This year 163 sets and collections are receiving major awards and 2,655 sets are receiving a "Best of the Registry" nod. 35 sets are being recognized for winning an award every year for 10 years in a row! These numbers tell the story. The PCGS Set Registry is filled with thousands of wonderful sets owned by collectors from all over the world who demonstrate to us a level of collecting acumen we never imagined during the first days of the Registry. To all winners we say, “Congratulations!” And to all participants in the Set Registry we admire your passion and hope that you continue to enjoy your pursuit of numismatic excellence. Thanks for sharing your wonderful collections with us!
Collectors Universe President, PCGS Founder
Best Classic Sets (1792 to 1964) of 2013
Simpson - Lincoln Cents Off-Metal Strikes, Circulation Strikes (1943-1944)
This is a phenomenal set of coins, put together by the super-collector "Simpson" (who also owns the finest set of U.S. Patterns, $10 Indians, Half Dimes, and so much more). Simpson's Off-Metal Lincoln Cent Set includes six coins that everyone dreams of owning: 1943 Bronze Cent, 1943-D Bronze Cent (UNIQUE!), 1943-S Bronze Cent, 1944 Steel Cent, 1944-D Steel Cent, and 1944-S Steel Cent. No one in numismatic history has ever completed this short, but very sweet, set. A third consecutive Gold for this Hall of Fame set.
High Desert - Complete U.S. Type Set (1792-1964)
The High Desert collection continues its dominance of the type set category and receives its twelfth consecutive award. This complete collection has superb quality coins, as its 65.62 average certainly attests. Trying to increase such a high quality set is extremely difficult; as coins that would improve this impressive set do not appear in the marketplace with frequency and they usually cost a bundle. Its induction into the Hall of Fame two years ago was most deserving for this incredible collecting accomplishment.
Alcon - Commemoratives Complete Set, Circulation Strikes and Proof (1892-present)
Alcon's complete commemorative set came onto the scene in 2008 ranked #5. Slowly and methodically the set has increased in size and ratings. This year, although not quite complete at 99.74%, the set is certainly worthy of its second gold award with a weighted GPA of 65.75. Congratulations!
ESM - U.S. Cents Complete Set with Major Varieties (1793-present)
U.S. Cents Complete Set with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes and Proof (1793-present)
(Note that the award includes the 3 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) From Half Cents through Small Cents, from the first US coins to the present, the ESM Collection is replete with rarities and coins with special pedigrees, including Eliasberg, Pittman, Naftzger, etc. It is 99.5% complete from 1793 to date. Its weighted GPA of just over 61 is all the more impressive by virtue of it containing 46 eighteenth-century coins. Receiving his seventh consecutive award, and with a Set Rating gap of over 42 points over the second place set, the quality and breadth of this Hall of Fame collection is simply amazing.
Sonoran Monsoon – U.S. Dollars Complete Set, Circulation Strikes (1794-Present)
U.S. Dollars Complete Set with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes (1794-present)
(Note that the award includes the 2 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) The size and scope of a complete set of U.S. dollar coins including major varieties boggles the mind. There are over 216 coins just in the Sacagawea and Presidential Dollars alone! Not to mention the Bust, Seated, Morgan and Peace dollars. With a total of 471 coins, this set is 99.39% complete, lacking only the 1794, 1851 and 1870-S. Kudos on the third gold award and for undertaking and having virtually completed such a monumental set.
The Missouri Cabinet - Half Cents with Major Varieties (1793-1857)
Half Cents with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes and Proof (1793-1857)
(Note that the award includes the 7 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) This complete collection of Half Cents with varieties in both MS and Proof is one that won’t be matched for some time. New this year to the Registry, it carries a rating of 62.27 and to lend some idea of how high that really is, in the entire set, there are only 8 coins in existence that could improve it. That’s all dates, all grades. 89 of the 93 coins show a “pop higher” figure of 0. Need we say more?
ESM - Large Cents with Major Varieties (With the four Ultra Rarities), Circulation Strikes and Proof (1793-1857)
While a complete collection of Large Cents in MS and Proof would be a major undertaking, when it includes the 1793 Strawberry Leaf Wreath Cent, the 1794 Starred Reverse, the 1795 Reeded Edge and both 1795 Jefferson Head Cents, all you can say is “wow.” The few “missing” coins are Coronet Proofs, which turn up say…about two or three times per century. With pedigrees from the Norweb, Eliasberg, Parmelee and Garrett collections, it doesn’t get much better than this.
Twin Leaf Collection - Large Cents, Proof (1817-1857)
This marks this collector's fourth major award. Early Large Cent Proofs are incredibly rare and popular, especially those dates prior to the 1840s. This set is almost 90% complete and has a weighted GPA just shy of 65, an incredible accomplishment. A quick perusal of the inventory listing shows more than a few, unique Top Pop coins, plus others that are very close. We enjoyed spending time looking at the wonderful photographs of the Twin Leaf coins. Over two thirds of the coins in the set are at the top of the population listing, with none higher. This marks the fourth Gold Award for this set in the past five years.
The Castle Collection - Indian Cents, Circulation Strikes (1859-1909)
Indian Cents with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes (1859-1909) (Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) How about starting off with a 100% complete set of Indian cents, with varieties, in an average grade of 67.48? If this is a start, where does it finish? Thirty-six coins in this set are already un-improvable. Over 80% of the coins are Red! Kudos to “The Castle Collection.” A well deserved fourth award and a PCGS Set Registry Hall of Fame entrant last year!
Tom Bender - Indian Cents Basic Set, Proof (1859-1909)
Tom’s set of Proof Indians is virtually ALL cameo, and boasts a weighted GPA of 68.49. Quality like this comes along VERY infrequently, and we are pleased to award him his fourth Gold Star award, and sixth award total for this most impressive set.
The Thomas Irwin Collection - Lincoln Cent Collection (1909-Present)
Lincoln Cents Complete Variety Set, Circulation Strikes and Proof (1909-Present) (Note that the award includes the 15 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) (Note that the award includes the 22 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) The Thomas Irwin Collection is one of the finest collections of Lincoln Cents ever assembled. It contains every date in Mint State and Proof, virtually every major variety, and all in superb condition. In fact, the Weighted GPA for the set is 68.28 and it is just over 97% complete. The true measure of this set is the huge number of zeroes in the Pop Higher column! This collection was first listed in the Registry in 2008 and immediately received Hall of Fame recognition. This is his fifth consecutive Gold Star award, and is more than well-earned!
Wineguy - Shield Two Cents, Circulation Strikes (1864-1872)
Shield Two Cents Classic Set, Circulation Strikes (1864-1872)
(Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) Wineguy was a new entrant in 2011 winning his first Gold Star for Best New Set. We thought a set rating of 67.17, with 6/10 of the coins at the top of the pop charts, would be tough to improve. We were wrong. This collector's set rating is now an impressive 67.33. We are pleased to award him his third Gold Star Award.
David Poole - Three Cent Nickels, Proof (1865-1889)
Three Cent Nickels with Major Varieties, Proof (1865-1889) (Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) With an average grade of 67.94, it’s tough to imagine a better set. A ninth consecutive award for an amazing accomplishment and induction into the PCGS Set Registry Hall of Fame last year pay tribute to this effort.
Simpson - Three Cent Silvers, Circulation Strikes (1851-1872)
Three Cent Silvers with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes (1851-1872) (Note that the award includes the sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) (Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) A new player three years ago, and we cannot recall a more auspicious entry! The Simpson Collections amaze. The very tough 3 Cent Silver Pieces are represented by an astonishing group that includes no fewer than 17 pieces in MS67 or higher with nearly 20 finest-knowns. Despite their small size, these coins are breathtaking jewels in this condition. A fourth Gold Star award for this collecting tour-de-force.
Laura Sperber (Legend Collection) - Three Cent Silvers, Proof (1854-1873)
Three Cent Silvers with Major Varieties, Proof (1854-1873) (Note that the award includes the 3 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) This set was purchased intact three years ago, and now receives its fifth award because the owner continues to upgrade. It is 100% complete and has a set rating of 66.94. At the threshold of perfection.
Just Having Fun - Shield Nickel Collection (1866-1883)
Shield Nickels Basic Set, Circulation Strikes and Proof (1866-1883)
(Note that the award includes the 3 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) Every single coin in the Proof portion of the set (Set rating of 67.49) is a Top Pop, including eight coins that are unique for the grade. Hence, at present, it is unimprovable. That's quite an accomplishment in a series where there is a lot of enthusiasm and competition. The two single sets were inducted into the PCGS Set Registry Hall of Fame last year.
Richard Groman - Liberty Nickels Basic Set, Proof (1883-1912)
With a jaw dropping set rating of 68.02, this set borders on perfection. Only six coins could be improved, and this marks his 11th year in the top spot in the category. We’re proud to award him his fourth Gold Star.
Gerald Forsythe - Buffalo Nickel Collection (1913-1938)
Buffalo Nickels Basic Set, Circulation Strikes (1913-1938)
Buffalo Nickels Basic Set, Proof (1913-1937)
(Note that the award includes the 2 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) Gerald Forsythe has long been the guy to beat in Buffalo Nickels and this year he is again recognized a ninth consecutive time for a set that averages 66.53. That is a singular achievement when one comes face-to-face with the poor quality and luster of some of the branch mint coins. Only a small handful could be improved! The Proofs are as fine a set as can be made, with all eight coins being either finest known or tied for that honor. The set rating of 68.19 says it all. A Hall of Fame set, and an unprecedented 12th consecutive win in the category. Congratulations to Mr. Forsythe for continuing to dominate in an area of great interest and competition.
Simpson - Capped Bust Half Dimes, Circulation Strikes (1829-1837)
Capped Bust Half Dimes with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes (1829-1837)
(Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) Yet another wonder-set, Simpson’s Capped Bust Half dimes are complete (naturally) and over half the set grades MS67 or higher. In fact, only one “pop higher” coin exists for the entire set. Words fail us in describing the quality of this four-time Gold Star award winning set. And how lucky we are that he has shared high-resolution photos of all his coins with us. Check them out if you haven’t already!
Simpson - Liberty Seated Half Dimes, Circulation Strikes (1837-1873)
Liberty Seated Half Dimes with Major Varieties & 1870-S, Circulation Strikes (1837-1873)
(Note that the award includes the 2 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) (Note that the award includes the 2 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) Simpson’s entry into the set registry three years ago made quite a splash, and with sets like this, it’s no surprise. A 100% complete set of Seated Half Dimes, with major varieties and the ultra rare 1870-S, with a rating of 65.27 including no fewer than 45 “top pops.” Tell me that’s not tough to do! Kudos on the fourth consecutive Gold Star award.
Gerry Fortin - Liberty Seated Dimes, Circulation Strikes (1837-1891)
Liberty Seated Dimes with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes (1837-1891)
(Note that the award includes the 4 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) Gerry Fortin is an expert's expert and a deserving annual winner for this series. He has put together the finest collection of Liberty Seated Dimes ever assembled and is the foremost expert in die varieties for this lengthy series. He continually updates his collection and shares his knowledge of this series. His website at http://www.seateddimevarieties.com/ is the definitive reference work for this series. What can we add but his ninth consecutive Gold Star award?
Simpson - Barber Dimes, Circulation Strikes (1892-1916)
Barber Dimes with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes (1892-1916)
(Note that the award includes the sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) (Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) Mr. Simpson’s set of Barber Dimes is the Number One Finest Set of All Time, narrowly eclipsing the previous longtime champion, the Law Collection. Mr. Simpson’s set shows 54 of the 76 coins with a “0” in the “Pop Higher” column. A fourth Gold Star award for a tremendous collecting effort.
Gerald Forsythe – Mercury Dimes FB, Circulation Strikes (1916-1945)
Mercury Dimes FB with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes (1916-1945)
(Note that the award includes the 2 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) After having conquered Buffalo Nickels, Gerald has moved on to Mercury Dimes, and what an effort! Including varieties, the set is 100% complete and all sport Full Bands. This yields an astounding set rating of 69.04. If that’s not enough, look at it this way: Of the 80 coins in the set, 53 have a pop higher of zero! A finer set would be difficult to imagine, much less put together. A well-deserved repeat Gold Star award for this set.
The Ohio Collector - Standing Liberty FH Quarters Basic Set, Circulation Strikes (1916-1930)
With the PCGS Set Registry well into maturity, really outstanding new sets are somewhat infrequent now. This collection certainly breaks that rule. With a set rating of 67.91 in a tough and beautifully designed series, 97% (all but one) of the coins sport full heads and a third of the coins are top pops with none higher. Our congratulations on the first Gold Star award.
Mitchell J. Spivack (Wondercoin) - Washington Quarters, Circulation Strikes (1932-Present)
Washington Quarters with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes (1932-Present)
Note that the award includes the 8 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) While a complete date and mintmark set of Washington Quarters in 67.25 is tough enough, when you add in the five Double Die Obverses and the two 1950 over-mintmarks, the task becomes immeasurably tougher. Replete with “finest knowns” Mitch’s effort is unlikely to be repeated or even approached, anytime soon. Congratulations on a fourth Gold Star award and inclusion in the PCGS Set Registry Hall of Fame.
Dale Friend - Early Half Dollars, Circulation Strikes (1794-1839)
Early Half Dollars with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes (1794-1839)
(Note that the award includes the 2 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) After dominating the Early Half Category for the past six years with a blue star award, we awarded the first of four Gold Stars three years ago. We think a 94% complete collection of halves from 1794 to 1839 with a weighted GPA of 58.65 is pretty neat. The pair of Draped Bust Small Eagle halves in AU50 are reason enough for admiration – and we’re not even mentioning the 1794 in Mint State!
Dr. and Mrs. Peter K. Shireman Collection - Barber Half Dollar Collection, Circulation Strikes (1892-1915)
Barber Half Dollars with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes (1892-1915)
(Note that the award includes the 3 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) At 100% complete and a set rating of 66.10, we congratulate Dr. Shireman on his third Gold Star award. Check out the photos for some gorgeously toned Barber Halves as well as some fascinating reading on the entire set, as well as each date and mint provided by Dr. Shireman. Collectors that generously share both their sets and knowledge, are to be admired and thanked by all.
Kevorkian Collection - Barber Half Dollars, Proof (1892-1915)
A complete Proof Barber Half collection with a set rating above PR68! What can we add, other than a third gold star and our kudos. Although only 25% of the coins are DCAM, the rest are all CAM! Three absolute finest knowns (pop 1, none higher) make this award a slam dunk for the third year in a row.
Gerald Forsythe - Walking Liberty Half Dollar Collection (1916-1947)
Walking Liberty Half Dollars with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes (1916-1947)
Walking Liberty Half Dollars, Proof (1936-1942)
(Note that the award includes the 3 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) It should be evident to all at this point that Gerald Forsythe is among the greatest collectors ever of early 20th century coinage. This magnificent collection of Walking Liberty Half Dollars is back for its fifth Best Classic Award. There are so many wonderful coins in this set that it's hard to know where to start. Coins such as the unique Top Pop 1919-D in PCGS MS66, the 1921-D and 1921-S in MS66 and the equally impressive 1935 in PCGS MS68 make this a set for the ages. The overall GPA is over 66.50 and 44 of the 66 coins sit at the top of the population tables. The Proof set weighs in with a GPA of 68.11, and includes the ONLY proof Walker graded PR69 by PCGS as well as a PR68+! Like his Buffalo Nickel proofs, it cannot be improved, as no date has any coin graded higher.
Tradedollarnut (Legend Collection) -Trade Dollars, Circulation Strikes (1873-1878)
Trade Dollars with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes (1873-1878)
(Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) Of all the sets in the registry, none so dominates its category as this. Get this: Of the 18 coins in the set, 16 have a pop of 1, with NONE HIGHER. One other has a pop of 2, with none finer, and the last coin has a pop of 2, with 1 higher. What can we add, other than a Hall of Fame award and a 9th Gold Star award for 2013. We could go on and on, but we’d prefer you go to the Set Registry page for this incredible set, have a look at the photographs, and read about the coins in the collector’s own words. Doesn’t get any better. Promise.
California I - Morgan Dollars, Circulation Strikes (1878-1921)
Morgan Dollars with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes (1878-1921)
(Note that the award includes the 3 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) The California Collection of Morgan Dollars is an incredible accomplishment because of the extreme difficulty in dominating an area of such intense interest and competition. Over the years, several collectors have built spectacular collections of Morgan Dollars, or have had individual coins of exceptional quality (the name Jack Lee and the Norweb family come to mind). The California Collection continues its reign as the finest Morgan Dollar currently intact. A Hall of Fame set, and receiving its 12th annual award!
David T. Miller and C. Ash Harrison (DT Miller by Ashmore) - Morgan Dollars Prooflike, Circulation Strikes (1878-1921)
Morgan Dollars Prooflike with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes (1878-1921)
(Note that the award includes the 3 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) Back for its eighth annual Best Classic Award, the Miller-Harrison set of Prooflike Morgans is the result of a collaborative effort of an eager collector and an aggressive dealer, which illustrates the importance of getting the right help when building your collection. The end product is the finest collection of Prooflike Morgan Dollars ever assembled. As great as this set is, the owner/dealer will take any opportunity to improve the set, so we expect this set to improve and become even more important in the future. We noted a great deal of progress in the past year and the Prooflike Only with Major Varieties set is now 100% complete, with a Weighted GPA of 66.11 and with 92.31% of the Prooflikes DMPLs.
David T. Miller and C. Ash Harrison (DT Miller by Ashmore) - Morgan Dollars Super Set, Circulation Strikes (1878-1921)
Here’s an amazing set accomplishment. The 328-piece set includes all the major “named” VAM varieties, including no fewer than 96 dated 1878! Miller/Ashmore has managed to acquire 99.09% of the required coins, and currently boasts a set rating of about 61.29, which is certain to improve as this is this set’s very first award. Congratulations on the Gold Star.
California I - Peace Dollars, Circulation Strikes (1921-1935)
Peace Dollars, Circulation Strikes (1921-1935)
(Note that the award includes the 3 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) Like his Morgan Dollar set, the “California I” Peace Dollar set is also the finest ever assembled. Every coin but six is a Top Pop and the set features the only MS67 1923-S and the only MS66 1928-S. Additionally, the 27-S, 34-D and 35-S are pop 2, with none higher. The quality of this set is unmatched in numismatic history and is a perfect continuation of California I's spectacular set of Morgan Dollars. To give you some idea of the incredible quality of this Hall of Fame set, the entire column of “Pop Higher” adds to only 10 pieces. While this can be done occasionally in smaller series, in a popular series such as Peace Dollars it is almost unheard of! An unprecedented 12th annual award is being given this year. To no one’s surprise, a Hall of Fame set as well.
Dr. & Mrs. Steven L. Duckor - One Dollar Gold Date Set of Circulation Strikes 1849-1889
(Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) Another new award winner this year, just a look at the owner’s name will tell you it will again be something very special. How about debuting with a completion of 100% and a Set Rating of 67.18! Steven Duckor has brought us a set that will serve as a reference for years to come. Not only is this far and away the best Current set, but is also the finest set of all time. Two thirds of the coins are already “0 pop higher.
The Donald A. Kutz $2 1/2 Indian Collection - Indian Head $2-1/2 Gold Basic Set, Circulation Strikes (1908-1929)
(Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) The Donald Kutz $2.5 Indian set wins its ninth consecutive Best Classic set award. All but three of the coins are the finest graded and the set includes the finest MS66+ example of the 1911-D (the Norweb-Bass specimen) the key date in the series and one of the most important gold coins of the 20th century. The set also has the only MS67 example of the key date 1914. With a Set Rating just north of MS66, collectors of Indian Gold know how tough this accomplishment is.
The Great Lakes Collection -$3 Gold No 1870-S Basic Set, Circulation Strikes (1854-1889)
The “Great Lakes Collection” of three dollar gold pieces is an amazing assemblage of top quality coins. It is the finest known by over full two grade points and blows away the Eliasberg, Bass, and Smithsonian collections! The majority of the coins in this collection (27/40) are Top Pops, including many that are unique for the grade. At 100% complete with a Set Rating of 64.89, this set is fully deserving of its eighth Best Classic Gold Star award.
Tom Bender - $3 Gold, Proof (1854-1889)
$3 Gold with Major Varieties and 1855-S, Proof (1854-1889)
(Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) With the acquisition of the extraordinarily rare 1855-S Proof $3, Tom’s set now appears in this new category. And what a set it is! As rare as Proof $3’s are in any grade, what about a set that is 95% complete with a weighted GPA of 66.20! Twenty-three of the thirty-nine coins sit at the top of the pop charts. With pedigrees that include Garrett, Bass and Trompeter, this set is a welcome addition to the Registry and fully deserving of its second Gold Star award.
Simpson -Indian Head $10 Gold Basic Set, Circulation Strikes (1907-1933)
Like Simpson’s other sets, this one is amazing as well. With fully one third of the coins absolute finest knowns, nearly two thirds “unimprovable” and a Set Rating of 66.36, it surpasses the former champions, Jim O’Neal and the Kutasi Collection. Exactly half of the coins grade MS67 or higher! The current finest by a wide margin, and fully deserving of its place in the Hall of Fame and its fourth Gold Star award.
Simpson -St. Gaudens $20 Gold with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes (1907-1932)
The addition of the Simpson sets was a major highlight of the Set Registry in 2010, and this Saint Gaudens set explains why. It is 100% complete, and boasts a Set Rating of 66.09 including a 27-D in MS66, a 20-S in MS65, a 30-S in MS66, a 31-P in MS66 and a 29-P in MS66+. We could go on, but you get the idea. Like his other sets, Simpson has generously shared photographs of his coins, and we encourage you to have a look for yourself at what a GEM set of Saint’s looks like. Well deserving of its fourth consecutive Gold Star award.
The San Diego Collection - Silver Commemoratives 50 Piece Type Set, Circulation Strikes (1892-1954)
The top spot for the silver commem type set is hotly contested between the San Diego Collection and the J&L Commemorative Type Set. This year, the San Diego set came out on top – by a whopping .04 points! A set rating of 67.66 gives you some idea of how high grade this set is, because there are no “bonuses” in Commemoratives. 42 of the 50 coins show none graded higher, so the competition between these two sets will be largely driven by future submissions.
Paul Denby - Gold Commemoratives, Circulation Strikes (1903-1926)
Gold Commemoratives 13 Piece Set, Circulation Strikes (1903-1926)
(Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) The Paul Denby gold commemorative collection is the finest ever assembled. An amazing 10 of the 13 coins grade MS67 and the $50 Pan-Pacs grade MS65 and MS64. This is a small set of big importance. This is his sixth consecutive Gold Star award.
Best Modern Sets of 2013
Mitchell J. Spivack (Wondercoin) - Top 100 Modern Coins
This set has some of the best if not the best coins in the modern era. There are a number of coins in this set that many collectors have dreamed of such as the 1969-S Double Die Lincoln Cent, the No S Proof Coins, the Cheerios Dollar, the Wisconsin Extra leaf Quarters, the mysterious 1964 Special Mint Sets and numerous popular Doubled Die coins. This set is one of the most exciting sets, if not the most exiting set, that a collector can build in the modern era category. Mitch has done an exemplary job.
Greg Rivers (The Sugarfree Chaos Collection) - Silver, Gold & Platinum Eagle Complete Set, Circulation Strikes (1986-present)
The Sugarfree Chaos Collection of Silver, Gold and Platinum Eagles has over 100 perfect coins in the set, despite some of the coins having very low populations in MS70. Greg has continued to update and upgrade the set, now with a set rating of 69.745!
Goldminer's Collection - Silver, Gold & Platinum Eagles Complete Set, Circulation Strikes and Proof (1986-present)
What a fabulous set! Goldminer’s Collection has an example of every single Mint State and Proof Silver, Gold and Platinum eagle in every possible denomination of $1, $5, $10, $25, $50 and $100. This set has definitely taken a lot of time and patience to complete, but in the end, it looks like it all paid off as this collector has one amazing set.
AU_Hobby - Lincoln Memorial Cents Complete Variety Set, Circulation Strikes (1959-2008)
Although not complete, this set demands attention. All but three of the required varieties are registered and considering that the complete variety sets are works in progress with varieties being added as they are recognized by PCGS, makes this accomplishment all the more meaningful. All but two of the varieties are Mint State. Eight of the coins in the set are the finest graded. Congratulations on a great job!
eyeappealing 1 - Lincoln Cents Complete Variety Set, Proof (1950-1958)
Eyeappealing 1 did a fabulous job of finding some great examples of Proof Lincoln cents from the 1950s. His set includes several of the finest coins of Proof Wheat Lincoln cents in existence. Some dates are very rare with Cameo or Deep Cameo surfaces including the 1953 Proof Lincoln cent. Eyeappealing 1 managed to acquire a 1953 DDO (FS-101) in PR66 with the rare Deep Cameo designation for this very tough issue.
Reynolds - Lincoln Memorial Cents Complete Variety Set, Proof (1959-2008)
We really enjoyed reading Reynold's detailed comments about how he acquired most of his coins. It takes you back to the place where he bought the coins and makes you appreciate it much more. He has built a very fun set with many Proof Memorial cent varieties, some of which are very scarce with less than 5 known. Others are in very high grades and some are the finest grade for that variety. It is clear that it has taken this collector a long time to find every single variety and the effort shows.
High Desert - Jefferson Nickels FS, Circulation Strikes (1938-1964)
Jefferson Nickels FS with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes (1938-1964)
(Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) What a beautiful montage of some of the best Jefferson Nickels that exist and they are all in this one set. There are numerous Pop 1 coins with none being finer in the High Desert Collection. Although the set is closed from public view, when this collector decides to open it up, the viewer will be treated with high quality images for every single coin.
The Corso Collection - Jefferson Nickels FS Collection (1938-Present)
Jefferson Nickels FS with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes and Proof (1938-present)
(Note that the award includes the 15 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) The Corso Collection continues to dominate in this category, remaining in the top spot over a decade! The owner should take pride in orchestrating such a significant set of Jefferson Nickels. Almost every coin has been imaged and displayed very elegantly in his set. Many of the coins are the finest in existence for circulating Jefferson Nickels with Full Steps. We are thrilled to recognize this set for another year.
Steve Strom - Jefferson Nickels FS Complete Variety Set, Circulation Strikes (1938-Present)
(Note that the award includes the 2 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) Now for the fourth year in a row, Steve has remained in the number one spot. He has assembled a high grade set with more than 30 different varieties. Some of the varieties have single digit populations with none finer. The owner of the set has showed a lot of dedication, as he has made several of the varieties and upgrades himself. Last year the set was missing only one elusive variety. This year, the set is complete.
Ray Overby - Jefferson Nickels FS Complete Variety Set, Circulation Strikes (1965-Present)
(Note that the award includes the 2 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) Ray Overby’s set contains many single finest examples of post-1964 Circulation Strike Jefferson Nickels. 80 of the coins in the set are “Top Pops” and of these coins a number of them have a population of one and with none graded finer. This is a very impressive set of Jefferson Nickels with the Full Steps designation.
ErasmusHall - Roosevelt Dimes FB, Circulation Strikes (1946-Present)
Roosevelt Dimes FB with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes (1946-Present)
(Note that the award includes the 5 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) Always improving and clearly dedicated, this collector has strived to reach the very pinnacle of this series. Nearly every coin is imaged and beautifully toned. Congratulations!
MGM Collection - Roosevelt Dimes Basic Set, Proof (1950-present)
Now, for the third year in a row, this set has won a Best Modern Set award. With an improved Deep Cameo designation from 92.50% to 92.68%, the set continues to dominate in the category. Nearly every coin is a “Top Pop.” This set is uniformly beautiful.
Dimeman - Roosevelt Dimes FB Complete Variety Set, Circulation Strikes (1965-Present)
This is a very challenging set as it has many tough coins from circulation. Finding some of these coins is a huge challenge, since they made them by the hundreds of millions and some of them even by the billions. Imagine having to find one of the best 2003-P Dimes out of the more than 1 billion coins that were struck. Look no more, as most of the best modern day dimes are in this set.
GRFN - Franklin Half Dollars FBL, Circulation Strikes (1948-1963)
Franklin Half Dollars FBL Basic Set, Circulation Strikes (1948-1963)
What a monster of a set! The GRFN collection has a coin from every date of the Circulation Strike Franklin Half Dollars in superb condition. Almost every coin is the finest for the grade with the Full Bell Lines designation. Several of the coins have a population of one in MS67 FBL with none being finer. A truly impressive set. GRFN has won a major award for the past six years defeating even the Hall of Fame winning set, JFS some years ago. GRFN retired his set shortly after the awards deadline, but it will be difficult to outrank it in the All-Time Finest category.
EBL III Collection - Franklin Half Dollars, Proof (1950-1963)
Franklin Half Dollars with Major Varieties, Proof (1950-1963)
(Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) It doesn’t appear that this Hall of Fame set will ever slip in ranking. When you view this set you can see why it has won a major award every year since 2005. The EBL Collection III of Franklin Half Dollar Proofs is simply amazing. Coins from the 1950s are known to be very scarce with Cameo and even more so with the Deep Cameo designation. However, The EBL Collection has done a tremendous job by acquiring the nicest Franklin Proof examples that are available and placing them in this one set. Every coin is Deep Cameo except for the 1961 Doubled Die Reverse and that coin, graded MS67 Cameo, is the single finest graded. Wow!
Northcoast - Franklin Half Dollars FBL Complete Variety Set, Circulation Strikes (1948-1963)
This set is so close to being complete, missing only one coin. Besides that, it has some great coins including almost all of the Franklin Half Dollar varieties. Some of the varieties can be very difficult to obtain and especially with the FBL designation. Northcoast has definitely put a lot of hard work into this set and it looks like it’s going to be very challenging to upgrade many of these coins. To the owner, we know you will be able to do it as you have done an impressive job so far.
Caleb Clough (The Acadia Collection) - Kennedy Half Dollar Collection (1964-Present)
Kennedy Half Dollars with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes and Proof (1964-Present)
(Note that the award includes the 5 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) This Young Numismatist has done a wonderful job at building an outstanding collection. Caleb has managed to secure some of the highest graded varieties in existence. Several coins have single digit populations with none being finer. We look forward to see where this collector goes in the future.
Nick Shelton - Kennedy Half Dollar Collection (1964-Present)
Kennedy Half Dollars with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes and Proof (1964-Present)
(Note that the award includes the 4 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) Like his YN counterpart, Nick’s set, which matches the number one rating of Caleb’s set, is filled with many “Top Pops.” Hailing from the legendary Richard Green collection is Nick’s 1964-D Kennedy Half in MS68 condition with a population of one with none finer… a simply amazing coin. It has been fun watching these two young and very amazing collectors, Caleb and Nick, compete in this horse race.
PDShad - Kennedy Half Dollars Collection (1964-Present)
Kennedy Half Dollars with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes and Proof (1964-Present)
(Note that the award includes the 6 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) The PD Shad’s Complete JFK Collection is another set that continues to dominate year after year. Winning a major award since 2006 in the basic circulation strike and proof set, this year his combination major variety set tied the Clough and Shelton sets at the time of the awards deadline (It's now in the #1 spot!) One look at the combination set and you can see why the judges continue to recognize this collector’s achievement. This is an extremely challenging set yet this collector continues to improve it, increasing his set rating every year. Is there still room for improvement? Yes, but not much!
Sonoran Monsoon - Susan B. Anthony Dollars, Circulation Strikes (1979-1981, 1999)
Susan B. Anthony Dollars with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes (1979-1981, 1999)
(Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) Although the Susan B. Anthony Dollar is a short set compared to most other U.S. coin sets, this set cannot be taken lightly. The Sonoran Monsoon Set of Susan B. Anthony Dollars contains several of the finest Susan B. Anthony Dollars from circulation. This includes the first year of issue, the 1979-P in PCGS MS68 Pop 1 with none being finer. Imagine the first year the coins were struck. The public was excited about the new coins with tens of millions of them going into circulation. The finest first year issue in existence now resides in this set. Simply amazing to say the least!
Brandywine Sacagawea Collection - Sacagawea Dollar Collection (2000-present)
Sacagawea Dollars with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes and Proof (2000-present)
(Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) This set is 100% complete and almost every single coin has an image displayed. The set contains all mint state coins, proof coins and including the Satin Finish coins. Many of the coins have single digit populations with none being finer.
James Elsmore (JE) - Presidential Dollars First Day of Issue, Circulation Strikes (2007-2016)
Presidential Dollars First Day of Issue Complete Variety Set with Edge Errors, Circulation Strikes (2007-2011)
(Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) For the sixth year in a row, James has landed in the top spot. This set is very challenging because not only does it require all the varieties such as the Missing Edge Lettering varieties, but each coin must be First Day of Issue. No other collector in this category comes close. Great job!
Louis J. Kalman, Jr. (LJK's Complete Presidential Dollars) - Presidential Dollar with Edge Errors Collection (2007-2016)
Presidential Dollars Complete Set with Edge Errors, Circulation Strikes and Satin Finish (2007-2016)
(Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) What a challenging set. This set has coins with Position A and Position B and includes the different edge errors. Some of the weak edge, partial edge, doubled edge and no edge errors are very hard to come by. Some of them have populations of less than a handful yet LJK has managed to find many of them for this very challenging set.
The Good Collection - Modern Commemoratives, Proof (1982-present)
The Good Collection should have written a book on Modern Proof Commemoratives as he has created a beautiful collage of all commemoratives with descriptions to each one. The set is very nicely presented with practically every coin assigned a perfect PR70 grade with the exception of just two coins. What a great way to present such a fabulous set.
Sam Eltonhead (Sam's Complete Modern Set) -Modern Commemoratives Complete Set, Circulation Strikes and Proof (1982-present)
Another multi-year award winner, Sam’s Complete Modern Set is one fascinating set to say the least. He has every Modern Silver Commemorative coin in mint state and proof condition. Most coins are in perfect MS70 and PR70 Deep Cameo condition. This is a very fun set due to all the different designs. Take a peek. Many of the coins are imaged. Congratulations once again!
Best Mint and Proof Sets of 2013
Palmetto Galleries - 1881 Proof Set with Gold
How about an 1881 Proof Set with Gold, in an average grade of 67.57? Palmetto Galleries has assembled just such a set, and every coin but one is at the top of the pop charts. Only the $3 can be improved, as the set has ONLY a PR66CA now. The lone PR67CA resides in Tom Bender’s Proof $3 set, also awarded this year. Congratulations on an outstanding set and a fourth Gold Star award.
Lifetime – 1931 Mint Set with Gold
(Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) Due to the depression, coinage production in the early 1930s was sporadic at best, with many denominations skipping several years between 1930 and 1934. The Lifetime 1931 Mint Set is notable as it contains both of the double eagles from that very tough year. We’re pleased to award this set its second Gold Star.
New Hampshire Set - 1936-1942 Proof Set
This 38-piece set contains all the modern pre-war proof issues between 1936 and 1942 including both the satin and brilliant 1936 cent and nickel and both types of 1942 Nickel. With the retirement of the MKJ collection, the New Hampshire Set now ranks as the current finest, and with a set rating of 67.46, it is a most worthy successor. Roughly a third of the coins are top pop examples, and nearly all carry CAC stickers.
ErasmusHall - 1936-Present Proof Set
1936-Present Proof Set with Major Varieties
(Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) Erasmus Hall is no stranger in the world of coin collecting as he has continued to build some amazing sets over the years. This year is no different and his 1968-Present Proof Set showcases some of the great coins he has acquired. In past years, this collector has won gold for his 1936-Present Mint Set. This year we're honoring his proof set.
Paul Covey (psc) - 1950-Present Mint Set with Major Varieties
This set is definitely being built the old fashioned way, which is the hard way, but the right way. It has 98.89% completion yet it contains many examples in some of the highest grades possible. It has most coins from 1950 to date from every single mint. Definitely a lot of patience, hard work and talent has been put into this tough set. Congratulations on building a very worthwhile set.
Clif's Proofs - 1968-Present Proof Set with Major Varieties
Clif’s Proofs has put together a wonderful set of Proof coins from 1968 to date. It even has the coveted 1990 No S Proof Lincoln Cent which is very challenging to obtain. Many of the other proof coins are in perfect PR70 condition while the earlier dates are in some of the highest grades possible. Great job!
Best Colonials, Private Issues & Territorial Gold and Patterns Sets of 2012
Alamo Collection - Early American Coins and Tokens Basic Design Set (1616-1820)
The Alamo Collection contains high-grade examples of virtually every Colonial type. The weighted GPA of 57.50 means that most of the coins are Mint State, which is quite an accomplishment any time Colonial coins are involved.
Alamo Collection - Rosa Americana and Hibernia Coinage Basic Set (1722-1724)
This is a set of Rosa Americana and Hibernia coinage types that includes one of every date and denomination. This set has a weighted GPA of 62.304, and 8 out of the 13 coins in this set are Top Pops!
Fall River Collection - Utah Gold (Mormon 1849-1860)
This small, but important, set contains some of the rarest, most interesting coins in American numismatics. Besides being complete, this set contains nice, high-grade Mormon Gold, including a Finest Known 1850 $5 and the uber-rare Mormon $20. This set is an example of what can be accomplished by a serious specialist.
Robert H. Lande - California Fractional Gold - Complete Collection, Period One
California Fractional Gold - Complete Collection, Period One (Note that the award includes the 6 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) Mr. Lande’s stated goal is “to collect as complete and high grade a set of Period 1 California Small Denomination Gold coins as possible.” Many of the Period One fractional gold coins actually circulated as money in the years following the discovery of gold in California. Thus, most are of extreme rarity and/or they are difficult to locate in high grade. This collection is nearly complete (88.32%, with a GPA of 60.19) and includes several pieces that are represented by only one or two surviving examples. Many of the coins are unique Top Pops!
The Oregon Collection - California Fractional Gold - Complete Collection, Period One & Two
This is a massive collection that, when complete, will contain 562 coins. This set is currently 67.97% complete with a weighted GPA of 61.84. No other set (in the PCGS Set Registry, of course) is better or more complete with the exception of the Jay Roe Collection, which was broken up in 2003. No other set comes anywhere close today. This set has a great future.
Just Having Fun - Philippines Collection (1903-1945)
Philippines Complete Classic Set, Circulation Strikes (1903-1945)
Philippines Complete Set, Proof (1903-1908)
(Note that the award includes the 16 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) The owner of this incredible collection of Philippines coins admits “this has been one of the hardest collections I have ever put together,” and he has had many award winning sets in the PCGS Set Registry. Apparently, some of the coins have been ungraded; most significantly, the 1906-S Peso is now an MS-62, compared with last year’s MS-61. Besides being 100% complete and now including the proofs, this collection is riddled with coins that are unique, Top Pop condition rarities.
The Mark Hagen Collection (boiler78) - Flying Eagle and Indian Head Cents - Short Set (1858)
In 1858, the U.S. Mint sold 12-piece sets of Small Cents that included 11 Flying Eagle and Indian Head patterns and a Proof regular issue "Flyer". Mr. Hagen’s is the finest of four complete sets listed in the PCGS Set Registry. The presence of five unique Top Pops ensures this set’s dominant position.
Best Low Ball Sets of 2013
Pocket Piece - Complete U.S. Type Set, Low Ball (1792-1964)
(Note that the award includes the 2 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) While most collectors try to find the BEST coins, this collector seeks the WORST examples of each type. He has continued to downgrade his set with the addition of some really awful gold, many of the pieces Pop 1, which means they are single worst possible coins. Take a look at his $2.5 Indian. Yuck. We say this all tongue in cheek, because in reality, this is a super set!
Friends in Low Places - Liberty Nickels, Low Ball (1883-1912)
What a crappy set...and we mean that in a good way! And, this complete set has gotten even worse over the past year, down from an incredibly low GPA of 1.79 to 1.76. We like the owner's comment: "Imagine all the places these "Friends" have been and the happiness they gave when they were spent." Collecting is not just about coins, but the stories they tell.
Buffalo Hunter - Buffalo Nickels, Low Ball (1913-1938)
This herd is well worn. While many of the coins are not PO1, they are still the lowest possible example known. There are Pop 1s all over the place. Buffalo Hunter created this set only a year ago and now sits on top with 100% completion and close to the lowest graded set possible. Good job to someone looking for only the worst.
The Hollis Collection - Barber Half Dollars, Low Ball (1892-1915)
Springing on the scene only this year, this collector jumped to the number one rank immediately with a 4.76 GPA. Now, at 100% complete, the owner has lowered the GPA to 4.42. Because there is wiggle room we expect, with this collector’s dedication to find only the very worst, we’ll see an even lower GPA in the coming year.
Sourdough (End of the Trail) - Morgan Dollars Basic Set, Low Ball (1878-1921)
(Note that the award includes the 5 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) Sourdough has definitely taken low ball collecting to a new level. His Morgan sets are not only the lowest grade ever assembled, they are the lowest grade by a large margin. Not only does Sourdough have the “best” low ball Morgan dollar complete basic set (again by a large margin), he also has the best Date Set, Carson City, New Orleans, Philadelphia, and San Francisco low ball sets. Morgan dollar low ball collecting is quite challenging and Sourdough has done a remarkable job of building his low ball sets. Check out his set description. It will give you an idea of this collector’s dedication to find the best of the worst.
Jimmy Austin's Best of the Worst - Peace Dollars, Low Ball (1921-1935)
Like the Morgan set, the Peace dollar set is very challenging when you get to the really low grades. This set has an average grade of 1.47 and no coins in the set are higher than FR02! Although there are 26 other challengers, no one comes close to Jimmy’s really awful set.
Not Mint To Be--Pocketpiece Commemoratives - Silver Commemoratives 50 Piece Type Set, Low Ball (1892-1954)
A nearly impossible set to complete in super low grade as many of the 1934-1938 issues were not circulated at the time of issue. The 50 piece silver commem type set is one of the “kings” of low ball collecting and this set is the “best” we’ve ever seen. Pocket piece continues to work on his set and downgrade wherever possible. This year, the GPA went a measly 12.49 to 12.23, a credit to this collector’s dedication. If you want to see a truly "beautiful" coin, check out the Monroe in P01.
Best Everyman Sets of 2013
Mi¢hael Hassler, Master Sergeant, USAF, Retired Combat Air Crew Member & Vietnam Veteran - Everyman Lincoln Cents (1909-1958)
Last year this veteran won an award for his Indian Cents. This year he is being recognized for his Lincolns. His complete set has a rating of 58.02 which means that every coin is 58 with a plus thrown in for good measure. It’s just about as good as you can get in the Everyman category. Congratulations!
Joseph M. Wojteczko (Beancounter I) - Everyman Barber Dimes (1892-1916)
Barber coins are very difficult to find in nice AU condition. It seems like all survivors are in either Good or Mint State condition, with very few in-between. Beancounter has done a great job of building a complete set of AU Barber dimes.
Long Beach AU FH Set - Everyman Standing Liberty Quarters (1916-1930)
Last year this collector’s set had every coin in AU58 except for one. That is no longer the case. The set is complete with every coin a uniform AU58. This set is going to be hard to improve and almost impossible to beat.
Merrill Collection - Everyman Early Half Dollars (1794-1839)
This is a really cool set of Half Dollars, including the elusive 1796 and 1797 dates. Though we call this an "Everyman" set, it's a pretty powerful one. This year, the owner has improved the GPA from an impressive 45.61 to 45.85 and every coin sports a legitimate PCGS grade (no Genuines). It takes a real collector to put together a set like this.
BarberNut - Everyman Barber Half Dollars (1892-1915)
Since 2011 BarberNut has been slowly improving the coins in this set. At the end of 2012, he reached the number one spot with a GPA of 55.23. Today, the set has a GPA of 56.16, a testament to this collector’s drive and passion to have the best set in the category. This is not only BarberNut’s first award, it’s a well-deserved gold!
Brad's Everyman Peace $'s - Everyman Peace Dollars (1921-1935)
Brad’s Peace Dollar set tops the All-Time Finest list, besting two complete retired sets. About a year ago he achieved a nearly unbeatable GPA of 58.09 which means there are four in the set graded AU58+. The set is beautifully displayed with every coin imaged.
Best African Sets of 2013
Tom Mendenhall (Toms, Proof gold Kugerrands) - South African Krugerrand, Proof (1967-Present)
The Kruggerrand was once the most important gold coin in the world. Millions of Mint State examples were sold to bullion buyers, but the smart buyers purchased the much rarer Proof versions. This collection is complete from 1967 to 2002, inclusive, so we’re hopeful that it will be finished someday. However, in the meantime, we’re impressed by the overall quality and the level of difficulty that this set represents.
SWvdM - South African George VI Denomination Type Set, Proof (1937-1952)
This is a beautifully matched 1952 Proof Set that includes every denomination in exceptional condition. The lowest grade on any coin is PR66 and seven of the eleven coins are Top Pops.
Best Asian Sets of 2013
OnlyBuffalos - British Hong Kong Large Cents, Circulation Strikes (1919-1934)
Asian, Chinese, and Hong Kong coins are among the hottest coins in the world right now. This set is a top condition set of the Large Cents issued by Hong Kong early in the 20th century. The weighted GPA is 66.200 and one of the coins is a unique Top Pop.
The London Coin Company Ltd. - Panda Gold 5 & 20 Yuan (1/20oz) with Varieties, Circulation Strikes (1983-present)
This is an impressive collection, complete in every respect. Amazingly, all but two of the coins are Top Pops, and four of the coins are unique Top Pops. At this level, this set was hard to complete and it will be hard to beat.
GDH - Panda Gold 10 & 50 Yuan (1/10oz), Circulation Strikes (1982-present)
This is a complete set of 1/10 ounce gold Chinese Pandas, and every single one of them is either MS69 or better. Most of the coins were purchased out of the market, but this collector also “made” a few of his own. This is a continuing set, and was updated last year to include the new annual issue in MS70 condition.
Anil Gupta - India Colonial British Denomination Complete Set, Circulation Strikes and Proof (1835-1947)
India is an emerging hot market, especially for the British Colonial coins. This set is particularly tough because most of the coins are from the 1800s and they are difficult to locate in top grades. This set is 76% complete and has a weighted GPA of 63.632.
RW Israel Pruta Set - Israel Pruta Complete Set, Circulation Strikes (1949-1954)
This is a great set which gives a good overview of regular issue Israeli coinage. Only one coin is missing, but those that are included are truly exceptional. Lots of them are Top Pops and a couple are unique Top Pops. This is the first award for this deserving set.
Ted Wydeven, Sr. (T&JW) - Japanese Gold Denomination Set (1870-1932)
This is a complete denomination set of Japanese gold coins, ranging in denomination from the small 1 Yen to the larger 20 Yen. All of the coins are Gems and three are Top Pops. This is the eighth year this set has been honored. 100% complete with a weighted GPA of 66.00.
Hetman - Kazakhstan Silver 500 Tenge, Proof (2000-present)
This set caught our attention because of its size, the level of completion and the overall quality. All of these are low mintage coins. All but one of the coins in this set is a Top Pop and the GPA is an amazing 69.116.
Hetman - Kyrgyzstan Silver 10 Som, Proof (1995-present)
Kyrgyzstan is one of the several “-stan” countries that broke away from the Soviet Union. In 1995, they began issuing large 10 Som silver coins in Proof condition. In some years, one coin was issued; in others, as many as 10 different coins might have been issued. This set lacks only one coin and every coin in the set is a unique Top Pop!
Mandate Mints! - Palestine Complete Set, Circulation Strikes (1927-1946)
This is a monster set of Palestinian coins that showed up suddenly on the PCGS Set Registry in 2011. In the last year, the owner finally completed the set, yielding a GPA of 64.562. This is a big set full of Top Pop coins, indicating a tremendous effort on the part of the owner. We suspect this set will be even better by next year.
Prof Dr Selvaraj Y Subramaniam (skandakumera) - British Sarawak Complete Set, Circulation Strikes (1863-1941)
This set, while far from complete, gets an “A” for effort. Many of the coins are difficult to locate, especially in nice condition. There are some great coins in this set, including quite a few unique Top Pops.
Best European Sets of 2013
Evergreen - Austrian 25 Euro Silver Commemoratives, Circulation Strikes (2003-present)
Euro coins are very popular with collectors, no matter which country issues them. This complete set, all in MS69 or better, is particularly attractive because of the interesting colorations that come out each year.
Caranett - Belgium Gold 20 Francs Date Set, Circulation Strikes (1865-1882)
This is the fourth award for this impressive set. The Belgium 20 Franc has long been considered a bullion type coin, thus little attention was paid to collecting high grade examples. Every coin is a Top Pop except for the rare 1869, where only one coin is better.
Caranett - Denmark 20 Gold Kroner, Circulation Strikes (1873-1917)
Caranett has done a wonderful job of building a set of high grade examples of these Danish gold coins. Virtually all of the coins are Top Pops and the weighted GPA is an impressive 65.467.
Caranett - French 20 Francs Gold Angel, Circulation Strikes (1871-1898)
A wonderful set of 20 Francs from the last part of the 19th century. Many of these coins are difficult to locate in any grade, so achieving 100% completion is difficult and doing so with an overall GPA of 64.93 is an even greater feat. Congratulations!
Virginia Transplant (thush) - French Indo-China Colony Cent, Circulation Strikes (1885-1943)
This is a most impressive set that is not only large, but difficult to complete. At a 98% completion level and with a GPA of 60.71, this set is full of Top Pops and a fair number of unique Top Pops.
Gray/Huber Dream Set - German States 3 Mark Type Set, Proof (1908-1918)
This is a virtually complete set of 3 Marks from the German States, lacking only the ultra-rare Saxony ("Frederick the Wise"). The overall condition is simply amazing. Virtually every coin is either a Top Pop, an extreme rarity, or both. This is one of those sets that would be impossible to replicate, even with unlimited resources. As of this writing, the set is 97.22% complete and the overall GPA is 67.54, indicating a slight upgrade from last year.
The Sheffield Collection XIV - German 1/2 Mark Basic Set, Circulation Strikes (1905-1919)
(Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) Sheffield has done a great job over the past couple of years in building this set of German Half Marks. Sheffield’s underlying date set is 100% complete, but this set includes all of the dates and mints issued by Germany from 1905 to 1919. This set is now 91% complete with a weighted GPA of 64.91. We know the owner of this set, and we are certain this set will be bigger and better next year.
The Sheffield Collection XIII - German 1 Mark Basic Set, Circulation Strikes (1873-1916)
The challenge of this set is its size – 192 silver coins issued between 1873 and 1916. This is the first award for this set, and we suspect it is the first of many, as the owner is an enthusiastic collector who is constantly looking to fill holes and/or upgrade. Just for the record, this set is 2/3 complete with a weighted GPA of 64.18.
Wybrit - British Victoria Halfpenny Date Set, Circulation Strikes (1838-1901)
Queen Victoria reigned for a long time, which means this is a big set. The owner has done a great job in building this set, and the presentation, with all its great images, is superb. Check out this impressive set.
Wybrit - British Victoria Six Pence Date Set, Circulation Strikes (1838-1901)
What Wybrit has done with his Victorian Halfpenny set is repeated in this silver Sixpence set. Beautiful coin and superb presentation. This is what collecting (and showing off your collection) is all about. 95% complete with a weighted GPA of 65.03.
CB Gold Collection - British Commonwealth Sovereigns Complete Set George V, Circulation Strikes (1910-1936)
(Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.)
This is an amazing set of the gold Sovereigns issued by and for various countries during the reign of British King George V. A commenter on this set summed it up: “awesome set , i hope you complete the set one day , as it is a task that has probably never been achieved.” 92.77% complete with a weighted GPA of 63.55.
Gene Maguire (Gene1865) - Irish 1/2 Crown Date Set with Mule, Circulation Strikes (1928-1967)
(Note that the award includes the 1 sub-set in this collection which is ranked #1.) The luck of the Irish is evident in this 100% complete collection. These were the largest denomination issued by Ireland and each coin sports a horse and a harp (for those of you who are topical collectors).
Caranett - Italy 20 Lire, Circulation Strikes (1880-1897)
Caranett has award winning sets in other World gold categories, so a great set like this is not unexpected. As with Caranett's French 20 Francs set, this one is hard to complete and difficult to find in top grades. Here again, Caranett has accomplished 100% completion at a GPA level of 63.87. Most impressive!
tompoll1 - Polish 20 Zlotych Silver Commemoratives, Proof (1995-Present)
The Polish Mint has been very creative in its designs and even the shapes of its coins, as evidenced in this set. With 61 coins, this is a mid-sized set and Tompoll1 has done a good job of acquiring mostly Top Pop examples.
rosswb - Russian Rouble Emperor Set (1689-1917)
Russian Roubles are arguably the hottest coins in the planet, which means a lot of collectors compete for them and drive prices up. This set is 100% complete, begins in 1720 and ends in 1913, with every Russian emperor represented in between. This set is pure history.
rosswb - Russian Nicholas I Roubles, Circulation Strikes (1826-1858)
This is an incredibly difficult set to collect. Completing it is nearly impossible (rosswb is at 50.91%) and finding these coins in high grade only adds to the difficulty (this set has a weighted GPA of 48.00). We’ll be keeping an eye on this set to see what improvements are made in the coming year. Keep up the good work.
Layb's Euros - 1999-2002 Spain Euro Complete Set
Euro sets offer tremendous variety. Some collectors focus on one denomination, some focus on one country, some focus on one year. Layb has focused on all denomination and all dates of the Euro coins issued by Spain. This is the fifth award for this set which is currently at 90% completion and a weighted GPA of 66.08.
Caranett - Sweden 20 Kronor, Circulation Strikes (1873-1925)
Caranett is the king of gold coins. This set is only two coins shy of completion and every coin is a Top Pop. The weighted GPA is an even 66.00, indicating the superb quality of these eighteenth and nineteenth century coins.
The Sheffield Collection XIX - Swiss 1/2 Silver Franc, Circulation Strikes (1850-1967)
This is a remarkable, 100% complete collection in super-high grade. Many of the coins are Top Pops and quite a few are unique for their grade. Assembling this collection was quite an accomplishment. As predicted, the GPA for this set moved from 65.28 to 65.42 thanks to some upgrading and we expect to see it go up again next year. The best just keeps getting better.
The Sheffield Collection XX - Swiss 1 Silver Franc, Circulation Strikes (1850-1967)
This is a large, comprehensive set of Swiss 1 Francs, each coin the size of a US Quarter Dollar and often equated with the US Barber Quarter series. The owner has done a great job of filling in most of the holes with high-grade examples. As with Sheffield’s ½ Franc set, we expect this set to get better every year. This year, the set is 94.92% complete and has a weighted GPA of 65.475.
The Sheffield Collection XXI - Swiss 2 Silver Francs, Circulation Strikes (1850-1967)
This year we add Sheffield’s 2 Francs set to his string of award-winning sets. This one is currently 88.68% complete, with a weighted GPA of 65.276. Count on it being bigger and/or better next year.
Anteater Collection - Swiss 20 Gold Francs Complete Set, Circulation Strikes (1883-1949)
There is a lot of gold in this set, thus the cost of attempting it limits the number of people who accept the challenge. Not so with Anteater, who has not only built a great set, but has been going after quality as well. There are several Top Pops in this set., including some unique Top Pops.
Bill Goode (WJG Swiss Shooting Talers) - Swiss Shooting Festival Commemoratives, Circulation Strikes (1842-1939)
An outstanding set of Swiss "Shooters" that is one coin shy of completion and which has an overall GPA of 64.62. This is a remarkably high level considering that most of the coins are from the 1800s! If you're not familiar with these coins, check them out. They are good-sized coins that all have interesting designs.
Rod Moore Schützenfest - Modern Thalers - Swiss Shooting Festival Commemoratives 50 Francs (1984-present)
This set of Swiss "Shooters" reprises a tradition that began in the mid-1800s of celebrating shooting competitions. These are beautiful coins of very low mintage, made for sale to collectors. This set is complete and includes numerous Top Pops and unique condition-rarities. Overall GPA: an amazing 69.103, reflecting the continuous upgrading of this already impressive set.
Tryzub - Ukraine Commemoratives Complete Set Reform Coinage (1996-Present)
(Note that the award includes the 6 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) This set is massive…who knew! At 497 coins, Tryzub clocks in at 98.79% complete with a weighted GPA of 68.59. Every coin except on is a Top Pop, and virtually every coin is a unique Top Pop. What an incredible accomplishment.
Best North American Sets of 2013
Spencer Collection - Bermuda Hogge Set, Proof (1989-1990)
This modern set consists of eight gold coins, each with a mintage of only 500 pieces. This set caught our eye again because the designs on the coin incorporate the rare Somers Island "Hogge" Money from Colonial times. 100% complete, with a GPA of 68.75.
Lantern Collection - Canadian Coins Complete Set, Circulation Strikes (1858-1952)
We’ve honored this set eleven years in a row. A walk through this set is a journey through some of the most amazing Canadian coins ever assembled. Previous owners of some of the coins include Norweb, Pittman and Belzberg, all famous names in the Canadian market. Constantly being improved, this set now has a GPA of 63.083.
Lantern Collection - Canadian Coins Complete Set, Circulation Strikes (1953 to date)
This is the second half of the complete Canadian Sets. Last year, Lantern completed this set and only needs the 2012 coins to being it up-to-date. This set is big, beautiful, high-quality, and a real accomplishment. The numerous Top Pop coins help raise the GPA to a hefty 65.89.
Lantern Collection - Canadian Coins Complete Set, Proof-Likes (1953 to date)
Prooflike Canadian coins are amazing. This set is huge (430 possible coins) and Lantern has just about completed the whole thing (95.35%). The weighted GPA for this set is 67.23, an incredible feat, but one which we suspect will get better in the coming years.
Southern Cross - Newfoundland Complete Set, Circulation Strikes (1865-1947)
This set, now 100% complete, is a tribute to perseverance and determination. It's also proof that you don't need a million dollars to put together a meaningful collection of coins. True to our prediction, this set was upgraded over the previous year from an overall GPA of 53.83 to 54.65. That’s an almost one point increase, something that is very difficult to achieve in a top-ranked set.
Virginia Transplant - Cuban Complete First Republic Set, Circulation Strikes (1915-1961)
(Note that the award includes the 2 sub-sets in this collection which are ranked #1.) This is an impressive, mid-sized set that is virtually complete (96.83%) and of high quality (GPA of 63.48). If America ever normalizes relations with Cuba, the value of this set will go through the roof.
FABG - Dominican Republic Complete Set, Circulation Strikes (1937-Present)
This is a great yeoman effort at attempting this oversized set that covers the complete Dominican Republic coinage in all dates and denominations from 1937 to date. Many of the coins in this set are unique Top Pops.
FABG - Dominican Republic Complete Set, Proof (1937-2003)
Loaded with unique Top Pops, this set reflects the same attention to detail that FABG lavishes on all his/her sets. There are many low mintage coins in this set, including a couple with mintages of only 35 Proofs.
FABG - Haitian Silver 10 Gourdes, Proof (1967-1971)
This is a relatively short set, but it is 100% complete and has a GPA of 66.92. Every coin is a Top Pop, many of which are unique for the grade. We’re not sure of the connection, but Haiti was fascinated by American Indian leaders on their 1971 coins.
James Foster - Mexican Silver Cap and Ray Peso Basic Set, Circulation Strikes (1918-1945)
JD has done a fabulous job of assembling a top-notch collection of these standard silver Pesos. Considering that these were all made for circulation and not with any particular attention to quality, the 66.44 GPA of this set is simply amazing. According to the owner, this set was built over a 45 year period.
Best Oceanic of 2013
CB Gold Collection - Australian Complete Sovereign Set, Circulation Strikes (1855-1931)
This is a daunting set because it contains, when complete, 192 coins that contain roughly ¼ ounce of gold each. Based on a gold value of $1,318 per ounce, that’s roughly $63,000 just for the gold value alone without even considering the collector value. This set is 86.98% complete, with a weighed GPA of 61.44.
Timbertop - Australian 1/2 Pennies Complete Set, Circulation Strikes (1911-1964)
Complete, with a weighted GPA of 64.70. Considering the powerful condition-rarities in the early dates, it is hard to fathom how difficult this set was to complete. This is an amazing set that deserves a lot of praise (and awards).
Timbertop - Australian Pennies Complete Set, Circulation Strikes (1911-1964)
This is a monster set of coins that are either actual rarities, condition rarities, or both. Many of the coins have high catalog values, but the 1930 is the super-key date of this series. Ownership of that coin alone would make this a great set, but the fact that it is surrounded by so many significant coins, makes this a Top Registry Set.
The-M - Australian Complete Proof Set (1955-1963)
In the past couple of years, Australian Proof coins of the 1955-1963 era have become some of the hottest items in numismatics, jumping dramatically in both demand and value. This set contains a complete set of all denominations and mints, and many of the coins are unique, Top Pops (this year, the overall GPA is 66.46 – a slight improvement over last year). The significance of this set is that many of the Proof Australian coins on the market have been lacquered, making them essentially ungradable. This collection sets a new, high standard for this popular series.
Timbertop - Australian Dollars with Commemoratives, Circulation Strikes (1984-present)
This is a great, mid-sized, modern set of Australian $1 coins. Though not complete, it contains numerous Top Pop coins, including several unique Top Pops.
Andrewb - Fiji Pennies, Circulation Strikes (1934-1968)
Yes, we would like to visit Fiji, but in place of that, we’re happy to live vicariously through Fijian coins. This set is 100% complete and includes numerous Top Pop coins.
Andrewb - New Zealand Threepence Complete Set, Circulation Strikes (1933-1965)
100% complete with a weighted GPA of 64.93. Knowing the owner of this set, we fully expect it to be improved in the coming years.
Andrewb - New Zealand Sixpence Complete Set, Circulation Strikes (1933-1965)
Andrewb loves New Zealand coins, and so do we. This set is 100% complete and is loaded with Top Pop coins. This year’s snapshot shows a weighted GPA of 65.05
Abuesnell - New Zealand Florin Complete Set, Circulation Strikes (1933-1965)
This is a surprisingly difficult set to complete, especially in high grades. The owner has done a good job of assembling an example of each date in this set, many in Top Pop condition. This appears to be a resurrection of the Mealin Collection (the source of many of the coins), and we expect further improvements in the future by this aggressive collector. This year, the GPA is an impressive 64.38.
Best New Sets of 2013
KCV Collection - U.S. Nickels Complete Set with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes and Proof (1866-present)
How about 96.7% completion in a set of ALL the nickels ever made, including major varieties and proofs? This challenging 455-piece set is currently topped by the KCV c/s w/MV collection, with more than a 10-point lead over the runner up. This is the first appearance of this set in the Registry, and we look forward to seeing the improvements that will almost surely be forthcoming.
Missouri Cabinet Collection - Half Cents with Major Varieties, Circulation Strikes and Proof (1793-1857)
This complete collection of Half Cents with varieties in both MS and Proof is one that won’t be matched for some time. New this year to the Registry, it carries a rating of 62.27 and to lend some idea of how high that really is, in the entire set, there are only 8 coins in existence that could improve it. That’s all dates, all grades. 89 of the 93 coins show a “pop higher” figure of 0. Need we say more?
JustHavingFun - Shield Nickels Basic Set, Circulation Strikes and Proof (1866-1883)
Every single coin in the Proof portion of the set (Set rating of 67.49) is a Top Pop, including eight coins that are unique for the grade. Hence, at present, it is unimprovable. That's quite an accomplishment in a series where there is a lot of enthusiasm and competition. The two single sets were inducted into the PCGS Set Registry Hall of Fame last year.
Perfection 4 - Barber Quarters, Proof (1892-1915)
It took someone eight years to finally surpassed Bruce Sher’s former #1 Proof Barber Quarter set which was retired in 2005. Forty one per cent of the coins in this set are Deep Cameo which is another all-time first. This set is entirely CAC certified. Also, 11 of the coins are PCGS Pop one or two with none higher. This collector owns many beautifully toned duplicates for this set but did not list them because DCAM’s, which are usually white, score higher. A GPA of 68.54 does not hurt either.
The Charles Link Major Variety Set - Capped Bust Half Dollars Major Variety Set without Reeded Edges, Circulation Strikes (1807-1836)
While Capped Bust Halves by date aren’t terribly difficult (aside from the 1815/2) when you throw in the major varieties, things get tough in a hurry. Such pieces as the 1817/4 and the 1830 Large Letters make completing this set a challenge to the most dedicated numismatists. The Charles Link Major Variety Set is 100% complete and has a set rating of 62.4, including the finest known example of the 1817/4. A well-deserved first Gold Star.
Perfection 13 - Morgan Dollars Basic Set, Proof (1878-1904)
It is hard to fathom that this collector has built the number #1 all-time set of Proof Morgan Dollars. The prior #1 set of Paul Taylor held the title for ten consecutive years before retiring last year. This set has also surpassed the famous sets of JFS, Wayne Miller and Louis Eliasberg. Of the 27 coins that comprise this set, eleven are PCGS Pop 1 with none higher and all coins are CAC certified. This is a feat that is not often seen in sets of this caliber. With a GPA of 68.25 and 33% of the coins Deep Cameo, this set is almost impossible to ever surpass.
Mitchell J. Spivack (Wondercoin) - Top 100 Modern Coins
This set has some of the best if not the best coins in the modern era. There are a number of coins in this set that many collectors have dreamed of such as the 1969-S Double Die Lincoln Cent, the No S Proof Coins, the Cheerios Dollar, the Wisconsin Extra leaf Quarters, the mysterious 1964 Special Mint Sets and numerous popular Doubled Die coins. This set is one of the most exciting sets, if not the most exiting set, that a collector can build in the modern era category. Mitch has done an exemplary job.
Ikes77 Collection - Gold & Platinum Eagle Complete Set, Proof (1986-present)
So close to perfection. The ikes777 set has all the gold and platinum eagles in Proof 70 Deep Cameo condition with the exception of one single coin. If it weren’t for the 1989 $25 eagle, this set would be called the Perfect Set.
Timbertop - Australian Fifty Cent Commemoratives, Circulation Strikes (1966-Present)
This new set embraces the modern Australian 50 Cent pieces. The overall quality is superb, as reflected in the weighted GPA of 67.105. This set is not yet complete, but having seen the owner's other sets, it won't take him/her long to fill it and continue upgrading.
Lantern Collection - Canadian Silver Dollars Date Set, Circulation Strikes (1935-1967)
This is a new addition to the Canadian Silver Dollar category, and it quickly leapt to the top of the heap. The collection is 100% complete with a GPA of 65.21. It is difficult to enter a new arena and take it over, but Lantern has done just that.
Best Exhibited Sets of 2013
Gobrecht's Raisinet Collection - Complete U.S. Coin Design Set No Gold (1792-present)
In 2008, this collector won gold as a Best New Set. This year he receives his second gold for a set that is beautifully exhibited. The owner, who is clearly passionate about his collection, offers highly educational comments about most of the coins in the set. In addition, nearly all of the coins are imaged either with the collector’s own pictures or PCGS TrueView. Take a peek. You’ll spend some quality time browsing through the 58 coins in this set.
The KCM Collection - German Planck 2 Mark Date Set, Circulation Strikes (1957-1971)
The German Planck set features Max Planck on the obverse and the stylized eagle on the reverse. So while each coin has the same design, this collector has done a nice job of featuring most of the coins with large obverse and reverse images as well as the coin in the holder. In addition, he has provided details about design, metal content and size. The set lacks only the 1962, but based on the steady growth of the set since 2011, we have no doubt that the set will be complete soon.
Best of the Registry Winners of 2013
Collectors with the finest current set in each category with at a least 90% completion and in large set compositions those with 200 or more coins registered in one set, will receive a "Best of the Registry" icon by their set listings in the registry. Click here to view a list of those sets which were #1 and and at least 90% complete on 6/28/13 5:00pm EST.
Ten Year Anniversary Recipients
To celebrate collectors who have won awards for being number one in their category for at least ten years in a row, we recognize their sets with the 10 Year Anniversary icon. To these collectors, you have our thanks for your loyalty and friendship. We appreciate all you do for the PCGS Set Registry. To view a list of these award winning sets, please click here.