Edward Cogan - Thomas Cleneay Collection - S.H. & H. Chapman 12/1890:1796, $100 - S.H. & H. Chapman - John G. Mills Collection - S.H. & H. Chapman 4/1904:1229, $125 - George H. Earle, Jr. Collection - Henry Chapman 6/1912:3351, $80 - S. H. Chapman - Carl Wurtzbach Collection, sold privately in 1919 - Virgil M. Brand Collection, sold privately in 2/7/1941 - B. G. Johnson (St. Louis Stamp & Coin Co.), sold privately on 2/21/1944 - Arthur E. Fritz - Rudolph Khol - Federal Coin Exchange Fixed Price List 1952, $1,200 - Federal Coin Exchange 8/1954:1014 $1,050 - Dr. James O. Sloss Collection, sold privately in 9/1958 - R.E. “Ted” Naftzger, Jr. Collection - A. Kosoff 10/1959:1, $1,900 - Stack's - Dr. Herbert L. Ketterman - RARCOA “Auction ‘84” 8/1984:1507, $29,700 - RARCOA - Anthony Terranova - Dr. Haig Koshkarian Collection - Anthony Terranova - Dr. Eugene Sherman Collection - D. Brent Pogue Collection - Stack's/Bowers 2/2016:3012, $470,000
Discovered in Europe - Sotheby Parke Bernet 11/1974:59 - Mike Brownlee - Ken Goldman - Julian Leidman and Stanley Kesselman - R.E. Naftzger, Jr. 12/1986 - Herman Halpern Collection - Stack's 3/1988:1 - Anthony Terranova - Bowers & Merena Galleries - Heritage 10/1990:452 - Anthony Terranova, 11/1990 - Dr. Haig Koshkarian - American Numismatic Rarities 3/2004:7, $218,500 - Dan Holmes Collection - Goldbergs 9/2009:1, $368,000
Purchased in 1941 by J.S. Gensheimer (Stack's, 2/1951), lot 396, $240 - Willard C. Blaisdell - J.J. Teaparty (1976) - Ed Hipps - Dean Oakes - Julian Leidman (7/1994) - John B. MacDonald - Denis W. Loring - Walt Husak Collection - Heritage 2/2008:2000, $172,500 - Heritage 1/2013:5508, $164,500
David Hall: The remarkable Gem AMERI graded SP65BN by PCGS is from the incredible Ted Naftzger collection. The Naftzger collection was not only the greatest large cent collection ever assembled, it was one of the greatest coin collections ever assembled. Naftzger worked dilligenty on his set for 40 years and what he accomplished may never be duplicated. The SP65 Chain AMERI literally has semi-PL surfaces. It is amazing that a Chain cent could survive in such outstanding condition.
Ron Guth: According to Sheldon and Breen, the AMERI. variety was the first of the Chain Cents (the obverse die was used later with a reverse with AMERICA spelled completely). Why the abbreviation? The spacing of the reverse suggests that the engraver began the word AMERICA too high on the die. Had AMERICA been spelled out completely, it would have ended too close to UNITED (the spacing on the later reverse has AMERICA starting lower on the die). Breen repeats the speculation that the abbreviation was deliberate, following the style of the unfinished pyramid on the Great Seal of the United States, but there is no evidence to support such an association.
This was the only use of the reverse die which, in a later state, shows a crack over TATE of STATES that eventually develops into a rim cud. The obverse die was used later on Sheldon 2.
Sources and/or recommended reading:
"Penny Whimsy" by Dr. William H. Sheldon
"Walter Breen's Encyclopedia of Early United States Cents 1793-1814" by Walter Breen
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