SBP2023年3月#1-Sydney F. Martin集藏III
Undated (1659) Maryland Lord Baltimore Denarium. W-1000, Breen-76. Rarity-7-. VF-35 (PCGS).An extraordinary specimen of this preeminent American rarity, one of only two extant that doesnt bear witness to an earthen provenance. Very attractive medium brown with lighter brown devices, a bit more mahogany on the reverse than obverse. Perfectly centered on both sides and fully detailed, with just light, even wear apparent. Some old verdigris clings to the legends, very minor on the obverse, a bit more significant on the reverse in DENARIVM and the rightmost portion of the crown. The surfaces are hard and smooth, with a glass revealing only the most trivial granularity on the obverse. The color is nice, and the eye appeal is very positive on both sides.<p><p>We recorded eight known examples (seven confirmed) when we last offered an example of this rarity in 2007. At that time, a specimen found with a metal detector near the mouth of the Rappahannock River, graded Very Good, brought $41,400. Two more have been discovered since: a very low grade grounder discovered in an English collection ca. 2018 (sold at Heritage as NGC VG Details in September 2019) and this example, which has never before been offered at auction.<p><p>The Maryland coinage occupies an important space on the timeline of American colonial issues, following only the first few types of Massachusetts silver coins (namely the NEs and the Willows) among the very earliest struck for exclusive circulation in what became the United States. Though "colonial" and "copper" have become almost synonymous among modern enthusiasts of the series, all later copper issues for America can look to this extremely rare emission as their forerunner: the first copper coin ever struck for North America. Were this coin more common, it would maintain a top-shelf level of fame and desirability, and be sought by all who collect the coppers of the American colonies and later Republic. As elusive as this type is, however, it is but little known and hardly ever available for sale. <p><p>None was in the multi-generational Maryland-focused Garrett Collection, nor was one present in the multi-generational Norweb Collection, though both contained otherwise complete sets of Maryland coins (not to mention Brasher doubloons, Chalmers Rings shillings, and other similarly rare type coins). The Parmelee-Ford coin went 114 years between auction offerings, then about a dozen between its purchase by Don Partrick and its 2015 sale within sight of $200,000. Every other example known (and thus every other example sold at auction) has been found in the ground and bears the tell-tale evidence of a dug provenance. <p><p>This example has never been sold at auction, having been discovered in England in 2008 or 2009 and then sold privately. Its discovery, along with two others in recent years, appears to bring the population to either 10 or 11.<p><p>1.The Mickley-Bushnell-Parmelee-Boyd-Ford-Partrick coin, whose full provenance stretches back to England before 1819. Last sold in 2015 as NGC MS-62 BN.<p>2.This example.<p>3.The Roper-Partrick coin, discovered with a metal detector in southern Maryland in 1977. Sold in 2021 as NGC EF Details, Environmental Damage.<p>4.Boston Museum of Fine Arts. Unseen by the cataloger, described as holed and low grade by Edgar Adams. Impounded.<p>5.Smithsonian Institution. Dug, worn, and corroded. Early provenance unknown, but from the Mint Cabinet in 1923. Weight 56.8 grains. Impounded.<p>6.A duplicate in the Smithsonian Institution. Grade similar to number 5. Given to the Smithsonian by Baltimore dealer Thomas Warfield in 1965 with note "found in Maryland in recent years." Weight 50.0 grains. Impounded.<p>7.St. Marys County Historical Society, Maryland. Dug, worn, and corroded. Dug in southern Maryland. Impounded.<p>8.Stacks, August 2007, lot 213, Dug in Middlesex County, Virginia. Dug, worn, and corroded. Brought $41,400 in 2007.<p>9.Heritage, September 2019, lot 4485. Dug, worn, and corroded. Discovered in England ca. 2018.<p>10."Private collection." Unseen by the cataloger. Unconfirmed and probably a duplicate listing. <p><p><p>Thus, only five are confirmed in private hands and all but two examples out of the entire population are dug. Of the three whose ground locations are known, one was found in Virginia and two were found in southern Maryland. The second Smithsonian coin also has a "found in Maryland" provenance. Aside from the Ford coin, all show significant wear, though the dug Roper coin shows excellent pre-burial sharpness. The fact that so many are worn, and that nearly one-half of those known have ground provenance to the area around the Calvert colony at St. Marys, serves as vivid evidence that these coins were not patterns, but actual circulating copper coins that indeed made their way to Maryland to serve in commerce. Further, the fact that St. Marys City was all but abandoned by the late 17th century when the capital was moved (a fate similar to what happened to Jamestown, Virginia) strongly suggests that these pieces were struck, circulated, and lost before the dawn of the 18th century. Their status as circulating currency from the first decades of the American experiment makes them far more historically exciting than patterns, English tokens with American references, and other pieces that are more bystanders than historical actors.<p><p>This pieces first ever public appearance is a noteworthy opportunity for anyone assembling a world-class cabinet of important American rarities.PCGS# 29.PCGS Population: 1, none finer.From the Sydney F. Martin Collection. Earlier ex England, via Julian Leidman; John Agre and Dave Wnuck (Coin Rarities Online), July 2009.