|Stack's Bowers||Auction||The January 2013 Americana Sale||Jan-2013||CAC||1854 Braided Hair Cent. N-25. Rarity-3. Noyes Die State C/C. MS-66 RB (PCGS). CAC. Die Variety: Newcomb-25 is one of 30 varieties of the date; there is no hole in Liberty's ear on this variety.
Die State: Late Noyes die states, the fields revealing die wear and stress throughout, with especially heavy die erosion seen at the rims.
Strike: Sharp at the centers and several obverse stars show full radials.
Surfaces: Deep rose-tan and satiny mint orange throughout, with the latter dominating both sides. Free of marks of consequence; a scattering of tiny flecks are noted under low magnification, the majority at the date area.
Census Rankings: Noyes ranks this Gem as number one in his Census; McCawley-Grellman call it tied for finest seen. The Noyes grade is MS-67, and the McCawley-Grellman grade is MS-66.
Pedigree: Lee J. Lahrman; Abe Kosoff's sale of February 1963, lot 476; Ira & Larry Goldberg's sale of the R. E. "Ted" Naftzger, Jr. Collection, Part III, September 2009, lot 1226; Cardinal Collection.
Commentary: The Cardinal Collection provides an excellent opportunity to fill in the Guide Book varieties listed for this decade, and in brilliant Gem Mint State, nonethelss. An opportunity that is surely not soon to be repeated!