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Did you know that Stack’s Bowers own Greg Roberts, President and CEO of Spectrum Group International was honored by the PNG for 25 years of support?
Put your numismatic knowledge to the test and see if you can name that place! Check out next week’s eNewsletter for the answer. Can’t wait until next week? Visit Stack’s Bowers on Facebook or Twitter now for the answer!

Written by Harvey G. Stack, Senior Numismatic Consultant

The Make Up of the Milton A. Holmes Collection

The collection of Milton A. Holmes was offered by Stack’s at public auction March 5-8, 1960 in six sessions! The collection was very diverse and presented a "treasure trove" for collectors trying to add choice and rare coins to their collections. Stack’s received mail bids from all over the world and there was bidding by phone when callers could get through -- remember this was 1960 when phones were not as plentiful as they are today. The auction room for each session attracted standing room only audiences of collectors, dealers and representatives; the huge response showed what a rare opportunity this was.

By Kent Ponterio, Senior Numismatist and Consignment Director, World & Ancient Coins and Chris Chatigny, Cataloger

There seems to be no shortage of incredible highlights for our approaching Stack’s Bowers and Ponterio January New York International coin show and auction. To date we have featured the Pattern Grano and Half Grano, and the unique 1755 Nuevo Reino “Milled” 8 Escudos. To continue our streak of amazing Spanish Colonial rarities, this week we preview a coin which may not visually conform to a coin’s standard dimensions, but nonetheless stands as a true numismatic rarity.
Do you have a question about anything numismatic? Want to know what’s going on here at Stack’s Bowers Galleries? If so, send your inquiries to [email protected] and get a response to your important questions from our team of experts!

By James Matthews, Senior Numismatist and Consignment Director, U.S. Coins

The first 1802 half dime to sell at public auction is believed to be the William A. Lilliendahl Collection specimen sold in December 1863. At that time the piece was described as the finest of the three known specimens, although Harold P. Newlin noted the coin was in only "Very Good condition". It sold for $340, a record price that stood for a generation until Newlin's own finer specimen of this rarity was sold at auction. In comparison, one of the finest known 1794 silver dollars brought a comparable $285 in another 1863 auction, confirming the nascent American numismatists already had a firm grasp on the true rarity of the 1802 half dime. The original mintage is believed to be only 3,060 pieces, and these small silver coins suffered more than the usual indignities of circulation; they simply did not survive intact.

By Matt Quinn, Assistant Director of Currency

Stack’s Bowers and Ponterio is pleased to present a rare Angola Pick 54 1920 dated 50 Escudos note in our upcoming January auction to be held in conjunction with the New York International Numismatic Convention. The very large format note is among the most important offerings in the sale and is one we have never seen before. It is from the "Porto" series of 1920 where the denominations are interestingly the lowly 10, 20, 50 Centavos and then this high 50 Escudos denomination. Angola was one of the first Portuguese overseas territories to have notes circulating under the Banco Nacional Ultramarino, an institution established during 1864 in Lisbon. Most notes of this issuer were produced by London printing companies making this Portuguese printed type all the more important.

Written by Q. David Bowers, Chairman Emeritus

If you are a “gold bug,” which I have never been, then you may have a tear in your eye as the price of bullion today in December 2013 is less than it has been in recent times. It was not unusual a year ago to have certain dealers and others sell gold in quantity, predicting a price of $5,000 per ounce in the near future. Indeed, at a gathering at a major convention, a program of this type was given, and the audience was asked to show their hands as to believed such a prediction would come true. The majority did.