Saturday, February 22, 2014

Rick’s Pedigree Coins – 1903 $20 Liberty - The Champagne Lanson Bonnet Vineyard Collection


The Champagne Lanson Bonnet Vineyard Collection – In the eastern village of Les Riceys, France, a vineyard worker was busy remolding a former grape-drying facility when he accidentally dislodged a hidden treasure of US gold coins from the attic above his head. While it is unknown how the treasure found its’ way to the attic, the building was once owned by a wine producer who did business with the US and England in the 1930’s. In total, the Lanson Bonnet find consisted of 497 US gold coins minted between 1851-1928 with an estimated value of $1 million.

 
Bonhams brought the coins to auction in Los Angeles on June 3, 2013. Lanson BCC Group announced that half of the proceeds from the auction will go to the individual who discovered the coins in the house. The vineyard has described him as a modest employee of the Lanson firm, who brought the Collection to the attention of the company not knowing that he would be entitled to half of the proceeds under French law. According to the vineyard, this anonymous individual will now be able to buy or build a house for his family with the auction proceeds. Information source: Bonhams press release, January 25, 2013.




 

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Rick’s Pedigree Coins – Fitzgerald Collection – Don’t forget the casino chips!


I think one of the most beautiful and exciting sets to collect is the Fitzgerald Collection.  The silver dollars have exceptional eye-appeal for “stashed” coins and the original owner has a fascinating life story. 

Lincoln Fitzgerald started his gambling career by running the Chesterfield Club for the Purple Gang in Detroit.  The Purple gang was one of the most ruthless mobster organizations of the time period.  No one stacked up to these guys when it came to murders and kidnappings.  It has been reported that they were the “hit team” in the Chicago St. Valentine’s day massacre.  In high profile kidnappings, their name has been mentioned in the Lindberg baby case, John Labatt (brewing) kidnapping and plans to kidnap Edsel Ford. 
 
Shown here is a set of casino chips used at the Chesterfield Club (Detroit – Purple Gang illegal casino) when Lincoln Fitzgerald managed the club:

 
 
(Cost of a original/authentic set of Chesterfield Club gambling chips = $75 - $100 mas o menos)
 
 
Towards the end of Lincoln’s career in the gaming industry, he built and opened Fitzgerald’s Casino & Hotel in Reno.  Shown below is an authentic set of chips used at the casino when it opened.
 
 
 
(Cost of original/authentic Fitzgerald gambling chips = $100 mas o menos)
 
So if you are a Fitzgerald collector, “don’t forget the chips” because they really balance out your collection. 
 

Friday, February 14, 2014

Rick’s Pedigree Coins – Amazon - Rick’s Legacy “Pedigree & Hoard / Coins & Currency”


Rick’s Legacy “Pedigree & Hoard / Coins & Currency” is now available on Amazon.  I have met the listing person and he is a customer conscious, quality person that is very easy to work with.  The website is:

 
The books available are designated as “First Printing”.  If you want a signed copy, be sure to tell the seller before you purchase the book so he can make arrangements to have your book signed.  Also, the first 25 printed were signed and numbered.  The numbered books are available by request only.  They are limited and there are approximately 10 left.  If you want one of the 1st 25 signed & numbered, be sure to request those special books before you buy to insure availability.  There may be a day or 2 added to shipping time to fill the request.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Rick’s Pedigree Coins - Nevada Silver Collection


The Nevada Silver Collection consists of high grade Walking Liberty half dollars of which most have exceptional eye-appeal.  Pictures I have seen of half dollars from this collection fall short in doing justice to the beauty of the coins.  Once viewed in hand, the beauty and definition of the coins exceed what photographs show.  Other coins (Mercury dimes, Morgan dollars, etc.) seem to receive fair representation when photographed, but the Walking Liberty in the Nevada Silver Collection is evasive to having a good photograph taken.

For a long time, the origination and story of this collection remained a mystery to the collector.  There was speculation that it was associated with the Binion Hoard.  After all, NGC was the authenticating numismatic agency and it did have the familiar cowboy label used on silver dollars from the Binion Hoard.  But nothing concrete could be found to validate that suspicion.  Then, on December 5, 2012, Michael Webster wrote in the LA National Security Examiner in his article “Sin City the death of Ted Binion”, in part about the hoard:

“A special tag and designation was created by NGC to make these coins stand out as coins with a pedigree.  In addition to the special tagging, the silver dollars were marked with the words Binion Collection and the half dollars were marked with the words Nevada Silver Collection.”

What is puzzling about this revelation is that Spectrum Numismatic International purchased the Binion Hoard and assigned the marketing rites for the hoard to Goldline International, Inc.  However, in Goldline’s marketing of the Nevada Silver Collection they would not admit that the half dollars were from the Binion Hoard but claimed, “Their story, their owner, and even the location of the sale of these coins all remain unknown”.  So why the deversion tactics by Goldline?  Who knows, but it seems to follow the trend that many coin promoters have in trying to keep the pedigree originations obscure. 
 
An NGC popuplation report for this collection is not available so it is impossible to define a set or establish a rarity value.  This may be a blessing for the collector because most coins are sold at normal market value for like coins without a pedigree.  This makes the Nevada Silver Collection an economical set to put together or for the casual collector to acquire for historical value.  And the exceptional eye-appeal of one of the most beautiful coins minted is a bonus.  


Saturday, February 8, 2014

Rick’s Pedigree Coins – Ebay - Rick’s Legacy “Pedigree & Hoard / Coins & Currency”


Rick’s Legacy “Pedigree & Hoard / Coins & Currency” is now available on Ebay.  And as Amazon, I know the listing person and he is a 5 Star Ebay Seller that is easy to work with in your transactions.  The seller ID is:  60-inch . 
 
The books available are designated as “First Printing”.  If you want a signed copy, be sure to tell the seller before you purchase the book so he can make arrangements to have your book signed.  Also, the first 25 printed were signed and numbered.  The numbered books are available by request only.  They are limited and there are approximately 10 left.  If you want one of the 1st 25 signed & numbered, be sure to request those special books before you buy to insure availability.  There may be a day or 2 added to shipping time to fill the request.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Rick’s Pedigree Coins – Military Payment Certificates


Military Payment Certificate – The MPC was a form of currency used to pay U.S. military personnel in certain foreign countries from 1946 until 1973.  The currency was colorful with many eye-catching designs.  In total, there were 94 unique notes over the 28 years of service.  
 
Shown here is a series 472 note that was in use between March 22, 1948 until June 20, 1951.  Countries of primary use were:  Austria, Belgium, England, France, Germany,
Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Japan, Korea, Morocco, Philippines, Ryukyus, Scotland, Trieste and Yugoslavia.






Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Rick’s Pedigree Coins – Great Collections - Rick’s Legacy “Pedigree & Hoard / Coins & Currency”


I am happy to announce that Great Collections will be a national distributor for Rick’s Legacy “Pedigree & Hoard / Coins & Currency”.  Great Collections is one of the top 3 auction sites on the Internet for coins and related products.  Their website is:


Give them a try.  I have purchased many coins from them and they ship fast.  The Champagne Lanson Bonnet Vineyard Collection $20 St. Gaudens gold piece illustrated in my book was acquired from Great Collections.

Shipping to Great Collections has started so they should have them available in about a week.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Rick’s Pedigree Coins – 1921 Morgan in the Binion Collection


The 1921 Morgan silver dollars in the Binion Collection has always been interesting to me.

Before I talk about this coin, a word about NGC’s grading of the Binion hoard:

“Grading: NGC labeled Binion coins fall into 3 grading categories. The first category are coins that have been authenticated as being from the hoard and received “hard” grades. Graded coins that have a “hard” grade are like MS63 or AU55. In other words a specific and defined grade. The second category are coins that are authenticated and receive “soft” grades. Examples of soft grades are “Uncirculated” or “Brilliant Uncirculated”. No numeric grade is assigned. Coins in this group are less desirable than “hard” graded coins. And the third category are coins that have been authenticated as from the Binion hoard, but have received no grade. Many difficult to find dated coins fall into this category. While they are the least desirable to the refined collector, in many cases the rarity of the date/mintmark still create a market premium.”

 Now the 1921 Morgan silver dollar is really a rare item, but does not seem to bring the premium that you would expect.  The NGC census report shows a “hard graded” population of only 55 regular Binion Morgans and a population of 12 “Wide Reeds” 1921 Binion Morgans.  You would think that with such a low population that this coin would be sold at a hefty premium; however, relative to the low availability it still sells for a very economical price.  I am not sure it the Binion collector is not aware of the rarity or if the over-all general population of 1921 Morgans just turn the collector off on this coin.  Whatever the reason, if someone had the interest they could easily acquire and corner the market on this Binion at a low buy-in price.