1859 U.S. Proof Set from Royal Mint Sold At Auction for Over £422,000 ($637,000)

March 20th, 2013 by


Morton and Eden’s March 6 auction of the Royal Mint Museum’s 1859 proof set of U.S. coins fetched nearly twice the estimate in aggressive bidding. The top coin was the 1859 $10 proof gold Eagle, purchased by Ira and Larry Goldberg Coins on behalf of an anonymous buyer. All the other ten coins were bought by Gallery Precious of Tokyo, who was determined to gain the whole set, but fell short on the top coin. The total proceeds, including 20% buyer fee, was £422,376 ($637,787.)

The coin set, which we covered here, were originally a present in 1859 from Professor J.H. Alexander, U.S. commissioner on a joint British/U.S. study on a common decimal currency between the two countries. Alexander presented two complete 1859 proof sets to the Royal Mint, but the $3 gold coin in one set went missing in the early 20th century. It was this 11-coin incomplete set that the Royal Mint Museum decided to auction, while retaining the complete set.

The Museum had the collection professionally graded by PCGS, who graded the coins PF63 or above. The $10 Gold Eagle and $2.50 Quarter Eagle were both graded PR65-CAM, while the Half Eagle garnered a PR65+ CAM, denoting extra eye appeal at that grade.

The prices realized, (minus buyer’s premium) according to Morton and Eden, were:

Indian Head 1¢ piecePR65£2,200 ($3,322)
Silver “Trime” 3¢ piecePR63£480 ($725)
Silver Seated Liberty half-dimePR64£1,400 ($2114)
Silver Seated Liberty dimePR64£1,600 ($2416)
Silver Seated Liberty quarterPR64£2,200 ($3,322)
Silver Seated Liberty half dollarPR64£2,600 ($3,926)
Silver Seated Liberty dollarPR64£6,500 ($9,815)
Gold Indian Head dollarPR65 CAM£15,000 ($22,650)
Gold Coronet quarter eaglePR65 CAM£62,000 ($93,620)
Gold Coronet half eaglePR65+ CAM£88,000 ($132,880)
Gold Coronet eaglePR65 CAM£170,000 ($256,700)
TOTAL (minus premium)£351,980 ($531,490)
TOTAL (with 20% buyer’s premium)£422,376 ($637,788)


Gainesville Coins carries a wide selection of both ungraded and NGC/PCGS -certified pre-1933 U.S. gold coins, as well as Morgan and Peace Dollars at very attractive prices with no hidden fees!