Heritage Auctions has so many sales each year that some may find it quite difficult to keep on top of what is being offered at any given time. When you think of this, it really is a very exciting time in world numismatics. We are seeing rarities surface at an increasing rate and prices are rising each time they trade hands.
In this accelerated atmosphere I think it can be exceptionally useful for market analysts, journalists and commentators to try to look as deeply as possible into each auction and point out to readers, followers and friends, as many interesting coins as possible. Though it’s a near endless and infinite task, I also find it quite entertaining and rewarding, as you discovery something new almost every time. A continuing education in numismatics is waiting for you in every Heritage Auction.
This article, for instance, will focus on the Heritage Auction #3093 of World & Ancient Coins. It’s a good sized Heritage Signature sale with about 850 lots, set to close in a few days, over the period from Oct. 28-29, so readers will need to act very quickly to participate. Is it a large sale, but could you overlook it, certainly could happen amongst so many Auctions occurring every month.
We’ll focus on a handful of interesting items here, but believe me; these only touch the surface, so I’d highly recommend that interested parties hop over the Heritage Auctions website at www.coins.ha.com directly after reading this story and search through lots more thoroughly for items of more personal interest. I should also point out that the coins illustrated here will offer as much information in their captions as you may find in the text of the article, so if you see something interesting, please do take the time to read the caption.
My personal favorite piece in the sale is the Columnario of 1770. The KM38 8 Reales of Colombia is an exceptionally difficult coin to acquire. There are four dates to the type, but all are rare. The Heritage write-up for this lot is so masterful; I will take the liberty to quote it almost entirely here, as an education for most of us.
“One of the most challenging Columnarios of the entire Spanish Colonial series, the so-called "Pillar" Dollars minted at Nuevo Reino in Santa Fe de Bogota are fiercely contested and known from a mere four dates: 1759, 1760, 1762, and 1770, all of which are exceedingly rare. Of these, the final date was entirely unknown until the discovery of a small hoard of 12-14 examples in the foundation stone of the Nuestra Señora del Pilar church in Bogota in 2006, meaning that specimens were entirely unavailable to such famous collections as Medina, Salbach, and Sigfried von Schuckman. Razed during the tragic 1948 El Bogozato riots triggered by the assassination of political leader José Eliecer Gaitán, the association of the former church school for well-to-do girls with this specific date for the type points strongly to a specific association between such coins and the ceremonies performed at Nuestra Señora del Pilar, with Yonaka supposing that they were never released for regular circulation. Indeed, contemporary documentation has since come to light suggesting that just 17 1770 8 Reales were originally produced specially for use during the 3-hour-long ceremony that accompanied the laying of the foundation stone.”