Sold -- Thank you!
For the last 25 years, I bought almost every Mexican pattern that crossed my path. (I still kick myself for missing a few though.) One reason was to have the finest set, and I could do that best if they were all in-hand so I could examine them side-by-side. Another reason was to look for varieties. And I have found several. The final reason was to have coins for trade. Unfortunately, any time I found coins I needed, the owners wanted cash, not trade, so the duplicates built up in my collection.
In 2021, I started selling off the lower value coins in my collection and coins for which I no longer had an interest in collecting. That was a fairly successful exercise, so I decided it was time to let go of some of my accumulated pattern duplicates so others could collect and enjoy them. After all, how can you have collectors of a series for which people can't get coins?
So I sent a group of duplicates to Heritage for auction in conjunction with the NY International Numismatic Convention.
Two coins will be in HA Platinum Night in NY on 10 January. The rest will be in some weekly auctions leading up to the NYINC show and in the HA Signature Sale on 19 January.
I will try to post photos, links to the auction lots, and some color commentary here as I have time.
If you want to bypass all the commentary and get right to the coins, here are the links that should bring you directly to my lots:
Signature Sale Lots
A brief comment about condition. Unlike US patterns, Mexican patterns were generally not made as delicacies for collectors. And unlike French essais, they were not minted in large quantities to be given out. These patterns were made and used for their intended purpose (and sometimes even circulated as the real thing). So they aren't high grades or even UNCs. They are rare to begin with, and then they were used, which makes their survival even more special.
I sincerely hope some fellow Forum-ites bid on and win some of these cool coins. They are stuff that you don't see every day. ¡Buena suerte!
Signature Sale Lots:
Mexico 1732-Mo Philip V Silver Real (Trial?) PCGS F Detail Environmental Damage.
Sure it's not pretty, but it's filthy rare!
The Real and 4 Reales above are thought by Gilboy to be trials struck directly from the matricies sent to Mexico from Spain. While conclusive proof is lacking, they are the first year of milled coinage in the new world, rare, and important. Hence I collected them along with Mexican patterns.
The Medio Real, Real, and 2 Reales are usually found in simply awful condition, the above Real being a bit more presentable than usual. The 4 Reales seems a bit more common than the others with a very few nicer specimens extant, and this one, while a sea salvage piece, is quite presentable. My estimate of the surviving population of Reales is less than 10 and of the 4 Reales is about 10-15.
Both pieces were formerly in the collection of David Grey.
Mexico 1768-Mo Charles III Brass Pattern 1/16 Real PCGS AU Detail Cleaned.
One of the earliest patterns of Mexico, this pattern comes struck in brass (as this example) or bronze/copper. Although it is a cleaned AU, it is lustrous and a very high grade specimen for the issue, most having damage of some kind. The VE monogram is thought to mean "vellon" (copper mixed with a little silver). The purpose of this issue was to displace the unofficial local & private issues that were not taxed, but it never occurred.
This piece came out of a very old collection from Barcelona.
These enigmatic issues have sparked much discussion and research, but there is still nothing conclusive known about them. First thought to be patterns for a minor issue of Mexico, then thought to be patterns for a Barilla issue of the Philippines, and finally thought to be rare regular issues for Mexico. Each theory has its proponents and detractors, but I don't think they have been conclusively identified. As they are so rare, I collected them as patterns.
The present pieces are unusually high grade for the issue as they are usually found in wretched condition--witness those from the Huntington Collection formerly at the ANS. They were in my main collection for many years until an uncirculated pair was discovered in Europe about 10 years ago.
Now for some Republic coins.
Mexico 1841-Mo Bronze Centavo Pattern PCGS SP45(BN).
This was one of my earliest Mexican patterns, purchased in 1998. Ex Museum of Connecticut History.
It is the first Mexican coin with a CENTAVO denomination (as the first Mexican coin with a PESO denomination was a pattern by the same engraver dated 1842).
Mexico 1862-Mo Bronze Centavo Pattern PCGS SP53(BN).
These mostly come lightly circulated like this one.
Mexico 1829-PiJS Bronze 8R Pattern PCGS SP62BN.
Believed to have been struck in London as the dies are in the British Museum.
Mexico 1840-DoOMC Silver (?) Plated 8R Pattern NGC MS62.
This coin is believed to have been struck in France.
Mexico 1866-Mo Silver Small Letters Maximilian Pattern Peso PCGS SP63.
Very pretty coin and among the finest graded. Certainly much cheaper and prettier than the MS66 that sold back in the summer.
Mexico 1866-Mo Copper Large Letters Maximilian Pattern Peso NGC AU Details - Surface Hairlines.
This is among the nicer examples of this coin. They usually come quite banged up.
Mexico 1810-MoMH Silver Pattern 8R PCGS SP55.
It may be an AU55, but it's one of only 3 known. Cool coin! Great addition to your set of Resplandores.
Mexico 1889-MoAM Silver Pattern 50c PCGS SP62.
All of the 1889 series of patterns are extremely rare, but they normally come in white metal. This silver 50c is one of 2 known in silver. And there are no other denominations of the 1889 patterns that exist in silver. Ex. Novotny Collection.
Mexico 1883 Copper 2 Centavo Obverse Trial NGC MS64RB.
The 5 Centavo of this series is the coin normally found as a uniface pattern. Finding a 2 Centavo is pretty special.
I only know of one other set.
Mexico 1896-MoM Gold Peso Pattern struck in Silver NGC AU58.
Mexico 1870-MoC Copper 20 Peso Pattern PCGS XF Detail - Plugged.
I must sound like a broken record here, but all these 1869-1870 copper patterns are extremely rare, and they all come in wretched condition. These are how they are typically found.
Mexico 1969-Mo Copper-Nickel Pattern Peso PCGS SP65.
This is the second-finest example that I know about. The other 65s that have been auctioned in the last 10 years were dogs, which dragged down the price of these nice ones. Many of these were mishandled by non-numismatists when they were released. Very popular coin!
Mexico 1979 Brass Pattern Peso Obverse Trial PCGS SP65.
These patterns were the predecessor to the 1980-Mo Peso Pattern with the Caballero obverse. They don't have a Mo mintmark, though a very few have a M mintmark for some strange reason. They were found in the estate of the former Chief Engraver for the Mexican Mint and were purchased from his family. (Kind of like some of the Charles Barber patterns that exist in the market.) These exist in brass (as here), copper, silver, and copper-nickel, though not all types are represented in all metals. The following 3 lots are a full set of the brass versions.
Mexico 1979 Brass Pattern Peso Classic Eagle PCGS SP65.
Same obverse, with the Classic Eagle reverse.
Mexico 1979 Brass Pattern Peso Modern Eagle PCGS SP65.
This Modern Eagle version completes a nicely-matched set of these patterns.
Mexico 1979 Copper-Nickel Pattern Peso Classic Eagle PCGS SP65.
Here is a copper-nickel example with the Classic Eagle reverse. These are rarer than the brass or copper versions.
Mexico 1972-Mo Silver Pattern 10 Peso PCGS SP65.
Not sure why there isn’t more interest in this pattern. It was the first non-round coin of Mexico and there are only about 5 known.
Mexico 1978-Mo Silver Pattern Onza PCGS SP62.
You like Mexican Onzas? Well here is a pattern! You probably have never seen this before, and most likely will never see one again.
Mexico 1978-Mo Silver Pattern Onza PCGS SP61.
And another Onza pattern type. Once in a lifetime opportunity here.
Mexico 1980/70-Mo Silver Proof Onza PCGS PR63 Cameo.
This isn't a pattern, but a rare proof striking of the 1980/70 silver Onza. I only know of 2 others.