A few thoughts on the mysterious 1833 JR-2 proof dime sold on eBay. The photograph certainly appears to be exactly that; while circulation strikes of the JR-2 bear the familiar lower obverse crack, at least one known proof example, and this coin, do not. The only two 1833 proof dimes to appear at auction (as far as I know) since 1980 were the Pittman/Benson/Turtle Rock specimen in an NGC Proof-66 holder and the Bowers&Merena 6/89:90 (later Heritage 8/08:1605) now in a PCGS Proof-66 holder. Neither of these coins is the one pictured in the eBay sale (in fact the coin in the eBay sale is one I have never seen). There is another example in the Smithsonian collection (according to the late, great Russ Logan). NGC claims to have graded two Proof-66 coins and two in 65, and PCGS lists one each in 64, 65, and 66. Some of these (or all) could be re-grades of the same coins. There are no known circulation strikes extant with a grade higher than MS-63.
The eBay seller has only sold 5 coins on the site (plus some stamps), and what I find most interesting is that if you look at his past sales, they include several 19th Century type coins whose photos look to be of very high grade (raw) coins. And in each of those auctions, the seller states in his description "photos are reference photos". Huh? Reference photo? The buyer feedback in these deals range from "thanks for the credit" to "had problem and seller resolved" to "A++++"(!). Could this be a (non-stolen) gem proof, raw, bust dime? Sure. I guess anything is possible. But especially given this seller's proclivity to market coins based on "reference photos", call me suspicious. What is the main mystery to me is where he got this particular reference photo; maybe someone on this board knows of an example for which I am not aware.
Alan Bricker wrote:
I am commenting regarding the eBay listing of an 1833 JR-2 dime as reported in the issue dated December 4, 2011. Not even to mention the short sale and no-return, a brief investigation of the seller's feedback history, etc. quickly reveals this listing to be almost certainly fraudulent. Another listing showed a "Gem BU" 1853 NO ARROWS / No Rays quarter, "selling" for a mere $200(!) ... probably an online community discussion arose regarding this listing. Note also that the seller's eBay purchases involved only low-end coins and that most of the limited number of transactions involved low-end stamps. My guess is that the images used in those high-end coin listings had been stolen from a different website. If it sounds too good to be true, then it probably is.
David Lange wrote:
We also need your nominations for consideration for the JRCS Hall of Fame. You can nominate as many individuals as you wish for either the veteran category, those contributing to the hobby prior to the advent of JRCS or the modern category, those participating since the club was begun. This is a great way to recognize the collectors and researchers tat have contributed to our hobby. It all begins with your nominations.
The latest issue of the journal, the last for the year, is going to the printers this week. You can expect to see it in your mailbox soon. There will also be a ballot for the voting on the Jules Reiver Literary Award. Please send back your votes.
There will also be a dues notice included in the envelope. Please send your renewal check to secretary Crain as soon as possible to continue receiving the JRJ.
We will also be having a regional meeting of the JRCS at the upcoming FUN convention in Orlando. Glenn Peterson has arranged the meeting for Friday afternoon. Please check he convention program for the exact time and room number. We will be having an educational presentation at the meeting on Bust Half patterns and related pieces. We look forward to seeing you there.