1921 dollars and they were all the rare Peace dollar, which has a mintage of just over 1 million pieces.
There was not a single Morgan dollar in the group.
All of the 1921 coins had wear, so Dean paid what they were worth.
The woman said her uncle particularly liked the 1921s and had searched diligently for them.
His interest in them had paid off for her and I get an interesting story to tell in the bargain.