N England Shilling MS (PCGS# 13)

The January 2013 Americana Sale

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Lot Description
1652 Massachusetts Bay Colony NE Shilling. Noe III-B, Salmon 3-C, W-80. Rarity-7. EF-40 (PCGS). CAC. Secure Holder. 68.3 grains. As the first metallic currency in the British Colonies, the NE coinage is easily one of the most famous -- and important -- of all colonial issues. Deep golden-gray throughout with no surface marks to draw the viewer's eye. We do note, however, some faint old scratches around NE that come to light under low magnification. Some soft depressions and faint planchet waviness are seen, as made and are characteristic of genuine NE Shillings. &nbsp;NE punched at the 11 o'clock position, XII punched at the 1 o'clock position on their respective sides. The NE and XII are boldly and deeply punched, with just a hint of weakness in the surrounding cartouches.<br /> <br /> A rare variety among a rare design type, with Noe III-B as offered here missing from some of the most important collections ever formed, including Stearns, Garrett, Picker, Norweb, Roper, the Hain Family Collection, MHS (1970), and Oechsner. The present piece is easily the visual equal -- and essentially the physical equal -- of Ford Part XII, lot 2 (Stack's, October 2005), the famous Wurtzbach Plate coin. When cataloger Michael Hodder wrote the description for Ford Part XII:2, he noted that he had seen but four examples of Noe III-B, a figure that included the Ford-Wurtzbach piece, and went on to note that Noe III-B is "extremely rare." Jack Howes' masterful article on the NE coinage in Colonial Newsletter 144 documents only 8 distinct examples of Noe III-B, and this specimen, a fresh example recently discovered in Great Britain and previously unknown to the numismatic fraternity, would make a ninth example of the variety.&nbsp;<br /> <br /> From a relatively late state of the dies, with a bold crack from the bottom of the E downward through the tail of the N, below which it forks into two cracks; this is a later state than Ford:2. On the reverse denomination, the second I is slight
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