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$77 million is realized by the Lincoln Cent Collection | CoinNews


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    The finest collection of Lincoln Cents has been auctioned for $7,731,811 by GreatCollections, setting all-time world records including the first Lincoln Cent to break the million-dollar mark. 13 other Lincoln Cents realized over $100,000 each.

    1955 Lincoln Cent Doubled Die Obverse PCGS MS-65+ RD CAC
    1955 Lincoln Cent Doubled Die Obverse PCGS MS-65+ RD CAC

    The Stewart Blay Collection, also known as "Red Copper" was meticulously formed over the past 50 years and included the finest examples of Lincoln Cents from 1909 to 1958, with all of the rare Doubled Die varieties. Doubled Dies became famous after the 1955 issue and occurs when the coin die is struck twice, resulting in all coins minted with that die to appear double-struck.

    The 1958 Doubled Die, the finest of only three known, realized $1.136 million, and is the first Lincoln Cent to sell at auction for over $1 million (and first non-gold 20th century coin also to realize 7-figures).

    1958 Lincoln Cent Doubled Die Obverse PCGS MS-65 RD CAC
    1958 Lincoln Cent Doubled Die Obverse PCGS MS-65 RD CAC

    It was graded and authenticated by Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS) and approved by Certified Acceptance Corporation (CAC). The winning bidder is an advanced collector who needed this coin to complete his collection. 117 bids were entered by 18 different bidders.

    Another rare Doubled Die variety is the 1969-S, minted in San Francisco. About 50 coins have been discovered to date with the Blay example being the finest known by a wide margin. Graded PCGS MS-66 RD with CAC approval, the rarity realized $601,875, after 199 bids were placed.

    1969-S Lincoln Cent Doubled Die Obverse PCGS MS-66 RD CAC
    1969-S Lincoln Cent Doubled Die Obverse PCGS MS-66 RD CAC

    Regular Lincoln Cents also sold for record amounts. The finest 1919, the sole example of the whole series to be graded PCGS MS-69 RD CAC realized $421,875, while the famous 1909-S VDB Lincoln, tied with about a dozen others a the same grade of PCGS MS-67 RD, realized $345,375, more than double the previous auction record set by another firm. The finest known 1911 realized $120,937.

    1909-S Lincoln Cent V.D.B. PCGS MS-67 RD CAC OGH
    1909-S Lincoln Cent V.D.B. PCGS MS-67 RD CAC OGH

    Blay, a sculptor from New York, was attracted to Lincoln Cents at eight years old. He spent decades traveling the country, visiting coin shops and shows on his quest for the very best, while also sharing his knowledge with fellow collectors and dealers. He consigned his core collection to GreatCollections several months ago and had expected to see the sales results before he unexpectedly passed away in late November, aged 71.

    Ian Russell, president and co-founder of GreatCollections said, "Stewart spent his life procuring the absolute best-of-the-best Lincoln Cents, and they were very well received by the market. Most of these coins were being auctioned for the very first time. It might be another generation before they appear on the market again."

    The 1955 Doubled Die — perhaps the most famous of all varieties of U.S. coins — realized $287,156, more than double the previous price record of $124,875, also set by GreatCollections in 2020.

    "It was one of our greatest honors to be entrusted with these coins and I’m sure Stewart is very pleased with the results. Special thanks to all of the bidders that turned this special event into a record-breaking auction that will be remembered for decades to come," continued Russell.

    Highlights from the Stewart Blay Collection of Lincoln Cents

    PCGS
    Price Guide

    Sold by GreatCollections

    1909-S Lincoln Cent V.D.B. PCGS MS-67 RD CAC OGH

    $175,000

    $345,375

    1911 Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-68 RD CAC

    $65,000

    $120,938

    1911-S Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-66+ RD CAC

    $22,500

    $45,000

    1912 Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-67+ RD CAC

    $20,000

    $42,469

    1914-D Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-66 RD CAC OGH

    $53,500

    $109,688

    1916-S Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-65 RD CAC OGH

    $6,000

    $12,938

    1917 Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-68 RD CAC

    $35,000

    $78,075

    1918-D Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-66+ RD CAC

    $31,500

    $53,859

    1918-S Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-65+ RD CAC

    $18,500

    $32,635

    1919 Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-69 RD CAC OGH

    Unpriced

    $421,875

    1919-S Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-65 RD CAC OGH

    $5,500

    $9,956

    1920-S Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-65 RD CAC OGH

    $16,000

    $29,935

    1921 Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-68 RD CAC OGH

    $32,500

    $59,625

    1921-S Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-65 RD CAC OGH

    $11,500

    $21,038

    1922 No D Lincoln Cent Strong Reverse PCGS MS-64 RD CAC OGH

    Unpriced

    $253,125

    1922-D Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-66+ RD CAC

    $22,500

    $49,331

    1923 Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-68 RD CAC OGH (Toned)

    $25,000

    $65,531

    1924 Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-67+ RD CAC

    $18,500

    $53,719

    1924-S Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-65 RD CAC OGH

    $30,000

    $51,760

    1925 Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-67+ RD CAC

    $6,000

    $15,173

    1925-S Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-65 RD CAC OGH

    $25,000

    $91,125

    1926 Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-67+ RD CAC (Toned)

    $2,500

    $15,173

    1927-D Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-65+ RD CAC

    $4,500

    $11,250

    1927-S Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-65+ RD CAC

    $34,000

    $52,875

    1928-D Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-66+ RD CAC

    $25,000

    $61,313

    1928-S Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-66 RD CAC OGH

    $35,000

    $74,813

    1930-S Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-67 RD CAC OGH

    $13,500

    $25,875

    1931-D Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-66 RD CAC

    $3,750

    $9,450

    1933 Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-67+ RD CAC

    $5,000

    $29,250

    1940-S Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-67+ RD CAC

    $500

    $4,472

    1943-S Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-68+ CAC

    $25,500

    $46,125

    1945 Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-67 RD CAC

    $260

    $3,148

    1955 Lincoln Cent Doubled Die Obverse PCGS MS-65+ RD CAC

    $125,000

    $287,156

    1955 Lincoln Cent PCGS MS-67+ RD CAC

    $1,750

    $9,056

    1958 Lincoln Cent Doubled Die Obverse PCGS MS-65 RD CAC

    Unpriced

    $1,136,250

    1969-S Lincoln Cent Doubled Die Obverse PCGS MS-66 RD CAC

    Unpriced

    $601,875

    1970-S Lincoln Cent Large Date. Doubled Die Obverse PCGS MS-66 RD CAC

    $24,500

    $42,750

    1972 Lincoln Cent Doubled Die Obverse PCGS MS-67+ RD CAC

    $9,000

    $17,438

    1974-S Lincoln Cent Struck in Aluminum PCGS Proof-68 CAMEO

    Unpriced

    $199,687

    The full prices realized of all 286 Lincoln Cents from the Stewart Blay Collection can be viewed at www.greatcollections.com/blay in the GreatCollections auction archive.

    Blay also consigned his collection of Canadian Cents, which are currently being auctioned by GreatCollections over two weeks in February. The collection includes very rare King George V specimen issues.

    About GreatCollections

    GreatCollections, the official auction house of the American Numismatic Association, specializes in auctioning certified coins and banknotes, handling transactions from start to finish. Since its founding in 2010, GreatCollections has successfully auctioned over 1 million certified coins, making it one of the leading certified coin companies in the United States with annual sales in 2022 exceeding $270 million. Ian Russell, owner/president of GreatCollections, is a member of the prestigious Professional Numismatists Guild and member of the National Auctioneers Association. For more information about GreatCollections, visit www.greatcollections.com or call 800-442-6467.

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