1981 - 1990 Prices

 

Stack’s sale of the Amon Carter, Jr. Family Collection, January 18-21, 1984, is remembered today for its completeness, and is one of the few cabinets to include both an 1884 and 1885. Nearly all of these coins were acquired by Amon G. Carter, Sr., Fort Worth, Texas newspaperman and investor, in the 1940s, who liked dollars and trade dollars more than any other American series.

Although the market was far from a peak in 1984, the opportunity to bid on scarce and rare coins from such an important collection brought many collectors and investors to the fore, and prices were very strong.

1873 Br. Proof, light hairlines. Russet and iridescent toning. $1,540.00.

1873-CC Fully EF with mint lustre. Scarce. $418.00.

1873-S About Unc., numerous small bagmarks in the field. $577.50.

1874 Choice Br. Proof, splendid peripheral toning. $3,080.00.

1874-CC Gem Br. Unc. Exquisite satiny and frosty surfaces. Pristine. It is inconceivable that a better example exists. $10,450.00.

1874-S Br. Unc., frosty lustre. A better than average strike. $1,430.00.

1875 Br. Proof. A lovely example with purple and russet toning. $2,970.00.

1875-CC Gem Br. Unc. Sharply struck, with full lustre. Really as it left the mint but for light peripheral toning. $10,175.00

1875-S Gem Br. Unc. A pristine example with exquisite satiny surfaces. $12,650.00.

1876 Br. Proof, light hairlines but quite nice. $2,860.00.

1876-CC About Unc. and choice. $660.00.

1876-S Choice Br. Unc. A gem but for some light planchet adjustment marks on the head. $2,310.00.

1877 Br. Proof, faint hairlines, two tone appearance. Very scarce. $3,520.00.

1877-CC EF. Lustrous and really scarce. $440.00.

1877-S Br. Unc. and virtually in the choice category. $1,265.00.

1878 Choice Br. Proof. A two-tone beauty with toning about the edges. Very scarce. $6,600.00.

1878-CC EF and an exceptionally sharp strike. A choice example with claims to a higher grade. Rare. $1,100.00.

1878-S Br. Unc., satiny and slightly prooflike. Golden toning. $467.50.

1879 Br. Proof. Light cloudy toning. $1,540.00.

1880 Br. Proof. Hairlines but two-tone and rather nice, with its golden and iridescent toning. $1,650.00.

1881 Choice Br. Proof. A sensational example. $7,150.00.

1882 Choice Br. Proof. A twin to the preceding lot. $7,425.00.

1883 Choice Br. Proof. A glittering two-tone specimen. $6,050.00.

1884 Choice Br. Proof, iridescent toning about its periphery. From all available records and information, it is generally accepted that only TEN specimens were struck. This date as well as the 1885 were discovered in Proof sets by a Philadelphia dealer about the turn of the century. We have been privileged to sell this rarity ten times, and these sales involved only about four different examples. A great opportunity, made even greater by the appearance of the next lot, the exceptionally rare 1885 Trade dollar. More than likely from the Jack Roe Collection, June 1945, B. Max Mehl, Lot 627. $45,100.00.

1885 Choice Br. Proof, light hairlines. From all available records and information, it is generally accepted that only FIVE specimens were struck. When one considers the fact that this date appeared for sale only about six times in the past half century or so, can it be understood that this coin compares favorably with any great rarity in American numismatics. Stack’s has had the pleasure of selling some of the foremost collections in America and we are quite accustomed to rarities. However, this is only the third time we have been privileged to offer an 1885 Trade Dollar (in our 50 years of selling at public auction (we also sold one privately, the John H. Clapp coin to Louis Eliasberg, Sr.). We are distinctly pleased to offer this classic rarity to the collecting fraternity. More than likely from the Jack Roe Collection, Lot 628. $110,000.00.

 

Superior Stamp & Coin Company’s sale of the Hoagy Carmichael and Wayne Miller Collections, January 27-28, 1986. Offered just prior to the renaissance in grading interpretations (which took place in the same year), the coin descriptions given below are representative of catalogues of the era, in that plus signs are sometimes used to indicate a high-level specimen within a certain grade. While many of the auction catalogue descriptions in the present book are shortened (for example, the 1883 Proof below could be listed simply as Proof-63), I take the occasion to reprint the Superior descriptions in full—to illustrate that as rare coins increased in value, many auction houses could afford to devote more time and space to coin listings. What a far cry the listing below is from the practice of coin auction firms a generation or two earlier.

1873 Br. Proof-60+. Light to moderate hairlines in the obverse fields. The obverse is bright while the reverse exhibits a film of uniform lilac iridescent tone. $1,320.00.

1873 MS-63. Full "cartwheel" effect mint lustre. Light golden toning. $1,760.00.

1873-S MS-60. Br. Unc. with fewer bag marks than usually seen. $660.00.

1874 Br. Proof-60+. An attractive Proof specimen with some faint hairlines in the fields. Iridescent toning on the reverse. $1,210.00.

1875 Br. Proof-60+. Some faint hairlines in the obverse field, as well as some lint marks which were present on the planchet during striking. There is an interesting area on the reverse, from the rim at DOLLAR extending up through AMERICA, which appears to be adjustment marks. Light toning particularly on the reverse. $1,540.00.

1875-S MS-63. Well struck and well toned featuring a blending of deep russet and natural violet. Minimal amount of handling marks, a couple of which are about the rims. $1,375.00.

1875-S MS-60+. A sparkling frosty mint specimen with some residue of toning on the reverse. $770.00.

1876 Br. Proof-63. A bright glittering Proof specimen with some faint hairlines and light contact marks noted in the obverse fields. $1,870.00.

1876 Br. Proof-60+. A sparkling Proof specimen with some faint hairlines and contact marks in the fields. Overall quite pleasing. Some mottled toning rests within the devices on the obverse. The reverse exhibits a more uniform grayish-lilac tone. $990.00.

1876-S MS-63. A well struck sparkling Br. Unc. example with full "cartwheel" effect frosty mint lustre and just a hint of delicate violet toning. Some scattered bag marks appear, none of which are too serious. $990.00.

1876-S MS-60+. Subdued frosty mint lustre overlaid with a delicate blending of violet tones. $550.00.

1876-S AU-55+. Enough mint lustre to justify an Unc. specimen; however, we note some friction on the highest points. $286.00.

1876-S A pair of Choice About Unc.-55+ specimens, lightly toned. (Total: 2 pieces). $577.50.

1877 Br. Proof-63+. Bright glittering mirror surfaces throughout. A touch of delicate violet toning enhances the reverse. Some scattered lint marks appear in the fields which were present on the planchet during striking that do not diminish its overall beauty. $2,750.00.

1877 AU-55. Very softly struck on the upper obverse, including the stars and Liberty’s head. Yet enough frosty mint lustre as to justify the Unc. grade. $275.00.

1878 Br. Proof-63+. A splendid example of this popular Proof-only date with gorgeous deep sunset toning across the surfaces of both sides. The colors range from midnight iridescent to light sunset hues. Some faint hairlines are noted under magnification. $2,750.00.

1878 Br. Proof-63. A glittering Proof specimen with some faint hairlines and lint marks. One is noted in the left obverse field. (This appears to have been on the planchet during striking.) Lightly frosted devices against totally brilliant fields gives this lovely Proof-only trade dollar the desirable "cameo" effect. The reverse is particularly choice and exhibits a natural blending of violet and electric blue. $2,420.00.

1878-CC Fine to VF. Some light rim nicks and probably cleaned long ago, now an antique grayish-violet. $440.00.

1879 Br. Proof-65. An exquisite gem Proof specimen exhibiting golden centers surrounded by violet with electric blue at the borders. $5,500.00.

1879 Br. Proof-65. A magnificent gem Proof specimen totally brilliant and hairline free. Some minute die chips and lint marks in the surfaces are the only impairment; mint-caused as they were on the planchet during striking. $3,960.00.

1879 Br. Proof-63. A glittering Proof specimen with plenty of "eye appeal." A light surface mark is noted above Liberty’s lap; otherwise, quite choice. The reverse is especially choice and exhibits an attractive blending of pale lilac and electric blue hues. $2,090.00.

1879 Br. Proof-63. Attractive light pastel iridescent toning across the surfaces on both sides. A mint-caused "wavy" mark is noted on the eagle’s left shoulder extending to the rim. This was caused by a strand of hair adhering to the die during striking and is mentioned mainly for the sake of accuracy. $1,870.00.

1880 Br. Proof-63. Another Choice Br. Proof specimen, this one with a totally brilliant obverse and some toning resting within the devices. The reverse exhibits a uniform blending of light golden violet iridescent toning. When tilted toward the light under low magnification, some faint hairlines may be seen, none of which are serious. $1,870.00.

1880 Br. Proof-63. A splendid Proof specimen with creamy white surfaces on both sides. Some scattered light marks commensurate with this numerical grade, none of which are too serious. $2,200.00.

1881 Br. Proof-63+. A splendid specimen with gorgeous multicolored iridescent toning encircling the borders. Some faint hairlines and lint marks are noted in the obverse fields, but most were present on the planchet when made. $3,740.00.

1881 Br. Proof-60+. A glittering Proof specimen with some contact marks in the left obverse fields; otherwise, quite choice. The reverse exhibits a blending of violet and russet hues. $1,760.00.

1882 Br. Proof-65. This beauty exhibits the most exquisite blending of violet and electric blue iridescent tones that one could wish for. $5,775.00.

1882 Br. Proof-63. A glittering Proof specimen with toning resting within the devices. The reverse fields are overlaid with a film of light violet iridescence. $1,760.00.

1882 Br. Proof-63. A choice Proof specimen with some faint hairlines in the fields, none of which are very serious. The obverse is totally brilliant, while the reverse exhibits a light golden and pale violet tone. $1,980.00.

1883 Br. Proof-63. Uniform pale golden tone which deepens a bit within the devices. Free of any serious hairlines, just a few scattered lint marks as made. $2,860.00.

 

The Bowers and Merena sale of the Norweb Collection, March 24-25, 1988, offered a full set of trade dollars, including the famous 1884 and 1885 Proofs. This holding was formed many years earlier by Ambassador and (primarily) Mrs. R. Henry Norweb, at a time when emphasis was not paid to business strikes of exceptional quality. Nonetheless, the 1876-CC and 1877-CC pieces are notable, and the 1878-CC is among the finest sold during the decade of the 1980s. (In the interest of brevity and space, I have omitted the lengthy descriptions for the 1884 and 1885.)

1873 Proof-64. Brilliant surfaces with splashes of blue and amber toning. Some light hairlines. $3,080.00

1873-CC AU-55. Light gray toning with golden coloration in areas where the original mint lustre is intact. $1,320.00.

1873-S AU-55. Fully brilliant with mint lustre around the stars, letters and other protected areas. $632.50.

1873-S EF-45. Light champagne toning. $330.00.

1874 Proof-65. The surfaces are toned in lovely shades of blue, violet and gold. The devices are strongly detailed. $9,350.00.

1874-CC AU-50. Champagne toning with splashes of amber, violet, and baby blue. The reverse is partially prooflike. $522.50.

1874-S VF-20. $121.00.

1875 Proof-65. Pearl gray surfaces with areas of iridescent blue, violet, and amber toning. A beautifully preserved example without hairlines or other defects. $9,240.00.

1875-CC VF-30. $143.00.

1875-S EF-45. Splashes of amber and violet toning on gray surfaces. $154.00.

1876 Proof-65. Coppery amber, light blue and violet toning complement the pleasing reflective fields and lustrous devices. A tiny spot at the inner point of the ninth star on the obverse is noted. $6,380.00.

1876-CC MS-60. A semi-prooflike specimen, with splashes of golden brown toning. Far scarcer in high grades than either the Philadelphia or San Francisco Mint issues. $1,870.00.

1876-S A fully lustrous gem specimen. Misted with light gray and golden brown toning with ample mint brilliance visible beneath The devices are nearly as sharp as those seen on Proofs. $4,840.00.

1877 Proof-63 to 64. Glittering deep mirror surfaces with traces of iridescent blue and violet toning at the periphery. The devices are sharply defined and lustrous. A shallow abrasion or planchet irregularity is present on the obverse extending from the laurel branch towards Miss Liberty’s foot. A few light hairlines are noted on the reverse. $3,080.00.

1877 AU-55. Attractively toned in mottled shades of violet, blue and gold. A pleasing glossy example with much mint lustre around the stars, letters, and in the protected areas. $495.00.

1877-CC MS-60. An exceptionally attractive example with rich golden toning on pearl gray surfaces. The reverse has considerable prooflike character. Most design details are strong defined, especially on the reverse. $1,760.00.

1877-S MS-60 to 63. Mottled gray and iridescent blue toning on brilliant surfaces. Lustrous and sharply struck. $825.00.

1878 Proof-65. The surfaces have faint champagne toning with splashes of amber at the center and areas of blue and violet at the periphery. The design details are sharp. The surfaces are remarkably smooth and virtually free of imperfections. $8,800.00.

1878-CC MS-63. Fully lustrous with light golden toning and traces of mint brilliance. $8,800.00.

1878-S MS-60/63. The brilliance surfaces lightly splashed with amber toning. The fields have considerable prooflike character, and the devices are nearly as sharply defined as on Proof example. $550.00.

1879 Proof-65. Beautiful mirror fields and razor-sharp cameo devices. The surfaces have lovely champagne toning with areas of blue and violet. $9,350.00.

1880 Proof-65. The fields are immaculate and have the faintest suggestion of golden toning with a tinge of violet at the upper portion of the obverse rim. The devices are sharp and frosty. $10,450.00.

1880 Proof-60. Attractive iridescent blue and violet toning at the centers with areas of gold at the periphery. Some hairlines prevent us from assigning a higher grade. $1,320.00.

1881 Proof-64/65. Lovely mottled golden brown, blue, violet toning with traces of mint brilliance. The mirrorlike fields contrast sharply with the well-defined, lustrous devices. $3,300.00.

1882 Proof-65. A magnificent glittering gem. Toned in breathtaking shades of amber, violet, and blue. $16,500.00.

1883 Proof-65. A splendid specimen with deeply mirrored fields and richly lustrous devices. The surfaces are virtually immaculate and very pleasing. The obverse is brilliant at the center with violet and blue-green toning. $9,460.00.

1884 Proof-60 to 63. 420.8 grains.… $57,200.00.

1885 Trade dollar. Proof-60 to 63.… $121,000.00.

 

The Bowers and Merena sale of the David B. Silberman, Jr Collection, November 16, 1988, offered a full set of trade dollars, excluding the famous 1884 and 1885 Proofs. The proofs were of magnificent quality, possessing wonderful multicolored toning of fantastic vibrancy.

1873 Proof-64.  A beautiful example having frosty devices and deep mirror fields.  Lovely light golden brown toning is present in the central areas with electric blue and maroon iridescence periphrially. A visual feast certain to delight the numismatic connoisseur. $4,620.

1873 MS60 to 63.  The fields are intermediate in texture between satiny and prooflike.  Both surfaces have blushes of appealing golden toning.  $1,045.

1873-CC AU-58. Brilliant and lustrous with some tiny toning spots on the obverse. $1,100.00.

1873-S MS60. Fully brilliant.  Both surfaces have appealing satiny mint luster. $330.

1874 Proof-65. A superb example with nearly all details defined to full advantage.  The cameo devices contrast sharply with the mirror fields, and both surfaces are magnificently toned in shades of gold, maroon and electric blue; the different colors arranged concentrically. $8,800.  [This coin resides in the Legend Collection]

1874 MS65.  The fields and motifs are smooth and satiny.  The obverse has very faint pearl gray toning with golden highlights.  The reverse is splashed with rich electric blue and amber iridescence.  $4,620.

1874-CC MS63. A beautiful, brilliant, frosty example.  Kept from a higher grade by a pair of tiny reverse flecks.   $1,430.

1874-S AU-58.  Brilliant and satiny.  $440.

1875 Proof-65. A magnificent, sharply struck specimen having exquisite toning in varied rainbow hues with shades of golden brown, electric blue and lilac predominating  It is doubtful that more than just a few other examples could equal the esthetic appeal of the presently offered piece. $13,750.

1875 MS63  Sharply struck and lustrous with toning in lovely mottled shades of blue and gold.  $3,850.

1875-CC MS60/63. An attractive, brilliant and satiny example of the variety.  $687.50

1875-S AU-55.  Faint champagne iridescence is present on  both surfaces.  $247.50

1875-S/CC AU-50.  Cleaned long ago, now toned to a very faint golden shade.  $715.

1876 Proof-65. A simply spectacular trade dollar!  The devices are frosty and most design details are very sharp.  The fields are splendid, deeply reflective mirrors.  Both surfaces are toned in beautiful polychrome hues with the different colors arranged in concentric bands. $10,450

1876 MS63/65.  A lovely sharply struck example toned in rich, mottled shades of golden brown and sky blue with maroon highlights.  $1430.

1876-CC MS-60/63. Brilliant and satiny with nearly all design details defined to full advantage. $1,210.  [note: the plate shows this to be a double die reverse]

1876-S MS60 to 63.  Lustrous with blushes of faint heather iridescence on both surfaces. $660.

1877 Proof-65. An exquisite, razor sharp specimen.  The cameo devices beautifully contrast with the deep mirror fields.  The surfaces are toned in gorgeous shades of golden brown, maroon and electric blue.  A scarcely noticeable planchet striation is noted extending from the right wing to border. $8,800.

1877 MS60 to 63. A lustrous example having appealing lilac and gray iridescence and faint golden highlights. $550.

1877-CC AU-58. Brilliant, satiny, and sharply struck. $1,100.

1877-S AU-58. Brilliant with boldly defined design details. $440.

1878 Proof-65. A simply wonderful trade dollar.  The motifs are incredibly sharp, frosty cameos set within blazing mirror fields.  Both surfaces are beautifully toned in appealing hues of amber, rose and sky blue with the different colors arranged concentrically.  We can say without hesitation that this example is one of the nicest trade dollars we have ever seen. $20,900.

1878-CC AU58 to MS60. Lustrous with light golden iridescence on pearl gray surfaces. $3,190.

1878-S MS-60. Satiny and sharply struck with a faint nuance of heather iridescence complementing both surfaces. $352.

1879 Proof-65. A superb example of this desirable proof only issue. The frosty motifs have excellent definition and the fields are fully reflective.  The surfaces are toned in gorgeous hues of gold, maroon and blue with the different colors arranged in concentric bands. $22,000.

1880 Proof-64/65. Toned in a pleasing rich golden shade with wisps of electric blue and maroon iridescence at the borders. $8,250.

1880 Proof-60. Attractive iridescent blue and violet toning at the centers with areas of gold at the periphery. Some hairlines prevent us from assigning a higher grade. $1,320.00.

1881 Proof-64. The frosty devices nicely compliment the glittering fields.  Both obverse and reverse have appealing golden brown toning with tinges of blue and maroon iridescence peripherally.  $4,400.

1882 Proof-65. Sharply struck, the obverse is brilliant centrally, changing to a light heather shade peripherally.  The reverse is richly toned in mottled hues of electric blue, maroon and gold.  $15,950.

1883 Proof-65. A beautiful, razor sharp impression.  The obverse has slightly subdued brilliance and rich golden toning with wisps of sky blue and maroon coloration at the rims.  The reverse has pleasing lilac, blue and heather iridescence with the different colors arranged in concentric bands.  $18,700.

The late 1980s were particularly heady times in the coin market. An investment fever pervaded numismatics. Almost any nineteenth or twentieth century silver or gold coin in higher grades such as MS-64, MS-65, Proof-64, and Proof-65 was recommended for investment purposes. Countless columns of print were devoted to "Wall Street money," which was said to soon deluge the coin market, raising prices even more. Billions of dollars were on the way, investors were led to believe. When that happened, coins now worth $10,000 might become worth a million!

In the trade dollar series, collectors remained on the sidelines as prices doubled and tripled over what they were just a few years earlier. At the height of the market in 1989, nearly all buyers were investors. As might be expected, wild fluctuations occurred in pricing during 1989 and in the year or two preceding it. As an example, in the December 13, 1989 issue of Coin World, the highly-respected "Trends" column, compiled by Keith Zaner, gave these prices for MS-65 trade dollars:

1873 $15,200

1873-CC $20,000

1874 $16,950

1874 $15,000

1874-CC $16,850

1874-S $16,700

1875 $16,700

1875-CC $16,700

1875-S $15,000

1876 $15,050

1876-CC $16,750

1876-S $15,000

1877 $17,150

1877-CC $16,950

1877-S $15,000

1878-CC $150,000

1878-S $15,000.

On December 22, 1989, The Coin Dealer Newsletter, also highly respected as a source of information, stated that any MS-65 trade dollar was worth $15,800 wholesale ("bid") and that a survey of Teletype and electronic exchanges showed that no coins were being offered for sale; there was no "ask" price!

Investors did not care about fine points of numismatics. Most did not know or did not care that in MS-65 grade an 1873-CC or 1876-CC trade dollar was an incredible rarity, if indeed any existed at all, or that the 1875-S was a common date. There was a great homogenization of prices, and most dates settled near the "type" or basic price. To be sure, some were worth more, but as the above "Trends" figures show, all but the 1873-CC and 1878-CC were valued within 20% of the minimum of $15,000. In other words, investors didn’t care (or didn’t know) if they were buying a rare trade dollar or a common one—it made no difference as long as it was "investment quality" MS-65!

As the 1878-CC was as rare then as it is now, few if any changed hands at the rarefied level of $150,000. I imagine that this price represents Coin World "Trends" compiler Keith Zaner’s guess as to what one might have sold for if offered in those times of illogical market structure.

Finally, in spring 1989 the market ran out of steam. The supply of new buyers so essential to price growth ended, and prices began a tailspin. Common date Mint State trade dollars, which sold for more than $15,000 at the height of the frenzy, plummeted in value. The prices given in this text are closing prices of December 1989, and as high as they may seem, they would have been even higher had spring or summer 1989 prices been used!

After 1989, investors fell over themselves exiting the coin market, Wall Street money was rarely discussed, and trade dollars in higher grades once again became the domain of collectors. Of course, any collector keeps investment in the back of his mind, and hopes that his collection, when sold at a later date, will yield a profit. However, after 1989, investment became secondary. As a result, the pricing structure of high-grade trade dollars since 1989 is more reflective of collector demand. However, at the prices levels for MS-65 and Proof-65, much of the structure is based upon sales to investors (whose numbers are no longer legion).

 

The Heritage 1990 Seattle ANA Sale, August 22-25, 1990, offered an unusual hoard of 1878-S trade dollars and included many other fine specimens.  I have omitted the majority of the non-hoard coins in the interest of brevity.

MINI-HOARD OF 1878-S TRADE DOLLARS

The following mini-hoard of 1878-S Trade Dollars is one of the many highlights offered in the 1990 ANA Sale. The story behind their discovery and inclusion in this sale is incredible. The consignor, (who we will call "Jim") one of the nicest and most pleasant people I've ever had the pleasure of meeting, had elderly next door neighbors that he was very close to. He would help and befriend them whenever the opportunity arose. Little did ... Jim" know what was in store. Upon the death of the elderly couple, " Jim" was named executor of the estate - what little there seemed to be - and two requests were made; all financial instruments were to be left to a local university and all personal property would go to the executor. "Jim" went to the bank and opened the safe deposit box. Not expecting to see a great deal, he was taken back by the wealth before his eyes. The wealth however appeared to be all financial and thus left to the university. Among the tens of thousands of dollars in stocks and bonds there was also over $1 million in bearer bonds. Upon removal of all the papers, on the bottom of the drawer, just lying loose, were 25 1878-S Trade Dollars! As wonderful as this seemed, there was a dilemma. Were the coins "financial " and thus property of the university, or were they personal and thus the property of "Jim." After long discussions with the attorneys, it was decided that the coins would be divided equally - with 13 coins going to the university and the remaining 12 coins to "Jim."

The university immediately sold their coins to a local coin dealer. This dealer in turn sold them to a major west coast firm who submitted them to PCGS who in turn graded them mostly MS-65, with a few MS-64's and (2) MS-66. Point of fact: every known 1878-S Trade Dollar grading MS-65 or higher (at the time of this writing) can be traced back to this hoard of 25 coins. The only exception being the lone MS-67, which, as justice would have it, is also included in this incredible sale!

[Note:  as you can tell by the prices realized, these coins had incredible eye appeal and many were conservatively graded. I have omitted the descriptions in the interest of brevity.]

PCGS MS63. $2,750

PCGS MS63. $2,310

PCGS MS64. $5,940.

PCGS MS64. $9,020..

PCGS MS64. $10,120.

PCGS MS64. $6,820.

PCGS MS65. $18,700.

PCGS MS65. $18,700.

PCGS MS65. $18,700.

PCGS MS65. $27,500.

PCGS MS65. $25,300.

PCGS MS66. The single finest coin in this group and, with the exception of the incomparable MS-67 1878-S traded dollar which is featured in this sale, the single finest example of this date which we have ever had the honor of selling.  This piece, yet again, has untoned centers framed by reddish-orange iridescence at the borders.  What makes this coin so special is its intense, fiery Mint luster and its lack of appreciable marks.  $50,600.  [Note:  this coin is now PCGS MS67 and is in the Legend Collection]

Another 1878-S specimen in this sale not from the Seattle Hoard:

PCGS MS67.  Simply put, this is the finest business strike trade dollar which we have ever handled.  Both the obverse and the reverse are absolutely unmarked, dripping with luster and covered with a rich rose-gray overtone with underlying blue, green, gold and red.  The strike is complete on even the finest feather details.  This is, in sum, the sort of coin which you could stare at for hours and never grow tired of it.  $66,000.