Back in March 1981, Bowers & Ruddy offered a Gem Uncirculated 1792 Birch Cent from the Garrett Collection. I viewed the coin before the auction and was blown away...the condition was simply amazing for a Birch Cent, or any 1792 Pattern for that matter. The coin sold for $200,000. Now, it is coming up again in the Donald Partrick Collection offered by Heritage in January 2015.
The name Donald Partrick is well-known by Colonial coin collectors. Anyone who has gone up against him at auction for a high-grade or super-rare Colonial knows they never stood a chance – if he wanted it, he got it. His collection is so vast, and so nice, that it is being spread over several block-buster sales.
A look at the first installment reveals some amazing rarities. First off, Mr. Patrick built a collection of twelve 1792 U.S. Patterns coins, the largest collection ever to appear in a single auction. Included is the unique 1792 Silver-Center Cent without the silver plug, a unique 1792 Half Disme in Copper, and a stunning 1792 Quarter Pattern by Joseph Wright.
Next up is an extensive series of Massachusetts Silver, including multiple NE Shillings, Willow Trees, Oak and Pine Tree silver, including many exceptional rarities and Uncirculated examples. Then comes a Maryland Lord Baltimore Denarium...seven(!) Higleys, including the unique "The Wheele Goes Round" variety...a handful of Confederatio Coppers of different types...Immune Columbia patterns...the unique Janus Head copper (off the market since 1979)...an extensive run of Massachusetts Half Cents and Cents...and one of the most complete collections of Vermont Copper varieties this writer has ever seen. Capping off the sale are three Brass 1776 Continental Dollars and, why not, an original Confederate Half Dollar. Mind-blowing coin after mind-blowing coin. And, we haven’t even seen the extent of his Connecticut Coppers and other State coinages yet...they’ll come later.
Between the Eric Newman Colonials, the upcoming Henry P. Kendall Foundation Colonials, and Donald Partrick’s amazing Patterns and Colonials, 2014 has been and 2015 will be the best years ever for Colonial coin collectors. The fact that all three collections have come up at about the same time should not lull the collector into thinking that these buying opportunities are commonplace. Simply put, these are once-in-a-lifetime chances to see and buy some of the most amazing coins ever made. I know...it’s been 34 years since I saw that Uncirculated Birch Cent!