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The Stewart Blay Collection of Canadian Cents to be Auctioned by GreatCollections

This 1923 Canadian Cent is one of many highlights from the Stewart Blay Collection of Canadian Cents. Courtesy of GreatCollections. Click image to enlarge.
Includes the #1 Collection of King George V Business Strikes & Specimens

(Irvine, California) – The #1 Collection of King George V Canadian Cents is scheduled to be auctioned by GreatCollections in February. The Stewart Blay Collection was formed over the past 30 years and is ranked atop the PCGS Set Registry for business strikes as well as specimens.

In the business strikes set, a staggering 13 of the 17 coins are either the single-finest graded or tied for finest at PCGS. It has a Set Registry ranking of 67.62. Its counterpart, the specimen set, has nine of the 12 coins either single-finest graded or tied for finest with a Set Registry ranking of 67.54. The pedigrees are numerous, including Norweb, Belzberg, Pittman, and Cook.

The collector, Stewart Blay, painstakingly purchased each coin one at a time by attending coin shows around the country and hunting down the best of the best. He attended major auctions in Canada and recalls one such auction where he bought almost every Canadian small cent on offer.

GreatCollections President Ian Russell said Blay, who sadly passed away in December 2022, was perhaps most well known for collecting Lincoln Cents and other copper collections. “However, few knew he also focused on Canadian small cents for [some] 30 years. All are graded by PCGS and most still reside in the old-style holders, graded in the 1990s and early 2000s.”

Russell continued, “It’s almost unheard of to have 75% of a series in finest known (or tied for finest), and even those coins not graded numerically as the finest, the coins have amazing eye appeal and appear conservatively graded.”

GreatCollections is also auctioning Blay’s Lincoln Cent Collection over three auctions in January. Five of the Lincoln Cents are already bid to over $100,000 each, including the 1958 Doubled Die, currently bid at $323,000.

In addition to the Canadian King George V Small Cents, there are sets of King George VI in business strike and specimen, Queen Elizabeth highlights, and even large cents from the 19th century.

The Stewart Blay Canadian Collection will be sold unreserved over two weeks of auctions on February 5 and 12.

Highlights from the Stewart Blay Collection of Canadian Small Cents

King George V Business Strikes - Finest Known or Tied for Finest

  • Canada 1921 KGV Cent, PCGS MS64RD
  • Canada 1922 KGV Cent, PCGS MS64RD
  • Canada 1923 KGV Cent, PCGS MS64RD
  • Canada 1925 KGV Cent, PCGS MS65RD
  • Canada 1926 KGV Cent, PCGS MS65RD
  • Canada 1927 KGV Cent, PCGS MS65RD
  • Canada 1928 KGV Cent, PCGS MS66RD
  • Canada 1929 KGV Cent, PCGS MS65RD
  • Canada 1930 KGV Cent, PCGS MS65RD
  • Canada 1932 KGV Cent, PCGS MS65RD
  • Canada 1934 KGV Cent, PCGS MS66RD
  • Canada 1935 KGV Cent, PCGS MS66RD
  • Canada 1936 KGV Cent, PCGS MS66RD

King George V Specimens - Finest Known or Tied for Finest

  • Canada 1921 KGV Cent, PCGS SP65RD
  • Canada 1922 KGV Cent, PCGS SP64RB
  • Canada 1923 KGV Cent, PCGS SP67RB
  • Canada 1924 KGV Cent, PCGS SP65RD
  • Canada 1925 KGV Cent, PCGS SP64RD
  • Canada 1926 KGV Cent, PCGS SP65RD
  • Canada 1927 KGV Cent, PCGS SP65RB
  • Canada 1928 KGV Cent, PCGS SP65RD
  • Canada 1931 KGV Cent, PCGS SP66RD

King George VI Specimens

  • Canada 1944 KGVI Cent, PCGS SP64RD
  • Canada 1945 KGVI Cent, PCGS SP64BN
  • Canada 1948 KGVI Cent, PCGS SP66RD

Queen Elizabeth II Specimens

  • Canada 1950 QEII Cent, PCGS SP65RD
  • Canada 1953 QEII Cent No Shoulder Strap, PCGS SP67RD

Aside from being on view at the NY International Numismatic Convention (NYINC) on January 12-15 and Long Beach Coin Expo on February 1-4, the Stewart Blay Collection of Canadian Cents is available to view at the Irvine, California, headquarters of GreatCollections by appointment. To view high quality images and register to bid visit www.greatcollections.com or call 1-800-442-6467.

About GreatCollections

GreatCollections, the official auction house of the American Numismatic Association, specializes in auctioning certified coins and banknotes, handling transactions from start to finish. Since its founding in 2010, GreatCollections has successfully auctioned over 1 million certified coins, making it one of the leading certified coin companies in the United States with annual sales in 2022 exceeding $270 million. Ian Russell, owner/president of GreatCollections, is a member of the prestigious Professional Numismatists Guild and member of the National Auctioneers Association. For more information about GreatCollections, visit www.greatcollections.com or call 800-442-6467.

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