Yes, fortunes have been made on Prooflike dollars. Don't you wish you knew how desirable they would become before they did. I have a couple of stories I would like to recount that involve very high profits made on prooflike dollars by people (myself included) who were ignorant at the time they bought them, and did wonderfully on them from an investment standpoint.
My first recollection involved myself and a local coin dealer. I had just graduated from high school in the early 70's. I was working a good paying factory job and living with my parents. Needless to say, I had a fair amount of disposable income. One day, I was in a local coin shop just looking around. I had some silver bullion that I had inherited that I wanted to sell. The gentleman working there paid me for the silver and proceeded to inquire as to what I was going to do with the money. When I told him I was going to buy a CD, he told me he had a better investment for me. Long story short, I walked out with a roll of 1884-O silver dollars. Took them to the bank, threw them in the safety deposit box and forgot them.
The years went by and I actually started collecting Morgans. Amazingly, I had completely forgotten about this roll I had bought. In the late 80's I got married, so my new wife and I went to the bank to put her name on the box. We opened it up to get some CD's I had in it. Lo and behold, there was that roll of 84-O's. I popped the lid off the container and about went through the roof when I saw that the entire roll was DMPL's and blazing cameos to boot. Needless to say, they were shipped off for grading and slabbing. All 20 came back 64 and 65 DMPL. I sold them all in one shot to a local dealer for a little over $8,000.00. This from a roll that I think I paid less than $300.00 for.
Nice surprise, Huh. But that doesn't hold a candle to the experience of a gentleman that I met in my hometown. I was at a flea market one day and stopped by the table of an elderly gentleman who along with some crafts had several raw dollars for sale. They were both blazing high-grade cameo DMPL's. The price was obnoxious and I paid it. We spent some time talking about coins and he expressed some interest in a couple of $10 Indians that I owned. The next day I stopped by his house. He told me he wanted the Indians but didn't want to spend cash for them. He offered to work out a trade for some nice Morgans. I said I'd look.
He stepped into the bedroom and came back with five of those long blue boxes that held the old Capitol Plastic holders. I started looking through them. Every coin was a high grade DMPL Cameo! And I mean some tough finds. 78's, later P mints, O mints, everything! I asked him where he found these.
He told me that in the late 50's and early 60's, he and his wife weren't very well to do. They had 2 children and he was a plumber. He liked silver dollars because they were big and pretty. He and his wife would go to the bank on payday, buy a bag of dollars, spend Saturday night going through the bag and picking out the prettiest dollar. On Monday morning, his wife would take the bag back to the bank. The bank ran them through the counter and gave her $999.00 back. He told me it was a cheap passtime, and if things got tough, they could always spend them. They then paid their bills for the week and did it again the next weekend. He said they did this for several years and had about 200-250 dollars. I asked him why he picked the prooflikes. His response was "because my wife thought they were the prettiest ones." Needless to say, this couple retired wealthy because they picked the pretty ones.
Oh, if I just had a time machine!!!!!!!