Sunday, June 14, 2015

JR Newsletter: 14 June 2015 (245)

We have two contributions this week, with the first from Winston Zack:

Dear JR Newsletter readers,

Our great friend Kirk Gorman, noted researcher, author, dedicated contributor to the JRCS, and all around wonderful guy is not well. He was recently diagnosed with a brain tumor. The most recent information from his oncologist is that it is no longer operable, although alternative treatments are being investigated. Rory Rea has been a wonderful friend helping out and looking after Kirk at this time.

In better news, we are happy to announce that Kirk's girlfriend Sophie gave birth to their first child this morning. Henry David Gorman was born early in the morning on June 14, weighing 7 lbs 1 oz, and 19 inches long.

At this point in time, Kirk is spending a lot of time with his family and is very thankful to have the love and support from his numismatic friends.

If you would like to send any "get well" or "congratulations on the birth of your son" messages or cards to Kirk and Sophie please feel free to contact me at my email address: stoneman101(at)


Alan V. Weinberg wrote about a recently closed eBay auction:

Go to eBay and check item 331568951596, a 1787 contemporary counterfeit half dollar at $1525.

Link to closed eBay auction:  LINK to eBay

Variety 4A (1 previously known), noticeable obverse horizontal die crack; the other in Mark Glazer's collection. This eBay item likely won by "an East Coast dealer" (name omitted by editor).  I was 3rd underbidder. Few people knew about it due to its obscure categorization. Mark Glazer only knew about it as I checked with him days before it sold to guesstimate its value. We both assumed $1500+ would buy it but I lowered my sniper bid to $800+ out of concern over the black residue.

You can read it was found in an old estate house and was sold by a non-numismatist who evidently checked out its value before listing it at $599.

The seller told me that the black encrustation was hard tar-like. Likely the copper leaching to the surface of the German Silver planchet and corroding. Problematic it can be dissolved in acetone.  The so-called test cut is more likely a planchet split as German Silver is a hard brittle metal. One of the other pictured 1787s also has a similar edge split.