), • Also believing there were six, not five, 1913 Liberty Head nickels, the San Antonio The Light stressed that looking for one in change was futile. The teenager placed the following in his local weekly newspaper, the Arma Record, on Jan. 22, 1920: “I WILL PAY $5 to $25 for a 1913 Liberty Head U S Nickle [sic]; Thousands in circulation. In 1913 the Indian Head nickel (often referred to as a Buffalo nickel) replaced the Liberty and the United States Mint has no record of any Liberties being struck. $99.95. MRS. L. wrote, “I read some time ago that there is a reward for a 1913 nickel without the buffalo. (It currently resides in PCGS capsule number 999999-001.) $24.25. A rare nickel -- a 1913 Liberty Head -- has sold for $4.5 million at a Philadelphia auction. He paid for the same insertion the following week, in the Jan. 29, 1920, issue, but included the admonition, “Buffalo heads not wanted.” He must have believed there were plenty of the 1913 Liberty Heads to be found, even in a small town, as Arma was really small. The request was honored immediately and the San Francisco dies were delivered to the Philadelphia engraving department, for eventual defacement, on Dec. 23, 1912. If you think millions of dollars for a nickel sounds a bit steep, consider this: The coin is reportedly one of only five in existence in the entire world. Mehl boasted, “I plead guilty to being responsible for making this coin so famous, having used it in all of my national advertising for a period of about a quarter of a century…” The cost of the promotions, according to Mehl, was in excess of $1 million. After it became known within the Mint that the 1913 Liberty Head nickels would not be struck for either the general public or collectors, someone in the institution came up with the idea of correcting this ?oversight.? C $94.28. (Feb. 14, 1929, Oklahoma News, Oklahoma City, Okla.), • Mrs. H.E. Dunham’s reported connection with the 1913 Liberty Head nickel came up after the publication of my 2017 feature, an excerpt of which appeared in the July 23, 2017, Numismatic Bibliomania Society’s E-Sylum, www.coinbooks.org/esylum. • So “wild and all-consuming” was the mania that the Times-Picayune related that a friend of theirs would take $10 bills to banks and exchange the notes for coins in the hope of finding a 1913 Liberty Head nickel. Get the best deals on 1913 Uncertified US Buffalo Nickels when you shop the largest online selection at eBay.com. Though not the first to proclaim the 1913 Liberty Head nickel’s rarity, he was undoubtedly the one who spent the most advertising dollars in … This 1913 Century Liberty Head Nickel also has a gigantic price tag. In due course, after several fruitless meetings and attempts to mollify the private company, the Treasury Secretary held one last meeting on Feb. 15; nothing of substance was accomplished then, either, so MacVeagh simply ordered that coinage begin with the latest models and within a few days the first Buffalo nickels were delivered. When Harry E. Kelso, of Arma, Kan., began advertising for the coins, in late January 1920, the ANA convention where Brown would leave his nickel on display was still seven months away; fewer than 20 people had viewed Samuel W. Brown’s nickel at the Dec. 3, 1919, Chicago Coin Club meeting (see Part I in the Sept. 29 issue); and just two of Brown’s now well-known “wanted” ads had made their way into The Numismatist. The famed collector: The more significant of these two items involve William F. Dunham, and apparently led to the flooding of newspaper question-and-answer columns with queries from those who owned 1913 Indian Head nickels and thought they had struck it rich. It is said that all over America, streetcars slowed down and schedules were missed as conductors looked through incoming nickels hoping to find a prized 1913 Liberty Head! Only six.” (Oct. 29, 1937, The Light, San Antonio, Texas. It included such ultra rarities as the aforementioned Class I 1804 Draped Bust silver dollar, the Dexter specimen; the 1822 Capped Bust half eagle; the 1802 Draped Bust half dime; and the 1823 Capped Bust quarter dollar. These included his “profusely illustrated” Star Coin Book: An Encyclopedia of Rare American and Foreign Coins for 50 cents and his The Star Rare Coin Encyclopedia and Premium Catalog (the “Most Complete and Authentic Work of its Kind Published”) for $1. It was usual practice in those days to send dies out from Philadelphia in an unhardened state. The coins first came to the attention of the collector community in 1920 when a former U.S. Mint employee named Samuel Brown attended the American Numismatic Association's annual convention and displayed all five copies there. Will you kindly inform me through your column if this is a fact and where I can send it to obtain the premium?”, Holmes replied that it was not a nickel that was worth a premium but a dime. He received little notice for this because in those days, collectors sometimes looked for coins that had never existed, much like mid-19th century attempts to find an 1815 cent or 1804 half dollar. Get the best deals on 1913 Uncertified US Buffalo Nickels when you shop the largest online selection at eBay.com. Harry Kelso. Some of these cash enticements-always refused by the owner-were mentioned in the Scrapbook. ; Long Island, Kan.; Topeka, Kan.; Wichita, Kan.; Detroit; Lansing, Mich.; Muskegon, Mich.; Port Huron, Mich.; Bismarck, N.D.; Buffalo, N.Y.; Antlers, Okla.; Muskogee, Okla.; Chambersburg, Pa.; Harrisburg, Pa.; Newcastle, Pa.; Wilkes-Barre, Pa.; Salt Lake City, Utah; La Crosse, Wis.; and Cheyenne, Wyo. 2.) Largely through his own promotion, Mehl was known as the person to contact if you had coin queries. Get the best deal for US Liberty Nickels (1883-1913) ... 1893 PROOF LIBERTY HEAD NICKEL PCGS PR-65CAMEO A TRUE JEWEL BLACK & WHITE. Describing Mehl as one of its most successful longtime advertisers, the ad related that Mehl began advertising in The American Weekly in 1927, with “twenty-eight line copy.” The investment, it said, proved profitable, which Mehl could tell because he required readers to write to him. Its diameter was enlarged slightly, permitting thinner planchets and much greater die life. Today, this coin ranks among the most legendary of all in American numismatics. In 1913, a total of five Liberty nickels were minted, under somewhat suspicious circumstances. So no 1913 V nickels should ever have been struck. That is an interesting price for a coin that seems to defy the odds at every turn. The 1913 nickel value ranges from $7 for a well circulated coin to over $460 for the rare 1913-S Type 2 Buffalo nickel in "Uncirculated" condition. The finest of five known 1913 Liberty Head nickels will be put on the auction block Jan. 2, 2007, by Stack. Although coin collecting was alive and well in the United States during the 1860s and 1870s, there was a certain amount of decline towards the latter part of the 19th century. Obtaining a small number of planchets, both proof and uncirculated, the dies were placed in the hydraulic press and used to strike several specimens. Shortly after his Jan. 22, 1920, ad in the Arma Record, Kelso expanded his search to nearby Pittsburg, Pa., a town of around 18,000. The Associated Press reports: Get the best deals for 1913 liberty head nickel at eBay.com. In point of fact, from 1926 until his death in June 1936, Colonel E.H.R. So the quote is puzzling. Prior to 1913 five-cent proofs always had highly polished surfaces and frosted vignettes, very similar to the proof coins of the current time. Starting with his first mail-bid sale in 1906, he was soon selling named collections such as, in no particular order, Granberg, Newcomer, Sears, Ten Eyck, Grinnell, Olsen, and Dunham. So what of the 1913 Liberty Head nickels after the ANA convention in 1920? In “Exchange Chuckles,” a column that cobbled together diverse news items it found to be humorous, the Feb. 8, 1921, Buffalo Morning Express, Buffalo, N.Y., grabbed this from the New York Syracuse Post-Standard: “Salina – I see a 1913 nickel without the Buffalo head is worth $600. Because of the information he provided, the mania will “cease today when it becomes known that the search is practically useless.” (Nov. 3, 1931, Boston Globe, Boston.). The proof nickel dies for 1913 were executed in early November 1912 and it is possible, though unlikely, that sample pieces were struck to test the dies. “As for the 1913 nickel you hear so much about, however, there were only six coins in the entire issue. The modified ad then ran in the Jan. 31 through Feb. 8 issues (there was no Feb. 2 issue). Although Fraser worked on his models for the new nickel throughout 1912, for some unknown reason Philadelphia Mint officials were not kept informed of his progress. I doubt if any of these are still at large.” (June 21, 1929, Salt Lake Telegram, Salt Lake City, Utah. • In May 1923, Smith Coin Dept. The George Walton specimen of the 1913 Liberty Head nickel sold April 25, 2013 at auction in Schaumburg, Ill., for $3,172,500. This individual, thought by some to be Samuel W. Brown, seems to have enlisted the aid of a friend in the engraving department, where the dies and proof planchets would have been kept. The top most expensive and valuable US Liberty Nickels. Legendary coin collector Louis Eliasberg bought his specimen in 1948. However, they are also highly counterfeited. In a recent auction someone bought this coin for over 3 million dollars. The Denver Mint dies were mailed a few days later, on Dec. 9, but did not of course include any dies for nickels. San Francisco is another story entirely, with only 238,000 pieces struck during the last week of December 1912. Ending 9 Jan at 22:03 EST 8d 6h. Brown is not listed among those at the dinner and may well have left for home on Aug. 23. In the meantime, steps were underway to end the coinage of Liberty Head nickels and replace this design with the innovative Indian Head (Buffalo) nickel. The complete provenance for this PCGS PR63 example is listed in the PCGS Condition Census. In this way, had they been stolen en route, counterfeiters would not have known the proper hardening procedures for dies and it would have been difficult for such dies to be used to strike counterfeit coins. During that period, his ads could be found in the comics sections of newspapers. It was eventually purchased in 1926 by the eccentric - and very wealthy ? However, they are also highly counterfeited. He is known to have attended the ANA banquet in question. The 1913 Liberty Head nickel is one of only five known to exist, but it's the coin's back story that adds to its cachet: It was surreptitiously and illegally cast, discovered in a car wreck that killed its owner, declared a fake, forgotten in a closet for decades and then found to be the real deal. The 1913 Liberty Head nickel was reported in April to have sold in a private sale for $5 million. The design was well accepted by the public, being considered a distinct improvement over the old Shield nickel. The small-town dealer: This one is a bit hard to believe, if not inconceivable. The Eliasberg specimen is the finest known 1913 Liberty Head nickel. 1.) The April 15, 1923, Buffalo Courier, Buffalo, N.Y., for example, ran: “COINS – $50 paid for 1913 liberty nickels (not Buffalo); cash premiums paid for all rare coins; send 4c for circular; may mean your profit. It is believed that he used coin dies created in case the dies for the Buffalo nickel were not ready for production in time. C $19.99 shipping. Those who had 1913-dated Indian Head nickels inundated editors and columnists with questions on how to cash in. Most probably it came from fellow CCC members who were at the meeting where Brown joined the CCC and exhibited his nickel. ), The king of the 1913 Liberty Head nickel $50 offer, and the one many others likely followed in quoting that value, was Fort Worth, Texas, dealer B. Max Mehl. All he had to do was buy their Ace Coin Guide for $1, which he could get back after $10 of purchases. After having offered to buy 1913 Liberty Head nickels, Brown surprised everyone, or nearly so, by producing one of these coins for display at the 1920 American Numismatic Association convention, held at Chicago Aug. 23-26. The Eliasberg Specimen of the 1913 Liberty Head Nickel has been graded Proof-66 by both PCGS and NGC. So here is where two little-known but intriguing items impact this story of the 1913 Liberty Head nickel. Although the 1913 Liberty Head nickels had been surreptitiously struck in late December 1913, little was heard of them for some years. In 1912, proof coins were struck only on a special hydraulic press, which was also used for medals. It remained in his collection until 1996, when it sold for $1,485,000. ), • Claiming there were six-known specimens of the 1913 Liberty Head nickel, coin dealer John F. LeBlanc was credited, in the Boston Globe, as the one who would likely put a stop to the “widespread ransacking of pocketbooks” looking for 1913 rarities. As of Dec. 23, therefore, there were at least 11 pairs of 1913 Liberty Head nickels dies on hand, the 10 from San Francisco and the single set of proof dies. or Best Offer. In some ways the history of the 1913 Liberty Head nickel begins with the adoption of its design in 1883. The Denver Mint struck its first nickels on Feb. 5 and by year?s end the coining room had delivered a respectable eight million pieces, a large enough number that even today collectors have little trouble in finding a decent specimen at reasonable cost. 1883 and 1913 Liberty Head nickels are the most valuable in this series, and most of which were struck in Philadelphia, so you will see a P on the reverse, indicating where the coin was minted. The 1913 Liberty head nickel is so rare that years would elapse between offerings. There the cartoon, “Coin Believe It or Nots By Ripley,” has images of a college student and his girlfriend, with the headline, “A Penny that helped a boy through college.” The 1913 Liberty Head nickel, 1894-S Barber dime and 1804 Draped silver dollar occupied separate panels with separate tempting captions about getting rich through old coins and B. Max Mehl. In 1913 an unscrupulous mint employee produced five Liberty Head nickels dated 1913. Had they been fully informed of what was going on with Fraser and MacVeagh, it is possible that the 1913 Liberty Head nickel would never have come into being. • The 1913 Liberty Head nickel received an extra boost of popularity in 1931 when a United Press International story began circulating nationwide. This quest became … Free ... 40 Coins - Rare Nickel Roll! Stack's Bowers Galleries sold the Eliasberg 1913 Liberty Head nickel Wednesday night during the American Numismatic Association's World's Fair of Money at the Philadelphia Convention Center. One of them, Brown’s January 1920 ad, where he upped the ante from $500 to $600, ran concurrently with most of Kelso’s ads. The impact was readily apparent in Chicago, where a flood of inquiries was already taxing newspaper columnists, such as Marion Holmes, less than four months after the ANA convention. Liberty Head Five Cents (1883-1913) Introduced early in 1883, this type was a great improvement over its predecessor, both technically and aesthetically. He was a member of the group that toured the Philadelphia Mint in October 1919, and he is in the banquet photograph on p. 431 of the November 1919 issue of The Numismatist. His advertisements in The American Weekly, a Sunday news supplement, were apparently notable in that regard and judged so much of a success by that publication that it took out a full-page ad centered on Mehl in the March 4, 1934, Detroit Evening News. The king of the 1913 Liberty Head nickel $50 offer, and the one many others likely followed in quoting that value, was Fort Worth, Texas, dealer B. Max Mehl. 1551, the 1913 Liberty Head nickel (for which Mehl claimed Olsen had paid at least $900) brought $3,750 – far above the $50 price tag Mehl used to promote his business, but well below the $3.29 million the same coin was auctioned off for in 2014. Reproduced from Bunker’s Monthly – The Magazine of Texas, it observed that many with questions about coins had been referred to Mehl by such prominent organizations and government entities as “the Smithsonian Institution, the United States Treasury Department, the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, the American Consular Service in Ceylon, the Public Library of Minneapolis, the Superintendent of the Mint at Philadelphia, the Bank of Italy at San Francisco, the Metropolitan Art Museum of New York City, or by dozens of other prominent and disinterested agencies.”. His collection was rightly deemed one of the finest. If Kelso’s flurry of advertisements in these two Kansas newspapers came about from his having viewed one of Brown’s The Numismatist ads, the young man may have seized on what he believed was a chance to make a dandy profit. Whatever day was involved, the coins would have been removed from the Mint with all due haste as it would have been folly to have such pieces discovered in someone?s possession. Decades ago Texas dealer B. Max Mehl spent millions of dollars advertising in magazines and newspapers and on the radio selling copies of his Star Rare Coin Encyclopedia which listed prices he paid for coins. C $94.28. The reply from Director Roberts was short and to the point: the new Fraser design would be used exclusively in 1913 and no Liberty Head nickel coinage would be permitted. How about a brand new knitting machine? (Aug. 5, 1927, The Coosa River News, Centre, Ala.), • By 1929, “Mr. (Sept. 15, 1929, Brooklyn Eagle, Brooklyn, N.Y.), • Betty Blair, who penned the “Come to Heart’s Haven” column for Utah’s Salt Lake Telegram, often responded to questions concerning 1913 nickels. 1913 Liberty Head Nickel featured on TV. The Eliasberg 1913 Liberty Head nickel, one of only five ever produced. Arma, Kas.”. It is thought likely that Brown had a confederate because he was an employee of the storekeeping department, not the engraving department and presumably had no access to dies or planchets; it also seems likely that no more than two persons were involved as secrets are much easier to keep that way. “This is one of the greatest coins at that price range,” Jeff Garrett, one of two co-buyers, told UPI. $5.00 shipping. Get the best deal for US Liberty Nickels (1883-1913) ... 1893 PROOF LIBERTY HEAD NICKEL PCGS PR-65CAMEO A TRUE JEWEL BLACK & WHITE. 1913 Liberty Nickel on Mysteries at the Museum. In 1908, Mehl began publishing his well-received journal, Mehl’s Numismatic Monthly. In 1926, Peter Schoblocker and Valentine Heigel of Jacksonport, Wis., proffered the same in their classified ad: “TAKING IN TRADE – 1913 nickel liberty head (not buffalo) or 1894 dime. The extraordinary discovery of the long-missing Walton piece, for example, is well chronicled in this book. Ten cents and a stamp would get its latest catalog. The coining department actually prepared the proof planchets, but it seems likely that they were stored by the engraving department after that time. 1913 Liberty Nickel on Mysteries at the Museum. That coin was the 1913 Liberty Head (In the 1920s and early 1930s, one man and one coin were key factors that brought new life to old hobby. A man named Samuel Brown worked at the mint in 1913 and also introduced all five coins at the American Numismatic Association in 1920. Presented as lot No. A feature article about Mehl, “A Texas Master of Coins,” by Peter J. Molyneaux, in the March 1929 issue of The Numismatist, made that point. Hawaii 5-O episode with Olsen Specimen the star of the show. Ending 9 Jan at 22:03 EST 8d 6h. With a tremendous advertising budget, in the 1930s Mehl moved to larger newspaper display ads. 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