eCollector - Aug. 27, 2002 | Vol. 3 Number 18 


Market Report

Market Expansion Touches all Corners as Rare Coins Continue to be in High Demand
Nice coins are selling... or have you heard that before? Generic market could be the next to roar. MS63/64 gold is selling quickly. Dated $10 Liberty gold is a new hot area. Bowers & Merena "Rarities Sale" is now online. Click here to read more.

Set Registry Spotlight

Stewart Blay - The Number One Current Indian Cents Circulation Strikes (1859-1909)
Last week, Stewart Blay registered his amazing full Red Indian cent collection. Twenty-eight of the 55 coins in this set are the highest graded. The 1864, 1876, and 1878 are the only coins for those dates graded MS67RD! Stewart also makes the claim that his 1877, the key date in the set, is without question the finest known example. You be the judge. Stewart's set, along with two other magnificent sets, the Ally Collection and the Richard Collection, will be displayed side-by-side at the Long Beach Coin Show, September 26-28th. To take a peek at the Stewart Blay Collection, click here.

"Miss Kitty! Miss Kitty!"
"What is it, Festus?"
"Thar's a bunch of Injuns gatherin'. Looks like a big 'ole showdown. Better git the marshal!"

Click here to read the entire SHOWDOWN story.

Buffalo nickels (CS and PR), Walking Liberty half dollars (CS and PR), and Indian cents Basic Set (CS) have all been weighted. Coming up are the Indian cents with Varieties (CS) and the Indian cent Proof sets. We have also begun adding Proof year sets. New on the Registry are 1936-1942 Proof sets. Previews of proposed weighting are posted for at least a week on the Set Registry News page prior to actually making the changes. This is allowing registrants time to review the changes and submit feedback. Your opinion counts, so please let us hear from you before we add weighting to the sets.

Fun, informative, and sometimes controversial, the PCGS Set Registry Messageboard remains the number one coin forum on the Internet. Get involved with other collectors who are currently participating in the Set Registry program or are just beginning. Click here to chat on the Set Registry Messageboard.

The PCGS Set RegistryTM is a work in progress. If you have any suggestions or comments please email [email protected].

Building an Indian cents set? Go to the Authorized Dealer link on PCGS and click on Small Cents in Specialties. Looking for dealers with Internet sites? Click on the Internet sites link in services. Search for more than 1,000 dealers in the PCGS Authorized Dealer listings.

The Expert's Corner

Grading Mint State Indian Cents
Indian Head cents were minted from 1859 to 1909. They were initially struck in copper-nickel alloy but were switched to bronze in 1864. The reverse was redesigned after the first year of issue; a shield was added and the thin laurel wreath was replaced with one of heavier oak. This article, reprinted from PCGS's Official Guide to Coin Grading and Counterfeit Detection, illustrates the general characteristics of Mint State examples of all types of Indian Head cents. Click here to read more.

Collector's Survey
Indian cents are among the most popular of all United States coins. There are numerous reasons why this series is so well-received, but which one of the following do you feel is the most important/significant explanation for their truly remarkable popularity?

  1. They're beautiful! The design is excellent and magnificently preserved specimens are a visual delight.
  2. They're overflowing with nostalgia! The first Indian cents were struck before the Civil War yet the coins were still in circulation during World War II (1941-45) and later. What a history!
  3. The series offers a great balance of common and rare! The series definitely has some significant key coins in it, but a lot of the dates are affordable to every collector.
  4. There are so many ways to collect them! A circulated set, a Mint State set, a collection of Proofs, a type set of significant varieties, a full red set, a 20th century date set... the collecting options are endless.
  5. They're so American! Collecting Indian cents is something that Americans do, like playing baseball or eating corn dogs at the County Fair.

Click here to answer. Results will be posted in the next eCollector.

Results from last survey: 41% believe that the Mint's destruction of its backlog of Proof sets won't make any difference to collectors because there will still be plenty of coins. Click here for a complete breakdown.

What is an Indian Head cent? Find out in Lingo, the PCGS dictionary of numismatic definitions. Click here for Lingo.

Subscribe to the online PCGS Population Report for as little as $4.95 a month! Updated weekly, get the latest census data on all coins graded by PCGS. Click here to get a free peek at the population statistics for Indian cents.

Our Readers Ask

Question: How rare is the 1839/6 overdate cent? What are the typical grades to expect? I have been looking for an Extremely Fine piece for some time without success.

Answer: We estimate that perhaps 200 to 400 are known. Most are in grades such as VG, Fine, and VF. EF coins are in the distinct minority, and the number of pieces we have seen better than this can be counted on the fingers of one hand. Probably VF is a realistic goal, and even a piece in that grade will not be at all easy to find.

-- Q. David Bowers, Bowers and Merena Galleries

Do you have a question you would like to ask our experts? Click here.
Or, visit the PCGS messageboards, the most active coin forums online.

Join the PCGS Collectors Club ...Enjoy the Benefits!
If you love collecting coins, the PCGS Collectors Club is for you. Members enjoy direct access to all PCGS grading services, complimentary PCGS gradings and a wealth of essential information. All PCGS Collectors Club Members enjoy access to all Collectors Universe auctions, eShops and messageboards and the eZines of their choice. Joining is quick and easy. Just click here or call PCGS Customer Service at 800-447-8848. Do it today!


Now! Bid Online in the Bowers and Merena September Rarities Sale!

The next Bowers and Merena Rarities Sale will take place September 22 in Beverly Hills, but online pre-sale bidding is underway right now! This Rarities Sale features a remarkable selection of choice pieces. From the collection of Dr. Lawrence Cookson comes what might well be called the definitive collection of 1913-1938 Buffalo nickels, plus other treasures. Also included are some highly important early dimes from the Jason Lindsay Collection. Numerous rare silver and gold pieces, including a previously unlisted gold pattern coin, are to be offered, and there are many more highlights as well. The September Rarities Sale is not to be missed! Click here to bid!


Long Beach Coin and Collectibles Exposition
Long Beach Convention Center
Long Beach, CA
September 25 - 29, 2002

Take advantage of PCGS' Show Service!
  • Special Show Service -- $65 per coin valued at $1,500 or less
  • Standard Show Service -- $100 per coin
  • Coins may be submitted to all other PCGS grading levels at the show.

    Have your coins graded by PCGS and save on one-way postage! You may submit your coins at the show to all PCGS grading service levels. Submissions will be accepted from Wednesday, September 25*, through 4 p.m. on Saturday, September 28. Show Service coins will be returned to you at the show. All other PCGS-graded coins will be mailed to you following the show

    *Wednesday, September 25 is Dealer Set Up Day. We'll be accepting submissions from 2 p.m. - 7 p.m. on September 25. Check with the show promoter for access to the facility.

    Long Beach Coin and Collectibles Exposition Show Hours are as follows:

    Dealer SchedulePublic Schedule
    Wed. 9/25 (Set up) 2 p.m. - 7 p.m. 
    Thur. 9/26 8 a.m. - 7 p.m.Thur. 9/26 10 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.
    Fri. 9/27 9 a.m. - 7 p.m.Fri. 9/27 10 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.
    Sat. 9/28 9 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.Sat. 9/28 10 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.
    Sun. 9/29 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.Sun. 9/29 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
    (PCGS will not be attending on Sunday but the show will be open)

    For more information about PCGS grading at the show, call 800-447-8848.

    For more information about the Long Beach Coin and Collectibles Exposition, call 805-962-9939 or go to

    © 1999 - 2004 Collectors Universe Inc. All Rights Reserved.