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 Post subject: Re: High Value Obsoletes
PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2008 9:19 pm 
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A high value note from the recent Stack's auction that went for $16k.
This one was described as:
Quote:
The Merchants Bank, Boston, Massachusetts. Five Hundred Dollars. July 1, 1863. Choice Very Fine.
Plate A. Fully issued note. Imprint of the American Bank Note Company. Green undertint protector in center, "D", and left side scallop surround with micro-lettering. Left circle, an eagle. Surround with corners using small "D" protectors. Upper right large "D" and lower right "500". Written No.47. Haxby MA-285 G60a. Plated in Roger Durand's (Interesting Notes about Denominations) representing the $500 note type. This was saved by the bank from its "PAID" drawer in 1896 when they were redeemed for a man in Lowell. That was the succeeding National Bank that forked over the cash and this obligation would have been on the books. An older bank official in 1896 would have known what the note looked like. It is difficult for us to dispute this as the "Crown Jewel" from the comprehensive Tom Denly Boston Collection. This treasure came to Mr. Denly via Roger H. Durand long ago. Not only was this magnificent item snagged by Herb and Martha for $9,600 in 2003, but it was even more fiercely competed for at the 2005 Memphis Sale. Opening at $3,250.00, there were several bidders still in play when the note was nearing $10,000. It finally settled at $13,800 (with the buyer's charge) which is one of the higher prices achieved for a northeastern note to this day. Light folds and petty pinholes. The redemption endorsement shows through faintly amidst the bold green color. Grade means nothing when weighed with the big picture. Easily, one of the greatest obsolete notes we have had the pleasure to catalogue for sale.
Ex Schingoethe Part 3 (R. M. Smythe & Co., June 17, 2005, Lot 1797); Herb and Martha Schingoethe Collection; 2003 CSNS Signature Sale (CAA, May 1-3, 2003, Lot 25856); Tom Denly Collection;


I like the history for this one that Stack's goes through. Who all is collecting this information??

This seems to be only the second Haxby-listed obsolete above $10k listed so far. The first was the $43k Knickerbocker note.

The sale also had at least 6 proof sheets of 4 that went for about $17k each. I figure you divide by 4 and get less than $10k per note and so should probably not be included in the top obsoletes?

Bernie


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MA-285 G60afront16k_.jpg
MA-285 G60afront16k_.jpg [ 107.37 KiB | Viewed 4625 times ]
MA-285 G60aback16k_.jpg
MA-285 G60aback16k_.jpg [ 70.2 KiB | Viewed 4621 times ]
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 Post subject: Re: High Value Obsoletes
PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2008 11:27 pm 
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Found another Haxby listed note. This proof went for $13.8k. Is this the record for a single proof note? I know that a bunch of the Christmas sheets of 4 sold for around $17k in the same Stacks sale.

This wonderful proof was not sold at the 1990 Christie auction and is listed as SENC in Haxby.

Description by Stack's:
Quote:
The Oil City Bank, Oil City, Pennsylvania. Five Hundred Dollars. September 15, 1864. Face Proof. Uncirculated.
Plate A. Printed on India paper. Imprint of American Bank Note Co. N.Y. Green protector grill with micro lettering "FIVE HUNDRED", "500" counter at the bottom center, and flanking "D" protectors adjacent the central vignette of a man operating a machine. Left end, standing Liberty. Lower right, a cooper at work on a barrel. This is the face proof. Issued notes from here used green backs and we would assume these denominations would be no exception. Haxby PA-380 G16a SENC. As stated in the Ford VIII Sale catalogue, this denomination has never been seen by us, and perhaps by anyone. This was bought by our consignor at the Ford VIII Sale for just short of $5,000 (actually $4,887.50). The entire price structure of obsolete proofs and of course those of upper tier caliber like this, changed in the matter of 45 minutes. The run of color proofs on this title was clearly a highlight in a sale that had the record setting Clark, Gruber & Co. color proof. We did not know how long this had been in the Ford Collection, but it was likely removed from a backing and pressed 20 years ago or more at least. Pressed professionally by Barrows, Richmond, Virginia at one time with small circle in circle pencil mark on back lower right corner. Like all the other proofs from this series solid in the Ford Collection, superb color and brightness and Very Choice eye appeal. An important opportunity for the emerging echelon of sophisticated collectors, spawned by the Ford and Schingoethe obsolete currency sales. From our sale of The John J. Ford, Jr. Collection, Part VIII, January 2005, Lot 1215.


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PA-380-G16aSENC.jpg
PA-380-G16aSENC.jpg [ 112.38 KiB | Viewed 4609 times ]

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 Post subject: Re: High Value Obsoletes
PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2008 11:47 pm 
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Here is a piece of cloth (with a lot of history) that went for $22k.

Stacks' description:
Quote:
C. O Brown, Mesilla, A.T. Twenty-Five Cts. "Payable in U. S. Notes, …" Dec. 2, 1862[?]. Printed on Cloth. Choice Very Fine.
Uniface. Printed in white linen. No imprint. 124mm by 64mm. Typeset within simple black frame. Top, "C. O. BROWN,/MESILLA, A. T." separated with line. Across center, "Twenty-Five Cts". Below, smaller sized text: "Payable in U.S. Notes, when presented in sums of Five Dollars." Below, signature spaces. Signed "Wm. B. Maxwell" in red and at the bottom, issuer's "C.O. Brown" in dark pen. Written No.46. Unlisted in Durand. (Interesting Notes About Territories). Not in Schingoethe Parts 1 to 14. Not in the Ford Collection Part XX Sale. An excessively rare and important note. Stack's has been privileged to offer perhaps the entire core of Mesilla Civil War issues in the span of less than five years. John Ford had three of the notes. Two types of paper Skillman notes (Ford XX Sale) and the cloth note issued by Sumowski sold in Ford XV. Here in this sale we are please to offer this choice quality C. P. Brown cloth note. This is the first we have catalogued and it is truly an exceptional note. William B. Maxwell, to whom the note was issued, was a former Mexican War soldier (discharged in 1847). He settled at Moccasin Spring, A.T. in 1864 but left in 1866 amidst Indian troubles. He spent the rest of his life in Arizona until his death in 1894 at Mesa. Charles O. Brown, being a saloon operator, was a much more flavorful character in Mesilla. He was born in 1829 in Essex County, New York, but the lure of forty-niner gold took him west. In 1850 he got involved with dubious sorts who were selling Apache scalps to the Mexican Government. The leader of this savage band, Captain John Glanton, often hacked into friendly Indians and Mexicans themselves for the bounties. Glanton became the security "beef" for a ferry operation on the Gila and Colorado River areas and dispatched a competing operator in order to run it himself. Ferrying these immigrants was profitable and the operation exploitive. Any local Indians doing ferrying work on the side were taken out and became part of the Apache scalp count. Having enough of this, several Indians ambushed Glanton and his men in their tents and killed them. Brown, who was out chopping wood with some others, escaped to California. Legend had it that $30,000 of buried gold from the raiders was never recovered. Brown had supposedly also escaped by his wits while under arrest prior to the Indian led massacre for a shooting. Around 1858, Brown returned to Arizona with his remaining stake from the raids and opened a saloon and gambling den. For a $500 fee he exclusively ran the booze and cards in town. He went to Mesilla to get married and opened the best saloon in the territory. After the war, as a wealthy man, he pursued recreational interests and continued to do business. He owned one of the finest mineral collections in the territory and was deeply interested in mining and prospecting. Later life befell him with tragedies and saloon fixtures were sold off in 1879. In 1908, he died, allegedly with few assets. The condition of this note is wonderful, as it should be for such a sturdy cloth. Quarter folded with some handling. There is some minor foxing seen more so on the back of the note. This is truly a sensational scrip note woven with fiendish tales and crafted in legend.

The Civil War era history associated with the Mesilla, A.T. issues appeared in Ford XX as follows:
"The Confederate War history this far west is not well known yet is quite fascinating. Early in 1862, a large Confederate force entered what is present day New Mexico. Texas seceded from the Union, Fort Bliss at El Paso was evacuated and captured by the Grays, who continued onwards to Fort Fillmore. Fillmore has also been abandoned by the Union forces. With Mes(or 'x')illa as the capital, the Confederate Territory of Arizona was created.
Meanwhile, farther north, the Union regrouped under Colonel Edward Canby. The Confederates under Brigadier General Henry H. Sibley arrived at their newly acquired stronghold at Fort Bliss, then headed north on the Camino Real to engage the Union. Canby had 3,800 men including Kit Carson's 1st New Mexico Volunteers (mostly Hispanic fighters from northern New Mexico). Sibley counted only 2,500 men and 15 cannons for their battle on February 13, 1862. Both sides suffered greatly amidst harsh winter conditions of dust and bad weather. The Union retreated into Fort Craig, but fortunately for Canby and his men, Sibley could not muster up the resources for a siege. Instead, Sibley had to head for Albuquerque to regroup. The Confederates were eventually defeated on March 28, 1862, at the Battle of Gloreta and retreated to Texas." [citation, R. M. Smythe's 2005 Memphis Sale Catalogue: Lot 1354.]
After the Union had set up shop in Mesilla, the need for private scrip was essential. William Skillman, a Confederate sympathizer initially, remained in operation as a necessary functionary with the rail road and post office in the Territory. The later Sumowski outfit (see Ford XV Sale) was associated with the 1st California Volunteers and may have served as a sutler's store (though not specified on the note). The 1st California initially came out of Oakland, down south to Los Angeles in October, 1861 and saw action in chasing down Showlater's group in the San Jose Valley at Warner's ranch. Other engagements from December, 1861 to April, 1862 period included companies being split for duties at Fort Yuma and Camp Latham. After the Carleton's Expedition they saw their Arizona theater duty. After the Confederate forces were driven from Mesilla, the 1st marched towards Tucson along the Gila River from April 10, 1862 to May 20, 1862 and engaged at Pechecho Pass. After that battle, they marched across the desert to the Rio Grande in July and August 1862, finally arriving at Mesilla itself. They remained until Christmas of that year. The Mesilla currency issues, such as this Brown linen note, are tangible reminders of a little known era in Civil War history


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COBrown0.025_22k.jpg
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 Post subject: Re: High Value Obsoletes
PostPosted: Sat Jun 07, 2008 9:25 am 
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Found the 4th Haxby listed obsolete (a proof) above $10k in Stack's January 2008 sale. It went for $10.4k and was described as:
Quote:
The Bank of the State of Minnesota, St. Paul, Minnesota. One Dollar. Late 1850's. Proof. Uncirculated.

Plate A. Printed on India paper. Imprint of the American Bank Note Company with Wellstood, Hay & Whiting, New York below. At top center, never issued With Rays Seated Liberty Dollar reverse in three-quarters view, supported by seated America. Lower left, youth with fife. Titles across top with "ONE DOLLAR" in geometric banner across center. Rose tinted with deeper corner details, at the center, large "1" outlined. Haxby MN-160 G2a. Rockholt A10 Unlisted. Hewitt B740-D1-1. Hatie MN-4. As a Proof, classified in the census as Unique, the only example recorded. That is always a hefty statement, but High Rarity 7 is the worst case scenario for this stunning proof. The style and grace of the vignette make this truly one of the highlights among highlights of this impressive collection. The note has a magnificent pedigree befitting such a magnificent note. It likely goes back to the Wismer holdings and estate and was sold in the legendary Dorothy Gershenson Sale in 1968. Later it was owned by Ambassador J. William Middendorf and sold in his 1994 Sale. Herb and Martha enjoyed its company for a decade more. The proof is close to or fully Choice. Petty handling and two back side hinges. Mere money may never obtain another of one of the greatest obsolete notes we have been honored to offer.

Ex Schingoethe Part 7 (R. M. Smythe & Co., July 11, 2006, lot 1185); Herb and Martha Schingoethe Collection; Hon. J. W. Middendorf III Collection Sale (Christie's, March 22, 1994, lot 49; Wismer-Osmun Part II Sale (Coins & Currency, Inc., August 7-9, 1969, lot 646).

Here there is a connection with "coins".


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 Post subject: Re: High Value Obsoletes
PostPosted: Sun Jun 08, 2008 9:19 am 
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Here is another high value obsolete from CA from the 10/17/07 Stack's auction. It went for $21.8k.
Quote:
Banking House of F. Argenti & Co., San Francisco, California. One Thousand Dollars. Ca. 1850. Choice Very Good to Fine.

Unissued remainder, but falsely accomplished and passed in circulation. Uniface. Size and style as an eastern demand bank note. Printed on bond paper. 178mm by 77mm. Engraved with the imprint of Rawdon, Wright, Hatch & Edson, New-York. Female seated with trident at the upper left. At the far right is Justice standing with scales. Top right center, two cherubs with a mythological whale (a sculpin?). White outlined block title across the center. Falsely signed at the lower right and dated. High Rarity 7 (1-3 known). In private hands, this is likely unique as a contemporary impression. A fabulous issue and a note that is worthy of inclusion in the next Haxby Obsolete Currency opus. F.[elix] Argenti operated as a bank and traded in gold dust as seen in published broadsides (see Don Kagin's Private Gold Coins and Patterns of the United States). According to Mr. Kagin, the firm initially attempted to circulate these notes, from $50 to $1,000, in 1850 without much success. A $50 private paper demand note would have met with much opposition, but a $1,000 paper bill? This incredible note is falsely signed and dated April 1, 1856, a date just prior to the firm's bankruptcy. As a period printed note from this short-lived issuer, it is the first we have seen or handled. If not for the existence of Proprietary Proof impressions made from the original steel plates (as four subject sheets) in the 1970's or 1980's by the American Bank Note Company, this issue would be virtually unheard of except for the Kagin plated sheet (in an institutional collection). Those very rare test impressions were later used to create a souvenir card by the American Bank Note Company and another promotional project in conjunction with an American Numismatic Association convention. Those later proofs do not diminish the importance of this amazing, original note. This is an outstanding example with only honest wear to report. There are no major flaws except for a penned "X" at the top center. The trimming is fairly tight on three sides. This easily stands up as one of the greatest obsolete banknotes from California in our opinion.

Ex R. L. Drinkwater, December 30, 1967.

Felix Argenti and T. Allen formed this firm which primarily dealt in exchange certificates. An illustration of the four subject sheet is plated in Kagin. They were short-lived and met bankruptcy by 1856. Drinkwater was a major dealer in Bangor, Maine.


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 Post subject: Re: High Value Obsoletes
PostPosted: Sat Jun 28, 2008 9:02 am 
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The "Clark, Gruber & Co" note (see my first posting in this thread) sold for 1.15*85,000= $97.75K in Knight's auction yesterday. It had an estimate of $125-175k.

The slightly lower-graded example (see my post of Jun 02, 2008 7:58 pm) that sold at Heritage just 6 months ago with an estimate of $50k had sold for a record price of $126.5k. This example thus remains the most expensive obsolete that I have found so far.

Two other examples sold in 2005 for about $70k.

This just shows that you need at least 2 very interested parties to achieve record prices. I guess that the person who won the Heritage example didn't want a second copy. Maybe the second highest bidder at the Heritage auction got a bargain at the Knight auction? :D

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 Post subject: Re: High Value Obsoletes
PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2008 6:44 pm 
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For what it's worth, I've found 24 auctions results of $10K or above for Kirtland notes, representing 23 different notes (one sold for $10K twice in the last three years).


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 Post subject: Re: High Value Obsoletes
PostPosted: Thu Sep 18, 2008 10:29 pm 
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Here is a very nice NBNC proof that just sold at HA for $25,300.
I think that this might be the highest value NBNC obsolete so far.

HA description:
"Dubuque, IA- State Bank of Iowa $10 UNL Oakes 60-10 Proof A magnificent Proof example which is about as spectacular as any obsolete Proof we have ever been privileged to handle. It is unlisted in the Haxby reference, and listed by Oakes as Rarity 7, although he mistakenly describes its color as "orange," when instead it is a bright red. The note is mounted on light card stock and bears the usual POC at the signature blocks. It is not an ABNCo sale item, and, if another exists, we've not ever seen it. Uncirculated, and clearly one of the highlight items from the Tom Flynn Dubuque collection. Estimate: $4,000 - $8,000."


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IA-1-G100butRedTint_f_NBNC_large_low.jpg
IA-1-G100butRedTint_f_NBNC_large_low.jpg [ 105.17 KiB | Viewed 4446 times ]

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 Post subject: Re: High Value Obsoletes
PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 9:27 am 
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No matter how you look at this, it's pretty clear that Iowa obsolete proof notes are extremely rare. None from this bank were seen in either the Christie's sale, the Smythe sales I've catalogued thus far, nor the handful of NASCA sales I've reviewed to date. I wonder how Flynn connected with it.

- Greg


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 Post subject: Re: High Value Obsoletes
PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 1:42 pm 
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Not really on topic, but I must say I love NBN notes. It's a real shame that only one Ohio bank used them (Marine Bank of Toledo) and their notes are extraordinarily rare.


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