New million dollar coin: David Lawrence sells 1879 Coiled Hair Stella

David Lawrence Rare Coins (DLRC) acquired, on behalf of a client, one of the rarest U.S. gold issues from the 19th century. Graded as a Proof 66 Cameo, DLRC placed an 1879 Coiled Hair $4 Gold Stella for just over $1,000,000. This transaction solidified the coin as one of the newest members of the PCGS Million Dollar Coin Club. Last sold in January 2014 for $851,875 in public auction, the coin had been held off the market for a few years and was recently acquired on behalf of the collector from a New Jersey dealer.

John Brush, president of DLRC, said, “A collector that we’ve had the privilege of working with in recent years contacted us in his search for a Coiled Hair Stella. Thanks to our long-standing relationships with dealers throughout the country, we were able to locate this piece quickly, and we were excited to marry the coin and the collector.”

The $4 Stellas of 1879 and 1880 are considered “pattern” coinage but are treated and collected as regular issue Proof gold pieces. Originally created by John A. Kasson with help from Dr. William Wheeler Hubbell, the Stellas were to be used for international trade. However, the coins did not gain traction and the production was halted. There are two varieties, Coiled Hair and Flowing Hair, with Coiled Hair being the rarer of the two. The 1879 Coiled Hair is the second rarest date, the rarest being 1880, and only 12 examples are known to have been minted.

“In the current marketplace, high-end coins are becoming harder to locate,” continued Brush. “As collectors and investors once again are returning to collectibles, we’ve seen record results in many public auctions and in private transactions. So when collectors let us know their current want lists, we work hard to locate special coins such as the Coiled Hair Stella.”

This example of the 1879 Coiled Hair Stella can be traced back several generations as it was once part of the fabled Garrett Collection, and more recently the Buddy Ebsen Collection. A premium gem with well-struck devices, the lightest softness is noticed on some hair strands due to the typical planchet striations. Possessing frosty surfaces with wonderful cameo contrasts and deeply mirrored fields, the eye-appeal of this piece is nearly unmatched.

About David Lawrence Rare Coins

David Lawrence Rare Coins specializes in certified U.S. coins. Whether you are just starting your collecting journey or you’re in the process of putting together one of the top sets of U.S. coins, David Lawrence can certainly help put their service and expertise to work. Please contact us at 800-776-0560 or email coins@davidlawrence.com, and we’ll work with you to figure out what we can do to help you and your collection!

DLRC holds weekly internet auctions and offers sellers the options of direct sale or consignment to auction.

DLRC is located in Virginia Beach, VA, and offers products via their website, trade shows, Amazon, and on eBay (davidlawrencerarecoins).

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Comments

  1. Peter says

    johnaz,
    scratchy fields, but mark-free devices. If it were the other way around, lower grade down to ?

  2. cagcrisp says

    @Xena, Great Great Great!!!

    I would google 1883 History to try to find something that happened that year that would make it more personal for Him.

    I’m giving out 3 Liberty $20 Golds this Christmas 1876, 1879 and 1881.

    Mine like the Old West…

    …SO…

    1876 – Battle of Little Bighorn
    1879 to a grandchild that watches westerns. In 1879 Doc Holliday was reported to have killed his first man
    1881 – Gunfight at O.K. Corral

  3. Jerry Diekmann says

    Guess I’m not really a bona fide coin collector, although I have saved coins for over 50 years. To me, this coin is wo9rth spot gold and is nowhere near the grade that has been assigned it. Another example of the “gradeflation” that Q. David Bowers has talked about in the past. I can understand what Teddy Roosevelt said about our nation’s coins after he became POTUS in 1901 – there aren’t ANY really nice looking coins minted in the 19th century. And the Seated Liberty on so many coins could only have that posture if she had a broken neck; she’s not an owl, you know.

  4. joe#2 says

    Just called the US Mint about why the 2017-w proof gold buffalo coin is not available. They told me there has been a “run” on them and they will be getting in more, ( for those who are interested in purchasing one. )

  5. cagcrisp says

    16AN 2016 ATB SILVER UNC 5 OZ – FT MLTR 17,811 + 21
    17AJ 2017 ATB SILVER UNC 5 OZ – EFF MNDS 16,403 + 37
    17AK 2017 ATB SILVER UNC 5 OZ – DOUGLASS 16,605 +64
    17AL 2017 ATB SILVER UNC 5 OZ – OZARK 16,427 +131
    17AM 2017 ATB SILVER UNC 5 OZ – ELLIS ISLAND 17,498 + 240
    17AN 2017 ATB SILVER UNC 5 OZ – G R CLARK 14,919 + 307

  6. cagcrisp says

    17XA 2017 AM LIBERTY 24K GOLD 1 OZ 26,873 +196
    17XB 2017 AM LIBERTY SILVER MEDAL (P) 53,764 +512
    17XC 2017 225TH ANN ENHANCED UNC SET 210,400 +71
    17XD 2017 AM LIBERTY SILVER 4-MEDAL SET 28,398 + 369

  7. cagcrisp says

    Oh Lordy…Someone returned 4 of the Boys Town Uncirculated Golds…Guess they didn’t get the $1,500/coin memo…

    17CA 2017 BOYS TOWN GOLD PROOF 1,626 +51
    17CB 2017 BOYS TOWN GOLD UNC 2,995 (4)
    17CC 2017 BOYS TOWN SILVER PROOF 25,665 +258
    17CD 2017 BOYS TOWN SILVER UNC 11,033 + 332
    17CE 2017 BOYS TOWN CLAD PROOF 17,275 +133
    17CF 2017 BOYS TOWN CLAD UNC 14,967 +165
    17CG 2017 BOYS TOWN 3-COIN SET 5,405 +40

    17CH 2017 LIONS CLUBS SILVER PROOF 67,683 +264
    17CJ 2017 LIONS CLUBS SILVER UNC 16,989 +56

  8. cagcrisp says

    16XA 2016 WALKING LIBERTY 24K GOLD .5OZ 65,237 +96
    16XC 2016 STANDING LIBERTY 24K GOLD .25OZ 91,415 +149

  9. cagcrisp says

    16EA 2016 AM EAGLE SILVER PROOF 1 OZ 580,944 +996
    16EB 2016 AM EAGLE GOLD PROOF 1 OZ 23,929 + 11
    16EC 2016 AM EAGLE GOLD PROOF 1/2 OZ 5,867 + 25
    16EG 2016 AM EAGLE SILVER UNC 1 OZ 215,942 +470

  10. cagcrisp says

    17EA 2017 AM EAGLE SILVER PROOF 1 OZ 363,630 +5,250

    17EB 2017 AM EAGLE GOLD PROOF 1 OZ 7,952 +199
    17EC 2017 AM EAGLE GOLD PROOF 1/2 OZ 2,143 +54
    17ED 2017 AM EAGLE GOLD PROOF 1/4 OZ 3,740 +135
    17EF 2017 AM EAGLE GOLD PROOF 4-COIN SET 9,812 –

    17EG 2017 AM EAGLE SILVER UNC 1 OZ 137,842 + 1,413

    17EL 2017 AM BUFFALO GOLD PROOF 1 OZ 15,318 (7)

  11. cagcrisp says

    FINALLY some Low Mintage Wonder Chasers on the FS…

    JQ1 2015 FS GOLD PROOF 1/2 OZ – TRUMAN 2,739 + 2
    JQ2 2015 FS GOLD UNC 1/2 OZ – TRUMAN 1,928 + 3
    JQ4 2015 FS GOLD UNC 1/2 OZ – EISENHWR 2,085 + 4
    JQ8 2015 FS GOLD UNC 1/2 OZ – JOHNSON 1,884 + 5

    16SA 2016 FS GOLD PROOF 1/2 OZ – NIXON 2,626 + 5
    16SB 2016 FS GOLD UNC 1/2 OZ – NIXON 1,738 +22
    16SC 2016 FS GOLD PROOF 1/2 OZ – FORD 2,449 + 5
    16SD 2016 FS GOLD UNC 1/2 OZ – FORD 1,738 +28
    16SE 2016 FS GOLD PROOF 1/2 OZ – REAGAN 3,524 +8
    16SF 2016 FS GOLD UNC 1/2 OZ – REAGAN 1,984 + 9

  12. KEITHSTER says

    My Boys Town Unc. shipped yesterday and the mintage looks to be heading south! Ho Ho Ho MERRYCHRISTMAS & Good Luck All “>

  13. cagcrisp says

    @Joe#2, I saw what you posted above “Just called the US Mint about why the 2017-w proof gold buffalo coin is not available. They told me there has been a “run” on them and they will be getting in more, ( for those who are interested in purchasing one. )”

    I have no reason to doubt what you posted. They have been listed as Currently Unavailable and not Sold Out. It would be surprising for them to be pulled this early. Since 2013 they were available until year end before being pulled. To pull them with this Low of a sales number would be Somewhat unusual…

  14. Rick says

    Will buy a few Nixon and Ford unc coins before the expected US Mint price increase this week. Too bad have to bet on both coins at this point.

  15. Junior says

    MGM

    I ordered one 2017 W Gold Proof Buffalo from the Philly Mint Store Friday. It was delivered today. I never asked how many were left in inventory.

  16. Joe M. says

    @ Rick
    Don’t forget about the 3-coin set containing the proof
    17CG 2017 BOYS TOWN 3-COIN SET 5,405 +40
    17CA 2017 BOYS TOWN GOLD PROOF 1,626 +51
    Boy’s town gold PROOF total 8,031

  17. Jerry Diekmann says

    SoKrates – IMO that million $ coin deserves a rating of at best, MS60 proof – details (cleaned), and I would add “harshly cleaned”- it looks like it was cleaned with steel wool and Ajax cleanser. I don’t trust the TPG grades too much anymore – I have seen the “gradeflation” that Q. David Bowers has talked about explode in the last few years. For a million $, I would do something a lot more fun than buying a gold pattern (not even a coin – call it a failed coin) with less than 1/2 ounce of gold in it. The coin is UGLY and the reverse border makes no sense – what were they thinking back then? But back in those days they were minting ugly Shield nickels with a distinct funeral look to the obverse and about as simplistic a reverse imaginable, plus 3-cent pieces and 20-cent pieces. And Seated Liberty coins where Liberty would have to have had a broken neck to look that way – really poor design. And they never even thought of striking a commemorative coin for the nation’s centennial in 1876. But they could chop down beautiful sequoia trees and haul parts of them back to Philadelphia where fairgoers could look at them and pronounce them as fakes. They had all the time to make all kinds of patterns in the 1870s, but no one thought of a commemorative coin for the nation’s centennial????

  18. datadave says

    @cagcrisp – The ATB 5 oz puck numbers are comparatively strong considering how the proof eagles are doing and overall bullion sales. Looks like there is a pretty strong collector base for these things. With the 3 low mintage 2012 clustered around the 15K mark, it looks like all the 2017 issues will hit close to the high 16Ks by the time sales finish for these. I was expecting at least one to languish closer to the high 15Ks.

  19. A&L Futures says

    Its been a while since I last posted here, but I wanted to wish you all a very Merry Christmas / Happy Holidays. May our [2018] “flips” be grand, and our losses minimal.

  20. cagcrisp says

    @datadave, “The ATB 5 oz puck numbers are comparatively strong considering how the proof eagles are doing and overall bullion sales.”

    I would Agree with that. The key is “comparatively”

    Final sales for All of the 2014 “P” pucks was an Average of 25,686
    Final sales for All of the 2015 “P” pucks was an Average of 18,614
    Final sales for the Four Completed sales of the 2016 “P” pucks is 18,856

    Now you have the Final “P” puck of 2016 (Moultrie) setting at 17,811. A full 1,000+ behind the other 2016 pucks and the Moultrie has been on sale for a Little over 1 year and with Average sales of 23 over the past 10 weeks it will take Another year for Moultrie to reach the sales numbers of the other 2016 “P” pucks.

    That will Not happen as my Guess is that Moultrie will be pulled before the 2018 pucks come out.

    Not counting the Trump “P” puck you have the first four “P” pucks of 2017 setting at an Average of 16,733, Fully 2,000+”P” pucks/coin behind the Average for the first four “P” pucks of 2016. That’s a Lot to make up before you end up with a situation of having two year old “P” pucks hanging around on the website.

    That being said, you are Correct that there seems to be a Slower Drip Down on the “P” pucks vs. a Dive off the cliffs for commemoratives, AGEs and ASEs ( both proof and bullion)…

  21. cagcrisp says

    There Will be a Gold price Increase this Afternoon…

    …SO…

    For All the Low Mintage Wonder Chasers, IF you want to Save on your FS or the Gold Proof Boys Town or the 3 coin Proof set Boys Town…Go for It…(Before it’s ALL OVER you will need that $25.00 or $12.15)…

  22. cagcrisp says

    In my Guesstimate, ALL 6 Offerings for Boys Town Will Be Low Mintage Wonders. After the Boys Town Gold Uncirculated went SO, how much difference did it make for the Low Mintage Wonder Chasers for the Boys Town ?

    Well the Price of the Boys Town Gold Proof Dropped in price by $12.15…

    …And…

    With a Drop of $12.15 in price AND the knowledge that the Gold Uncirculated was SO, there were 18% FEWER Gold Proof Boys Town coins Sold…

    …Matter of Fact…With the Knowledge that most probably ALL 6 Offerings of Boys Town will be Low Mintage Wonders, How did the Remaining 6 Boys Towns Options fair?

    The Gold Proof was Down in sales numbers by 18% from previous week

    The Silver Proof was Down in sales numbers by 28% from previous week

    The Clad Proof was Down in sales numbers by 30% from previous week

    The 3 coin Proof set was Down in sales numbers by 31% from previous week

    The Silver Uncirculated was Up in sales numbers by 60% from previous week

    The Clad Uncirculated was Up in sales numbers by 22% from previous week

  23. Buzz Killington says

    @cag —

    There are two possibilities:

    (1) No one wants to put any money in investing in future flips, possibly due to having been burned in the past; or

    (2) As I believe happened last year, any money that is going to be invested in chasing potential flips are going to pour in at the LAST possible moment — if you try this too early, you might invite others to try it, too, which could ruin the opportunity.

    The good thing about commems like this is that they do have to be pulled by a date certain, no matter how many were minted, so they don’t continue to linger, like so many other USM products.

  24. Einbahnstrasse says

    Interesting that sales on the Boys Town proofs were actually down from the previous week, despite the low-mintage status. I wonder if the market just has less of a preference for proofs than it used to. I know I personally don’t care for the gritty/sparkly look of the frost on the recent proofs; maybe I’m not the only one….

    Anyway, here again are the Boys Town sales compared to the current record-low mintages in each category:

    Gold proof: 7031 / 13266 = 53.0%
    Gold unc.: 2995 / 5150 = 58.2% and sold out
    Silver proof: 31070 / 61992 = 50.1%
    Silver unc.: 11033 / 14497 = 76.1%
    Clad proof: 22679 / 47326 = 47.9%
    Clad unc.: 14967 / 21019 = 71.2%

    So most of them appear almost certain to set new record lows. The silver unc. might just avoid that fate; it only needs to sell another 3500 coins or so, which isn’t out of the question if a few large buyers decide to stock up. It’s also probably the most attractive coin of the lot, although whether that influences anyone’s buying decisions any more is difficult to say.

  25. cagcrisp says

    @Buzz Killington, I would assume that on the Gold Proof Boys Town that will Clearly be the Low Mintage Wonder that sales will come in Before today’s Gold repricing.

    I would also assume that on the FS front that the money will come in after Hours on the Last Day.

    The FS sales will come in on the Last Day because the $25 is Less Important than being able to return the coin depending on Sales numbers released January 2nd 2018…

  26. cagcrisp says

    Goldman Sachs price prediction for Gold in 2018:

    3 months $1,225.00
    6 months $1,200.00
    12 months $1,225.00
    By end of 2020 $1,375.00

    Goldman Sachs price prediction for Silver in 2018:

    3 months $16.20
    6 months $16.00
    12 months $17.20

    “Typically, silver tends to outperform gold at the current stage of the business cycle, as it is more strongly levered to global growth given its significant industrial use,” Goldman said.

    http://www.kitco.com/news/2017-12-20/Goldman-Gold-Prices-To-Fall-Into-Mid-2018-Rally-Into-2020.html

  27. cagcrisp says

    @Einbahnstrasse, ” The silver unc. might just avoid that fate; it only needs to sell another 3500 coins or so, which isn’t out of the question if a few large buyers decide to stock up. ”

    You’re looking at these things through rose colored glasses. The Silver Uncirculated Boys Town has Sold 6,074 After Launch Week. That’s an Average of 152/wk After Launch week.

    To NOT be the Low Mintage Wonder the Silver Uncirculated Boys Town would have to sell 57% of the Total Sales numbers from the past 40 weeks…

  28. cagcrisp says

    OT

    Trump just announced that AT&T would be giving 200,000 employees a $1,000 bonus because of the passed Tax Bill.

    Anyone want to bet whether or not AT&T will now be Allowed to buy Time Warner?…

  29. Buzz Killington says

    I bet Trump’s CNN grudge will trump this news that the American Telephone and Telegraph Company has decided to give away two coiled hair stellas, divided equally amount 200,000+ employees.

  30. Einbahnstrasse says

    @cagcrisp:

    Definitely an uphill climb–but if I remember correctly, last year the NPS $5 just about did exactly that, with something like a third of the overall sales coming in the last month. Whether the BT $1 will repeat the feat is another question; but 3500 silver dollars add up to a good bit less money than 1000 gold half-eagles, so it’s certainly possible for low-mintage seekers to buy that many (if the Mint doesn’t sell out first). I wouldn’t bet on it happening, but I wouldn’t bet against it either.

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