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Collections Drive Sedwick’s Treasure Auction 26

Several coin collections crossed the auction block during Daniel Frank Sedwick LLC’s Treasure Auction 26. The live floor and online auction held Nov. 1-2, realized over $2.3 million in coins, medals, and bank notes sold.

The auction began with the John Pullin Collection of dated Mexican gold cob escudos. All of the coins were recovered from various wrecks of the 1715 Fleet, sunk on July 31, 1715, off Florida’s east coast. In just 18 lots, a total of $150,476 was raised. The highest price realized was for lot 7, a cob 4 escudos dated 1715J and graded by NGC as MS-62 that sold for $28,560 on an estimate of $10,000 to $20,000. This result was followed closely by lot 3, a cob 8 escudos dated 1714J and graded NGC MS-60 that saw $21,420 on an estimate of $20,000 and up. This coin boasts a pedigree to the salvors’ Real Eight Company collection as well as being plated in a January 1965 National Geographic article on the 1715 Fleet’s history.

Lot 7, a 1715J cob 4 escudos, from the Pullin collection was also plated in Dr. Frank Sedwick’s Practical Book of Cobs.

An additional $46,809 was garnered by the sale of 66 silver cob reales from Pullin’s collection. Most of the coins were dated, a quality scarcely seen on Mexican cobs for the time period. Many of these coins also hold pedigrees to the 1715 Fleet. The top-selling silver lot was lot 322, a Mexico City, Mexico, cob 8 reales dated 1709J that realized $3,332 on an estimate of $350 to $500.

All told, the John Pullin Collection earned $197,285 during Sedwick’s sale. The collector, John Pullin, gave a talk at the auction the day prior to the sale on collecting 1715 Fleet coins and how his collection was assembled. He also personally signed the lot tags for his coins in the sale.

A similar shipwreck coin collection, the Atocha Classics Collection, attracted interest from numismatists and shipwreck enthusiasts alike. The curated group was comprised of 49 lots of high-quality silver cob reales of various denominations recovered from the wreck of the Atocha, sunk in 1622 off Key West, Fla. The collection realized $112,812 after spirited bidding.

The top-selling lot was lot 149, a Potosi, Bolivia, cob 4 reales from the reign of Philip II that brought in $7,735 on a $2,000 to $3,000 estimate. The coin was awarded Grade 1, the highest possible grade for Atocha coins, on its special Mel Fisher, Inc. photo-certificate. It was also pedigreed to the Atocha Research Collection and plated in that collection’s 1988 catalog.

The gold “finger” bar was the primary way of transporting much wealth from the New World to Spain.

The third session of the auction contained the Whittier Collection of Bolivian Monetary Medals that raised $67,110 across 109 lots. The highest-selling lot was lot 622, a Potosi, Bolivia, 10 soles dated 1825 commemorating Simon Bolivar’s liberation of Chuquisaca and graded by PCGS as MS-64 that sold for $2,975.

The second offering of Whittier Bolivian medals will appear in Sedwick’s April 2020 Treasure Auction.

The sale also hosted the Santander Collection of Colombian Proclamation Medals. The collection, an assemblage of the rarest Colombian medals issued from 1724 to 1825, reached $34,391 across 17 lots. The highest-selling lot was lot 1137, a Bogota, Colombia, silver uniface 4 reales-sized die trial dated 1789 that realized $12,495 on a $7,000 to $10,000 estimate.

Aside from numismatic collections in the auction, other top earners include lot 82, a gold “finger” bar weighing 1.325 kilograms recovered from the Atocha that realized $77,350 on a $50,000 and up estimate. An 88 troy pound, 7.04 troy-ounce silver bar from the same wreck, lot 92, fetched $44,625 on a $25,000 and up estimate.

The highest-valued coin in the auction was lot 942, a Honduras gold 20 pesos dated 1888 and graded NGC AU 58. With an estimated mintage of 30 or fewer pieces and only three survivors known today, heavy bidding was expected. When the hammer dropped, the final sale price was $71,400 on a $40,000 and up estimate.

Lot 942, a Honduras 20 pesos that was most likely struck in a token
amount for a political reason rather than for practical circulation use.

Other top lots in the auction include:

• Lot 85 – Small gold disk weighing 373 g. from the Luz shipwreck (1752), sold for $30,940 on an estimate of $17,500 and up.

• Lot 42 – Lima, Peru, cob 4 escudos, 1705H, NGC MS-62, the finest and only example in NGC census, ex-1715 Fleet, sold for $28,560 on an estimate of $10,000 and up.

• Lot 407 – Mexico City, Mexico, cob 8 reales Royal (galano), 1715J, NGC XF details / plugged, repaired, sold for $20,230 on an estimate of $15,000 to $22,500.

• Lot 544 – Panama, cob 1 real, Philip II, assayer oX below denomination I to right, mintmark AP to left, king’s name missing in legend, unique, sold for $20,230 on an estimate of $3,500 and up.

• Lot 437 – Lima, Peru, cob 8 reales, 1659V (Series II), Royal-die obverse (unique), with Guatemala sun-over-mountains countermark (Type II, 1839) on cross, plate coin in the Standard Catalog, sold for $11,305 on an estimate of $6,000 to $9,000.

• Lot 534 – Potosi, Bolivia, cob 2 reales Heart, 1685VR, unique, sold for $10,710 on an estimate of $5,000 and up.

• Lot 1082 – Arequipa, Peru, 1/5 sol, 1885AC, NGC AU-55, finest known, ex-Whittier (stated on label), plated in the Standard Catalog, sold for $10,115 on an estimate of $5,000 and up.

• Lot 298 – USA (San Francisco Mint), gold $20 coronet Liberty “double eagle,” 1863-S, PCGS AU-58 / Brother Jonathan (1865), sold for $8,330 on an estimate of $8,000 to $12,000.

Full prices realized can be viewed at auction.sedwickcoins.com. The company’s next auction will be held on April 30 with a consignment deadline of March 1. Consignments can be done in person at the FUN Show (Jan. 9-12), New York International (Jan. 17-19), and Long Beach Coin Show (Feb. 20-22) or by email at office@sedwickcoins.com.

This story was originally published in Numismatic News. To subscribe, click here.

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