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hidden coins in Museums

privaterarecoincollectorprivaterarecoincollector Posts: 629 ✭✭✭✭✭
edited September 22, 2017 12:21PM in U.S. Coin Forum

There might be quite a few rare US coins hidden in Museums, potentially a finest known we havent heard about so far.

Found these in Berlin, the 1796 quarter eagle no stars looks unc from the Photo and could even grade PCGS 64. I plan to go there and see these coins. Most of them were donated in 1861 from a German collection with 17.600 coins.

http://ikmk.smb.museum/object?id=18259689

The 1795 half eagle also looks nice

http://ikmk.smb.museum/object?lang=en&id=18257906

These coins could really grade anything, I went to London and saw the famous Banks 1795 Eagle and 1794 Dollar and I graded them both AU heavily cleaned. The 1794 Dollar is a MS 66 coin with heavy hairlines from cleaning, no idea how to officially grade such a coin.

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    JBKJBK Posts: 14,762 ✭✭✭✭✭

    The state (Bavaria) coin museum in Munich has a very nice 18th century US silver dollar (not sure of the date - maybe 1795). It was in great shape - sort of steely colored, not lusterous.

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    cardinalcardinal Posts: 2,005 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @privaterarecoincollector said:
    There might be quite a few rare US coins hidden in Museums, potentially a finest known we havent heard about so far.

    These coins could really grade anything, I went to London and saw the famous Banks 1795 Eagle and 1794 Dollar and I graded them both AU heavily cleaned. The 1794 Dollar is a MS 66 coin with heavy hairlines from cleaning, no idea how to officially grade such a coin.

    In my book on the United States Silver Dollars of 1794, I list the British Museum specimen as "AU Details, Cleaned."

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    yosclimberyosclimber Posts: 4,596 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Wow, that 1795 half eagle is amazing.

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    RogerBRogerB Posts: 8,852 ✭✭✭✭✭

    There are many pre-1860 US coins - circulation and proof - in foreign national and local museums. Few are on display. Most were purchased direct from the Mint in a routine exchange for the Mint Cabinet of Coins and Ores.

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    dengadenga Posts: 903 ✭✭✭

    The Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia, has a nice assortment
    of early U.S. coins and medals, mostly derived from the Count Stroganov
    collection. The Count had sent one of his employees to European coin
    dealers in the early 1860s and had purchased a wide assortment of pieces
    from various countries. The collection was seized by the Bolsheviks in 1917.

    Parts of the U.S. holdings are on display from time to time in an adjoining
    room open to the public.

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    earlyAurumearlyAurum Posts: 718 ✭✭✭✭✭

    interesting find. the 1796 looks very well preserved. definitely has potential to up there in the CC

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    1630Boston1630Boston Posts: 13,772 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @RogerB , I truly like the manner in which you add logical info to explain things such as this, thanks :smile:

    Successful transactions with : MICHAELDIXON, Manorcourtman, Bochiman, bolivarshagnasty, AUandAG, onlyroosies, chumley, Weiss, jdimmick, BAJJERFAN, gene1978, TJM965, Smittys, GRANDAM, JTHawaii, mainejoe, softparade, derryb

    Bad transactions with : nobody to date

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    amwldcoinamwldcoin Posts: 11,269 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I wonder why there aren't any in Moscow? I scoured over every coin in the museum there and don't recall seeing a single US coin! I hit every coin shop in Moscow and only came away with 1 purchase....a 1914-S Buffalo Nickel in AU for $20!

    @denga said:
    The Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia, has a nice assortment
    of early U.S. coins and medals, mostly derived from the Count Stroganov
    collection. The Count had sent one of his employees to European coin
    dealers in the early 1860s and had purchased a wide assortment of pieces
    from various countries. The collection was seized by the Bolsheviks in 1917.

    Parts of the U.S. holdings are on display from time to time in an adjoining
    room open to the public.

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    JimnightJimnight Posts: 10,818 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited October 2, 2017 5:25PM

    .

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    it would be interesting to meet the curator and see what, if anything, it would take to buy those - they might need the money more than the coins - if anyone could do it, it's someone like you

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    SeatedTonersSeatedToners Posts: 392 ✭✭✭✭

    @privaterarecoincollector said:
    There might be quite a few rare US coins hidden in Museums, potentially a finest known we havent heard about so far.

    Found these in Berlin, the 1796 quarter eagle no stars looks unc from the Photo and could even grade PCGS 64. I plan to go there and see these coins. Most of them were donated in 1861 from a German collection with 17.600 coins.

    http://ikmk.smb.museum/object?id=18259689

    The 1795 half eagle also looks nice

    http://ikmk.smb.museum/object?lang=en&id=18257906

    These coins could really grade anything, I went to London and saw the famous Banks 1795 Eagle and 1794 Dollar and I graded them both AU heavily cleaned. The 1794 Dollar is a MS 66 coin with heavy hairlines from cleaning, no idea how to officially grade such a coin.

    wow those are some pretty coins! waaaay out of my league right now though so I'll stick to building a proof seated collection

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    @Washingtoniana said:
    it would be interesting to meet the curator and see what, if anything, it would take to buy those - they might need the money more than the coins - if anyone could do it, it's someone like you

    good point, they are Muesums, they dont sell anything here in Europe, they would not even know how to do it legally. But I will try to go there so see them, these two could really be anything. They have a few more nice coins there, the rest is AU:

    http://ikmk.smb.museum/object?id=18203948

    http://ikmk.smb.museum/object?id=18203950

    http://ikmk.smb.museum/object?id=18259988

    http://ikmk.smb.museum/object?id=18221957

    http://ikmk.smb.museum/object?id=18259654

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    yosclimberyosclimber Posts: 4,596 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited September 22, 2017 11:02PM

    Benoni Friedländer - d.1858
    Private scholars and coin collectors.
    Father of Julius Friedländer (who would later run the Munz Cabinet).
    On the basis of testamentary wishes (even for unfavorable conditions) his collection was to be sold to the Mint.
    1861 (dated 6 April 1861 under Acc. No. 1861 / 21580-27592) the antique, medieval and modern coins for the Münzkabinett were acquired. Medals then in 1869.
    1861 a total of 17,816 coins, 6,013 antique and 11,803 medieval and modern stamp. It was paid 16,000 thalers, 5,000 of them for the ancient coins.
    It was purchased in 1869 (with date 11 January 1869): A total of 400 Italian medals from the 15th and early 16th century. The latter are from the collection of the Princess Elisa Bacciocchi, the sister of Napoleon I and the temporary Duchess of Tuscany (until 1814). The medals went to Berlin via D. Sestini, who lived temporarily at her court.
    These 400 Italian medals from the Friedlaender collection were sold to the Royal Collection for 2,000 talers, according to the documents of the Coin Cabinet (letter dated 18.12.1868). They had previously been valued by Henri Hoffmann in Paris at 4,000 talers.
    There were also 21 medals on numismatists, 428 coins of the dump and wipper time, as well as the paper money collection, which were given to the coin cabinet in 1869 with the same process.
    Lit .: Friedländer - von Sallet ² (1877) 32-34; J. Friedländer, ZfN 24, 1904, 1-16; A. Erman, My Becoming and My Action (1929) 124.
    https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benoni_Friedl%C3%A4nder

    Sounds like Friedländer's ancients could be very nice as well. Here's a nice Augustus.
    ikmk.smb.museum/object?lang=en&id=18202555

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    @cardinal said:

    @privaterarecoincollector said:
    There might be quite a few rare US coins hidden in Museums, potentially a finest known we havent heard about so far.

    These coins could really grade anything, I went to London and saw the famous Banks 1795 Eagle and 1794 Dollar and I graded them both AU heavily cleaned. The 1794 Dollar is a MS 66 coin with heavy hairlines from cleaning, no idea how to officially grade such a coin.

    In my book on the United States Silver Dollars of 1794, I list the British Museum specimen as "AU Details, Cleaned."

    Hi, did you grade the 1795 Eagle too ?

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    @denga said:
    The Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia, has a nice assortment
    of early U.S. coins and medals, mostly derived from the Count Stroganov
    collection. The Count had sent one of his employees to European coin
    dealers in the early 1860s and had purchased a wide assortment of pieces
    from various countries. The collection was seized by the Bolsheviks in 1917.

    Parts of the U.S. holdings are on display from time to time in an adjoining
    room open to the public.

    Do you know what they have regarding US coins ? Anything they have online ?

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    northcoinnorthcoin Posts: 4,987 ✭✭✭✭✭

    While I don't recall seeing any U.S. coins in the lot, when I was in Crete I stumbled across a small museum that had a display of coins that had been found on the Island of Crete - most were from centuries ago.

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    BigMooseBigMoose Posts: 1,466 ✭✭✭

    John J. Ford claimed that there was a gem unc 1795 Reeded Edge large Cent in the Hermitage in St. Petersburg. I have no idea if this is true or just a rumor.
    Oliver, perhaps you could do a one for one trade with the museums for a same date coin in lesser condition and some cash?? They might be agreeable to this.

    TomT-1794

    Check out some of my 1794 Large Cents on www.coingallery.org
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    dengadenga Posts: 903 ✭✭✭
    edited September 23, 2017 5:50AM

    @privaterarecoincollector said:

    @denga said:
    The Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia, has a nice assortment
    of early U.S. coins and medals, mostly derived from the Count Stroganov
    collection. The Count had sent one of his employees to European coin
    dealers in the early 1860s and had purchased a wide assortment of pieces
    from various countries. The collection was seized by the Bolsheviks in 1917.

    Parts of the U.S. holdings are on display from time to time in an adjoining
    room open to the public.

    Do you know what they have regarding US coins ? Anything they have online ?

    I examined the coins in person but did not have the time to make a list.
    The holdings, in a general way, were written up in the April 25, 1995, issue of
    Numismatic News. One of the nicer pieces that I remember was a Chain AMERI
    in XF condition.

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    rickoricko Posts: 98,724 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I never saw any U.S. coins while living/working in Europe (Portugal) or traveling to other countries.... I did visit a few museums, the only coin shop I recall was in Copenhagen. It makes sense that museums and some private collections would have a few treasures... coins have always been a collectible item. Precious metals would have appealed to the political class and the elites. Cheers, RickO

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    @BigMoose said:
    John J. Ford claimed that there was a gem unc 1795 Reeded Edge large Cent in the Hermitage in St. Petersburg. I have no idea if this is true or just a rumor.
    Oliver, perhaps you could do a one for one trade with the museums for a same date coin in lesser condition and some cash?? They might be agreeable to this.

    While it makes sense, they might have a certain protocol for a coin to leave the house, trying to find out. Also I dont have lesser conditions but should not be a problem to buy some and trade. Really want to see them in person, want to see how I would grade the 1796 NS, could be anything from AU 58 / NG to 64 / 65.

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    The quarter eagle NS could be MS 62

    The half eagle could be MS 64 or MS 65.

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    7Jaguars7Jaguars Posts: 7,266 ✭✭✭✭✭

    The British Museum has untold holdings, some of it organized and some not. They IMO have coins that make the Smithsonian look to be at Kindergarten status, at least as far as diversity. I only looked at very small specific areas at coins only a few known in private hands and they literally had hundreds in myriad varieties. And in general even though there is a lot of organization, there are areas that are not. Who knows what lurks there? And how about the Royal's collection? QEII will doubtlessly have some fabulous rarities and would be interesting to know more.

    Love that Milled British (1830-1960)
    Well, just Love coins, period.
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    CascadeChrisCascadeChris Posts: 2,517 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I smell a new Travel Channel show... Coin Mysteries at the Museum

    The more you VAM..
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    @CascadeChris said:
    I smell a new Travel Channel show... Coin Mysteries at the Museum

    I would love that !

    Really, who knows what is out there ?? Who would have imagined a Gem 1795 Eagle and Choice MS 1796 NS quarter eagle in some random museum in Berlin lying there since 1861 ??!!

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    @7Jaguars said:
    The British Museum has untold holdings, some of it organized and some not. They IMO have coins that make the Smithsonian look to be at Kindergarten status, at least as far as diversity. I only looked at very small specific areas at coins only a few known in private hands and they literally had hundreds in myriad varieties. And in general even though there is a lot of organization, there are areas that are not. Who knows what lurks there? And how about the Royal's collection? QEII will doubtlessly have some fabulous rarities and would be interesting to know more.

    I saw all the US coins they have in the British Museum, there were a few really cool ones but just a few. Incl. Proof 1834 Classic Head quarter eagle and half eagle BTW. And they cleaned their 1794 Dollar that otherwise for sure is 66+. But the real strength of the British Museum is the ancient and british coins. Their vaults here are so deep that even after 100 hours of viewing you will not have seen all of them.

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    7Jaguars7Jaguars Posts: 7,266 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Yes, I was looking at trial alloys of the 1920s and the trays went on and on and on. Then I looked up some obscure Cretan pieces that are almost never seen and they did have 100s. One caveat, and they may get a bit mad about this is that amidst all the records and scholarship, they have a bit of Latin to them.
    What do I mean, well there is a bit of disorganization if you look carefully and some things that are not quite rational. That is why I am not at all sure they may not have a spare hundred or two US delicacies NOT in regular trays.

    Love that Milled British (1830-1960)
    Well, just Love coins, period.
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    RonyahskiRonyahski Posts: 3,116 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @privaterarecoincollector said:

    @7Jaguars said:
    The British Museum has untold holdings, some of it organized and some not. They IMO have coins that make the Smithsonian look to be at Kindergarten status, at least as far as diversity. I only looked at very small specific areas at coins only a few known in private hands and they literally had hundreds in myriad varieties. And in general even though there is a lot of organization, there are areas that are not. Who knows what lurks there? And how about the Royal's collection? QEII will doubtlessly have some fabulous rarities and would be interesting to know more.

    I saw all the US coins they have in the British Museum, there were a few really cool ones but just a few. Incl. Proof 1834 Classic Head quarter eagle and half eagle BTW. And they cleaned their 1794 Dollar that otherwise for sure is 66+. But the real strength of the British Museum is the ancient and british coins. Their vaults here are so deep that even after 100 hours of viewing you will not have seen all of them.

    I believe you meant to say 1836 Classic Head quarter eagle and half eagle, pictured here. Did you happen to note if they had any accession records for the coins?

    Some refer to overgraded slabs as Coffins. I like to think of them as Happy Coins.
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    WinLoseWinWinLoseWin Posts: 1,481 ✭✭✭✭✭

    .
    .
    Anyone know of other non-US museums that have traded, sold or auctioned off significant US coinage?

    The only one I recall recently is the Royal Mint Museum in 2013 auctioning duplicate 1859 US Proof coins including some of the gold proofs. Below is a link to the results (article starts about one-third the way down the page). Also, anyone know why PCGS uses different, lower price results on these coins than shown in the article? Did they leave off the buyers premium or use a different Pounds to Dollars exchange rate?

    coinsweekly.com/en/Review-auction/Morton--Eden-GB-London-06-March-2013/10?&id=1376

    Surely there have been more, but I don't know. Seem to recall reading stories of such, though seems like they were long in the past.
    .
    .

    "To Be Esteemed Be Useful" - 1792 Birch Cent --- "I personally think we developed language because of our deep need to complain." - Lily Tomlin

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    @Ronyahski said:

    @privaterarecoincollector said:

    @7Jaguars said:
    The British Museum has untold holdings, some of it organized and some not. They IMO have coins that make the Smithsonian look to be at Kindergarten status, at least as far as diversity. I only looked at very small specific areas at coins only a few known in private hands and they literally had hundreds in myriad varieties. And in general even though there is a lot of organization, there are areas that are not. Who knows what lurks there? And how about the Royal's collection? QEII will doubtlessly have some fabulous rarities and would be interesting to know more.

    I saw all the US coins they have in the British Museum, there were a few really cool ones but just a few. Incl. Proof 1834 Classic Head quarter eagle and half eagle BTW. And they cleaned their 1794 Dollar that otherwise for sure is 66+. But the real strength of the British Museum is the ancient and british coins. Their vaults here are so deep that even after 100 hours of viewing you will not have seen all of them.

    I believe you meant to say 1836 Classic Head quarter eagle and half eagle, pictured here. Did you happen to note if they had any accession records for the coins?

    Yes, these two. Didnt see the records.

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    They just replied me, will never sell or trade any coins, but invited me to come and see them.

    Will go next year and we will know then how the 1796 2.5 USD NS will grade.

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