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White Plains Coin Show Report

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White Plains was pretty busy today. As is usual for the April show, it was downstairs and had about 100 dealers, of which about 20 were stamp dealers. Floor traffic was pretty busy throughout the morning. Interestingly, Arnold Saslow (from West Orange) was there for the first time. He said he had been encouraged to do the show and was having a busy time. (Sounds like he might come back.) The supply dealer wasn't there today, either. (I hope they're OK).


There were a lot of Morgans around, as usual (including a dealer who had cases of slabbed toned Morgans), as well as lots of Classic Commemms (including a dealer or two who stocked them exclusively). No motto Coronet gold was in short supply, as usual, but I saw several more early Seated Liberty coins than I'm used to. Daddy dollars were out in force, including from Miller's Mint, who had a dozen! (all but two in SEGS slabs, though); I must have seen about 15 more around the floor, slabbed and raw.


The high point for me was when Don Hosier let me hold a Scott Restrike Confederate Half in ICG MS-63! For those who don't know the story, these were minted in 1879 by coin dealer J.W. Scott. He used the original die to make 500 'coins', using genuine 1861 halves as the planchets, with the reverse ground for the Confederate side. (Scott also made 500 tokens in white metal using the Confederate die.)


Jon from Scarsdale Coin had several show specials, including 5 2004 nickels for a quarter and Michigan quarters for 25 cents. (A very nice treat!) He and I chatted for a few minutes about why the White Plains show wasn't more successful.


I saw several slabbed Seated Dollars in VF-AU, but a couple of them were "too white", a few of them were toned ugly and one of them I chickened out on! I was also pleased to see three or four 1838-O dimes. New World Rarities had an 1848-C half eagle in NGC VG-10 marked "cheap"! (Otherwise, C- and D-mint gold was thin on the ground.) I did see a Bechtler half eagle, though.


All-in-all, a good, busy show!


(Tomorrow - Parsippany!)

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Well, if you really want to know, it was an 1843 in a Blue-label PCGS AU-50 slab. The dealer wanted $575 (the sticker on the slab said $645). Bid is $495 and Trends is $600.


The coin was toned an even medium battleship gray - not too dark, not too light and no blotches! Ordinarily, I would have jumped on it!


But. . .


In the space between the pole and Liberty's wrist, there was a small (I mean small, I had to use a 5x glass to see it clearly) spot that was a bright iridescent green! There was a small 'lump' under the green, but I couldn't tell if the lump was 'in' the surface of the coin or 'on' the surface of the coin. The green color didn't look like regular toning - I have some Seated Liberty coins that have some blue-green toning on them and this green stuff was "thicker" than regualr toning.


It didn't look like PVC - it didn't have the 'slimy' look to it. I discussed the coin with a friendly dealer (not the owner of the coin) who thought it might have a small piece of particulate matter that had gotten on the coin and then toned.


Why did I chicken out? Well, I was concerned that the green spot might grow to become truly visible to the naked eye - what if it hadn't been there before the coin was slabbed, but had appeared following slabbing? Also, I know how I am and I was afraid that if I bought the coin, then every time I looked at it, all I would be able to focus on would be the green spot!


I can live with blotchy toning (sort of, if it's not too bad), but I was afraid to try to live with a green spot!


Was I being too paranoid? Please let me know what you think - of the coin, not whether I'm paranoid - I was in the Strategic Air Command for five years, of course I'm paranoid!!

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Offer the guy $550 + shipping/insurance and don't worry about the particulate. Once you get the coin, you can probably get PCGS to take that particulate off with a toothpick or whatever. Or, you can simply do it yourself if you're confident that the coin will reslab at the same grade or better by PCGS.


The guy at PCGS to contact about alleged problem coins in their holders is Charlie Kahler. Tell him your concern and see what he'll do about it.


A nice, original-looking Seated coin is not to be taken lightly.



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Interestingly, I went to the Clifton, NJ coin show today and saw the same 1843 PCGS-50 seated dollar again!


I'm not sure if the same dealer had it today (although I think it was the same guy), but this time the sticker on the coin said $695 and he offered it to me for $600. (Bid and Trends are the same now as they were in April, so he's asking $25 more for the coin than he did then.)


The green spot between Liberty's arm and pole was still there (which is how I recognized the coin), but today it seemed to me to be slightly less bright green. Reassuringly, the spot hadn't grown in the six months since I had seen the coin last.


I suspect that if the same dealer still owns that otherwise attractive coin, I'm not the only prospective buyer who's been scared off by that green spot.

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"scared off by that green spot."



Reminds me of the movie "The Andromida Strain", whereby a growing green spot kills off an entire town. 893whatthe.gif





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