July 8, 2009 | Vol. 9 Number 18
Collectors Club Price Guide Pop Report CoinFacts Auction Prices Realized Set Registry
Which Coins are Hot?
By Jaime Hernandez, eCollector Editor

Nice fresh coins seem to be hiding out in the coin market. Some collectors and dealers are hanging tight, refusing to sell at low prices or take a loss on their coins. They prefer to be patient and hope for the market to rebound. So right now, there is definitely a need for nice fresh coins.

Even some of the major auction companies are having a difficult time finding fresh collections. This is mainly because a lot of high-end collectors are just watching from the sidelines, waiting for the right time to put their coins up for sale. What's hot? For the most part, generic gold coins seem to be trading very well, while better-date gold is OK in some areas and rare proof-gold coins are almost impossible to find.

In the meantime, we hope you are finding the coins you want and are having a great summer so far!

As always, please let us know how you are enjoying the PCGS eCollector.
eCollector Subscribers: WIN a Free Coin!
(For eCollector Subscribers only)

In each issue of eCollector, we randomly draw a name from our subscribers.

The winner in this issue will receive a 2008 Elizabeth Monroe Medal PCGS BU in a special PCGS holder indicating eCollector issue #18. Check the next issue to see if you won. Good luck!

Last week's winner of the 1982-S 50C PCGS PR69DCAM Washington was John Mars of Oakland, Michigan. Congratulations, John!

View list of all past winners.

Offer good while supplies last, and may be altered or cancelled by PCGS at any time.
1916-D Dime Attracts Coin Doctors and Counterfeiters!

We have all heard the phrase "if it's too good to be true, it probably is."

Unfortunately, coin doctors and coin counterfeiters are also very familiar with this phrase. So, what do they do? They just mark up the price of the coins which they altered or fabricated. This way, unsuspecting buyers believe the fake or altered coins are authentic since they are being sold at about the same price as authentic example.

Once these counterfeit coins get into collectors' hands, the first thing some of the collectors want to do is get their coins authenticated and encapsulated by PCGS. Then comes the most difficult part of our profession, which is when we have to bare the sad news to the collectors by letting them know their coins have been altered or even worse, they are fake. For this, we also have a phrase which is, "please don't shoot the messenger." We really dislike having to tell submitters that the coins they bought have been altered or they are fake. Read More...

Mint Cancels 2009 Uncirculated $50 Gold Buffaloes

The U.S. Mint will cease production of 2009 uncirculated $50 American Buffalo coins in 2009. Since 2006, uncirculated $50 buffalo coins have been offered to a select group of authorized dealers. These authorized dealers then offer the coins to investors and collectors worldwide.

In 2008, the Mint also offered bullion uncirculated and proof $5, $10 and $25 fractional gold buffaloes. The mintages for many of the fractional gold buffalo coins proved to be very low compared to one ounce gold buffalo coin mintages.

Despite the low mintages, the Mint was unable to allocate gold bullion reserves and was forced to eliminate many of their silver, gold and platinum products. The Gold Buffalo series was widely affected by this challenge. Therefore, fractional gold buffalo coins were produced for just one year. Read More...

ANA's World's Fair of Money Tours Highlight History and Glamour of Los Angeles

Attendees of the American Numismatic Association's 2009 World's Fair of Money®, August 5-9 in Los Angeles, can take advantage of special tours that explore the glamour and culture of one of the world's most exciting cities. Tours include visits to famous museums, sports venues, restaurants and Hollywood hotspots.

Bus tours and walking tours depart from the Los Angeles Convention Center, where the ANA convention takes place. Take advantage of early discounts through July 10. To register for a tour or event, visit www.worldsfairofmoney.com and select the "I Want to Attend" button. For more information, call 719-482-9857 or e-mail [email protected]. Read More...
PCGS Dealer Spotlight: Gary Adkins
. Watch video!
Robert Ball Hughes – More Than a Coin Designer?
By John Dannruether

Like much that is written on any subject, tradition often triumphs over fact. Robert Ball Hughes and his contributions to coin design are no exception. Most references books pigeonhole Hughes as a minimalist artist, ignoring much of his work in other genres. This is very misleading at best.

Although Hughes performed cameo work on commission, he was a preeminent sculptor and was perhaps more famous for having introduced pyrography to America (taking a red-hot poker and burning images into wood) than for his minimalist work. In fact, Hughes was the first person in America to produce a life-size marble statue and a life-size bronze casting! It likely was his fame for these large sculptured works, as much as or more than for his minimalist work, that persuaded Mint Director Robert Patterson to hire Ball Hughes to redo Christian Gobrecht's Liberty Seated motifs. (In art circles, he is known as Ball Hughes and signed most of his works with that signature, although in numismatics he is always referred to as Robert Ball Hughes.)

Born on January 19, 1806 in London, young Hughes was a precocious talent. His mother noticed that her candles were always missing wax and soon realized that her son was using them to create wax sculptures. His parents recognized his budding talent, so he was encouraged in the arts and began his sculpting career in his teens. When he married in 1829, he took his bride to the States for an extended honeymoon, fell in love with America, and never returned to London. Initially he settled in New York City, but when he saw Dorchester, Massachusetts, he was so reminded of his homeland that he moved there permanently in the 1830s. In 1851, he moved into his final Dorchester residence, "Sunnyside" at 3 School Street, where he lived until his death in 1868. He and his wife entertained celebrities on numerous occasions, including Charles Dickens. Today, the city of Dorchester lists the house on its list of the ten most endangered historically significant buildings. Read More...
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