Roger Burdette's Saint Gaudens Double Eagles Book
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And before they formed Goldberg Auctions they either owned or were the principal partners of Superior Galleries which was one of the premier auction houses.  Not quite on the level of Heritage but close.  Once the Goldbergs left Superior it started going downhill and I believe disappeared in the early 90's. 

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13 minutes ago, Conder101 said:

And before they formed Goldberg Auctions they either owned or were the principal partners of Superior Galleries which was one of the premier auction houses.  Not quite on the level of Heritage but close.  Once the Goldbergs left Superior it started going downhill and I believe disappeared in the early 90's. 

Yes, I saw that name a few times along with Parmount (I think David Akers worked there).

It's fascinating to read about the gold dealers and collectors from the 1920's, 1930's, and 1940's.  Israel Switt's jewelry shop is still around I think....alot of the coin collectors like Mehl and FCC Boyd had associates or themselves active in the 1950's-1970's.

Do Heritage, Legend, or Great Collections trace their lineage to any of the older gold dealers as far as you know ?  Clearly, Stacks is still around from 1937.

Would be interested to read a book -- or maybe an internet posting, more likely -- tracing the creation and dissolution of all those classic firms including which of today's firms they may have morphed into today.

Edited by GoldFinger1969
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An earlier question mentioned gold licenses, so here's a Treasury telegram about two types. Don't expect clarity. Things were still confused in October 1933.

19331012 Gold license procedures sm.jpg

Edited by RWB
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The point of licenses TGL-4 and TGL-4A was that the holder could acquire gold as used, scrap or unrefined material and had to keep it in that form until deposited at a Mint or Assay Office. This was specifically intended to prevent melting gold coins (foreign or domestic) and casting into bars, or mixing scrap gold with melted coin to imitate a bar of scrap. This was in response to smuggling of US gold into Canada as scrap bars. It also covered Treasury's policy of buying gold scrap at the daily market fix, and legal tender coins at face value.

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4 hours ago, GoldFinger1969 said:

Roger, when did gold get revalued up to $35/oz. ?

The official date was January 31, 1934. That's when it became law versus Treasury's floating buying price.

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On 5/23/2020 at 10:24 AM, GoldFinger1969 said:

Yes, I saw that name a few times along with Parmount (I think David Akers worked there).

It's fascinating to read about the gold dealers and collectors from the 1920's, 1930's, and 1940's.  Israel Switt's jewelry shop is still around I think....alot of the coin collectors like Mehl and FCC Boyd had associates or themselves active in the 1950's-1970's.

Do Heritage, Legend, or Great Collections trace their lineage to any of the older gold dealers as far as you know ?  Clearly, Stacks is still around from 1937.

Would be interested to read a book -- or maybe an internet posting, more likely -- tracing the creation and dissolution of all those classic firms including which of today's firms they may have morphed into today.

B. Max Mehl, who was my grandmother’s uncle, was a dealer, not a collector.

To my knowledge, Heritage, formed by Steve Ivy and Jim Halperin, has no ties to “older gold” (or other) dealers.

 

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1 hour ago, MarkFeld said:

B. Max Mehl, who was my grandmother’s uncle, was a dealer, not a collector.

To my knowledge, Heritage, formed by Steve Ivy and Jim Halperin, has no ties to “older gold” (or other) dealers.

 

Thanks Mark....that's interesting because I guess I just assumed that every dealer, even if they look at it as a business, have to have some emotional attachment to the hobby and "collect" at least SOME coins. 

But maybe not. xD

I guess when you see all the coins passing through your inventory, maybe it's not as special to those of us who are strictly collectors.

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14 hours ago, RWB said:

The point of licenses TGL-4 and TGL-4A was that the holder could acquire gold as used, scrap or unrefined material and had to keep it in that form until deposited at a Mint or Assay Office. This was specifically intended to prevent melting gold coins (foreign or domestic) and casting into bars, or mixing scrap gold with melted coin to imitate a bar of scrap. This was in response to smuggling of US gold into Canada as scrap bars. It also covered Treasury's policy of buying gold scrap at the daily market fix, and legal tender coins at face value.

Wait a second.....after gold was raised to $35/oz., the smuggling would have ended, right ?  So that wouldn't have been a factor.

And regardless of the price of gold, what does the Treasury care if a dealer (or even a non-dealer) is melting used gold, scrap, coins, or bars ?  As long as smuggling has stopped -- which presumably it has, since the domestic price is now higher -- would they have cared what the few dealers or licensees did with various forms of gold ?

They just wanted to prevent hoarding and export -- which reduced the domestic stock and by implication, the money supply.

Edited by GoldFinger1969
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6 hours ago, GoldFinger1969 said:

Thanks Mark....that's interesting because I guess I just assumed that every dealer, even if they look at it as a business, have to have some emotional attachment to the hobby and "collect" at least SOME coins. 

But maybe not. xD

I guess when you see all the coins passing through your inventory, maybe it's not as special to those of us who are strictly collectors.

Sure thing. I’m not saying he didn’t collect - I don’t know if he did. But either way, he wasn’t known as a collector, but rather, as a dealer.

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RE: "Wait a second.....after gold was raised to $35/oz., the smuggling would have ended, right ?  So that wouldn't have been a factor."

Treasury was clear that US coins were not to be melted - including after the Act of January 31, 1934. Coins and bars made from coin gold (or suspected to be) were paid for at their old legal tender value. The assumption by Treasury was that if US coins were melted in Mexico and imported to the US, that they had been originally exported as speculation/hording and not for legitimate commercial purposes. This position helped preserve many US gold coins overseas where they could be traded at bullion value.

USSS (RG 87) files include a number of investigations related to this.

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Hi guys!  Just found this thread (thanks to an email from Roger) and would like to add kudos to the phenomenon that is Roger's Book!  I was years into collecting Saint Gauden's Double Eagle (SGDE) die varieties (for which there were scant published resources available) when Heritage sent me an early copy.  Best present I ever got!  Suffice it to say, this was the long needed comprehensive reference to elevate the discussion of this previously under studied and often misunderstood series.  Roger's accomplishment is nothing short of awesome!

Gold coins generally suffer in die variety discussion circles as they are intrinsically as well as numismatically expensive for many collectors to consider beyond type acquisition.  Just read the intro to the "gold" section of the Volume II Cherrypicker's guide if you don't believe me!  Thanks to Roger that may change.  You may note from the book that many of the later so-called "common" date Saints have interesting associated die varieties which are quite scarce by comparison with their common brethren.  The 1922, (less common 1922 S), 1923, 1924, 1925, 1926, and 1928 all fall into this category.  Along with the 09/08 and some re-punched mintmarks from the early years, these coins make up an affordable subset of interesting and possibly rare SGDE's available at prices close to "melt".  Since collecting this series in traditional "date/mint-mark" fashion is not practical for most of us, it's nice to have alternatives, both affordable and rare, from this series upon which to focus one's collecting attention.  Check out the Cherrypicker's Guide and NGC's Variety Plus page (https://www.ngccoin.com/variety-plus/united-states/gold-double-eagles/saint-gaudens-20-1907-1933/?page=1) for some details and illustrations.  A new version of Volume II of TCPG is due out before the end of the year, and I have it on good authority that some new SGDE varieties will most likely be added, mainly from Roger's book! 

Not sure ANA's 2020 Pittsburgh convention is going to come off in August due to Covid 19, but I have requested to give a "Money Talks" review of  SGDE varieties at the convention.  Will post an update if it looks like it is going to happen.

 

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Looking forward to the Money Talks presentation - if ANA happens this year.

Thanks for the kind remarks. I hope the book will encourage others to uncover more double eagle varieties.

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6 hours ago, rajosco said:

Not sure ANA's 2020 Pittsburgh convention is going to come off in August due to Covid 19, but I have requested to give a "Money Talks" review of  SGDE varieties at the convention.  Will post an update if it looks like it is going to happen.

Welcome, Raj, glad to hear from you.  Yes, Roger deserves major kudos for his spectacular book on Saint-Gaudens Double Eagles.

I'm not into die varieties (yet) myself -- I'm still learning the basics and learning other things surrounding Saints -- but I would have interest in your talk.  I'm not sure if I can get out to ANA Pittsburgh, so hopefully you can post the PowerPoint presentation and any slides here or somewhere if it's not available at the ANA website.

And I do agree with you...the die varieties among Saints ARE very interesting and a nice thing to consider collecting, beyond the major types.

Have you read/finished Roger's book cover-to-cover ?  Took me a bit over a month.

Edited by GoldFinger1969
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In Bowers' book on Double Eagles his year-by-year Gold/Silver Highlights (p. 150) mentions that the Free Silver movement in 1877 spooked Europeans and that this was what led to the large importaion of Liberty and Saint coins to European banks in the decades to follow.

Agree ?

 

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Thanks Roger and Goldfimger (one of my favorite movies by the way!)  I did read most of Roger's book a year or two ago when I first received it, but given my pre-existing varieties fixation, I couldn't help but focus on those elements for which I had been most hungry for information for such a long time.  My very first Saint, ehat we used to call an "unc" 1924, (bought when I was teenager in 1969 for about $80) on which I noticed some odd obverse details turned out to be a doubled die obverse variety.  Not until the early 2000's did I stumble across any documented evidence of this particular anomaly, and that was on the internet.  Until Roger's book came out, I don't believe anyone else had ever documented it in print!  Certainly neither Dave Akers, Q. David Bowers, or Walter Breen made any mention of it in their reference books that I have in my library, and it has not appeared in five editions of the Cherrypicker's guide (though I am told it will in the sixth!).  So on the matter of  Die Varieties, Roger's book is a revelation and certainly unprecedented.  Much as I love Q. David Bowers' and  others for their writings, Roger's book is to Saint Gaudens Double Eagles what the "New Horizons" space craft was to Pluto!  Our first long awaited extensive "up close" look at a fascinating coin series.

If I am able to give my talk it will be recorded no doubt, and in any case I will find some means to disseminate the information to interested collectors.  If you are really curious, here is a link to a Newman Numismatic portal David Lisot video where I briefly discuss a "find" at the ANA convention this February in Atlanta. (From 36.37 Minutes to 39.10.)  By the way, Davids videos are highly informative and the whole selection spanning decades is available for free on the portal!  

 https://nnp.wustl.edu/library/book/581517 

  

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28 minutes ago, GoldFinger1969 said:

In Bowers' book on Double Eagles his year-by-year Gold/Silver Highlights (p. 150) mentions that the Free Silver movement in 1877 spooked Europeans and that this was what led to the large importation of Liberty and Saint coins to European banks in the decades to follow.

Agree ?

 

No. Use of gold coins or bars in international trade depended largely on the gold point, and thus the ability of banks, brokers and others to profit from the transaction. This was also separate from simply paying for overseas purchases.

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13 minutes ago, Ross J said:

If I am able to give my talk it will be recorded no doubt, and in any case I will find some means to disseminate the information to interested collectors.  If you are really curious, here is a link to a Newman Numismatic portal David Lisot video where I briefly discuss a "find" at the ANA convention this February in Atlanta. (From 36.37 Minutes to 39.10.)  By the way, Davids videos are highly informative and the whole selection spanning decades is available for free on the portal!  

 https://nnp.wustl.edu/library/book/581517 

  

I guess your name changed, I got a bit confused. xD

Thanks for the heads-up, that portal is fantastic, I'll definitely check it out.  Right now, I am seeing some guy from the U.S. Mint talk about the 1933 Saints but it is taking me forever to watch it as I keep having to run to the bathroom to throw up. xD

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Very Cool!  I will check it out!  Love Astronomy too!  Coin Trivia:  Name the only regular U.S. coin to show a sun disk on both sides!

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The Coinage Act of 1873 reorganized all U.S. coinage operations and functions to improve efficiency, accountability and commercial transactions. For miners and depositors the change from deposit-demand coinage to Federal account coinage caused much confusion, as did schedules of cost-recovery fees. Major changes in the U.S. coincided with German unification, adoption of its gold exchange standard, and consequent release of large amounts of silver coin into bullion markets. Silver producers world wide were searching for markets.

The U.S.' last gasp of deposit-demand coinage was the Trade dollar which, oddly, was part of the 1873 reform. This was the only way silver bullion depositors could get their metal made into coins (Trade dollars) which were then supposed to be exported into Asian markets. This arrangement gave U.S. silver producers an immense financial advantage since their bullion cost was only that of mining, and the new Trade dollars were bid at a premium over Mexican Pesos.

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7 hours ago, Ross J said:

That must be the Greg Weinman video (counsel for the Mint).  I was at that talk!  He is a really nice guy.

Yup, that's him.  I take it you live in PA ?  Or maybe you just travelled there.

He'd be alot nicer if he lobbied his associates at the Mint to return the 10 1933 Saints to the Langbords. xD I don't think he was there when they were seized or during the trial....but he came from the IRS and is now one of their defenders. 

And his assertions in his presentation are presented as FACTS when in fact key points are more likely SPECULATIONS.

I'm going through his talk with Roger's book and other info I have on the 1933's to see where he is on solid ground and where he is making it up.  I'll say one thing...these guys at the Mint keep saying the 10 coins were "stolen" which is really annoying bordering on the "do you want to get punched ?" annoyance.  The coins weren't STOLEN, they got out somewhere via an exchange in either early-1933 or maybe as late as 1937 once it was apparent that all coins were to be melted (I'm not sure about the necessarily illegality of doing an exchange at that late date if you were a Mint employee and maybe were given permission by a higher-up).

The Mint now says that the 10 won't be destroyed because they are "national treasures."  Well, we wouldn't have these national treasures if not for Israel Switt.  The Mint was arrogant and brazen with the Farouk/Fenton coin and the've acted the same way with the Switt-Langbord 10.

Rant off....xD

 

Edited by GoldFinger1969
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21 hours ago, RWB said:

No. Use of gold coins or bars in international trade depended largely on the gold point, and thus the ability of banks, brokers and others to profit from the transaction. This was also separate from simply paying for overseas purchases.

But you don't think the possibility of debts or trade being settled in silver led Europeans to accelerate shipments/payments in gold ?

Edited by GoldFinger1969
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Silver was only used for international settlements when the receiving country was on a silver standard - China, India (well-not entirely), Spain, Vietnam, etc.

The fallacy of the "Free Silver" argument was presumption that some sort of natural relationship existed between silver and gold. The real point that should have gotten attention was uniformity/equivalence of all legal tender monetary units. For commercial expansion and international trade to grow, the use of "money of account" versus "specie" had to be simplified. (See The Big Problem of Small Change for insights from an earlier era.) A Franc, Mark, Dollar, Pound and other units had to have exactly the same commercial/commodity value for robust trade. For example, the "dollar" was the United States' name for its monetary unit. But US Customs Agents only accepted gold in payment of duties -- and even then, gold notes were demanded and preferred even over physical new gold coin or Mint-certified fine bars. Currency that said "Legal tender for all debts, public and private" did not really mean "ALL" just "SOME - MAYBE - WE'RE NOT REALLY SURE." How can companies operate efficiently if "a dollar" is not "a dollar" -- and never try to pay a Customs bill in "silver dollars".....? !

This was also a severe domestic problem - a silver dollar was not equal in purchasing power to a gold dollar; and a silver certificate might not result in as much penny candy as a silver dollar, and a gold dollar might get extra candy.

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Question: Why did US Customs Agents accept gold notes in preference to physical new gold coin or Mint-certified fine bars?

Answer: The reason was stability of value.

Agents were personally responsible for transferring their receipts to the Treasury. A Gold Note for $5,000 was worth exactly $5,000 in pure gold. The same face value in double eagles might contain slightly more or less pure gold due to abrasion, mint weight and fineness tolerance or other factors. A US Mint bar of 0.999 fine gold might also be slightly off in weight, and was also off by 0.001 in gold purity.. Further, a Treasury auditor could demand  weight and assay of bars or coins at any time.

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57 minutes ago, RWB said:

Silver was only used for international settlements when the receiving country was on a silver standard - China, India (well-not entirely), Spain, Vietnam, etc.

The fallacy of the "Free Silver" argument was presumption that some sort of natural relationship existed between silver and gold. The real point that should have gotten attention was uniformity/equivalence of all legal tender monetary units. For commercial expansion and international trade to grow, the use of "money of account" versus "specie" had to be simplified. (See The Big Problem of Small Change for insights from an earlier era.) A Franc, Mark, Dollar, Pound and other units had to have exactly the same commercial/commodity value for robust trade. For example, the "dollar" was the United States' name for its monetary unit. But US Customs Agents only accepted gold in payment of duties -- and even then, gold notes were demanded and preferred even over physical new gold coin or Mint-certified fine bars. Currency that said "Legal tender for all debts, public and private" did not really mean "ALL" just "SOME - MAYBE - WE'RE NOT REALLY SURE." How can companies operate efficiently if "a dollar" is not "a dollar" -- and never try to pay a Customs bill in "silver dollars".....? !

This was also a severe domestic problem - a silver dollar was not equal in purchasing power to a gold dollar; and a silver certificate might not result in as much penny candy as a silver dollar, and a gold dollar might get extra candy.

But wasn't some Europeans worried about the United States going to adopt the silver standard, even though in reality it highly unlikely (free silver movement), and increased acquisition of gold in response to the perceived threat of a silver standard?

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