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Rock bands on gold coins?!

The Royal Mint just started a new series called Music Legends. It's an annual program and each year they'll feature a different band on silver, 1/4 gold, and 1oz gold coins. The first band was Queen and the two gold pieces sold out immediately. Here's mine, got it to add to my Symphony Set. The first modern band to make it into the Symphony Set!

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What makes a coin valuable?!

None of this should be news to most collectors here, but the vast majority of my online followers are not coin collectors and ask all the time why some coins are worth so much money! So I thought I'd attempt an answer for them.

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Collection Highlight No. 2 - 1795 Middlesex-Forster's Token

This is the second in a series of posts which highlight various standout pieces from my personal collection. Today we're taking a look at my 1795 Middlesex-Forster's token, one of the first pieces purchased for my Symphony Set. You can view hi-res pictures here (or just enjoy them in the video!). Obverse: Crown and date surrounded by musical notation for "God Save The King", which is also the melody used for "America (My Country, Tis of Thee)". Reverse: "WM Forster. Violin, Tenor

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Are 2020 Proof Silver Eagles Profitable?!

I considered buying 100 of these from the Mint and sending in a bulk submission to NGC so I could then sell them on eBay. With pre-sales for PF 70s at $97.95 from all the major bullion dealers, should be some decent profit, right? Then I ran the numbers... Ouch!

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I'm ready for my closeup...

After the wonderful response to my previous Journal entry, the first in my Collection Highlights series, I decided to turn the idea into a video series as well. So from here on out, each Collection Highlight post will be presented as both a text Journal entry, and a short video like the one featured here. This being the first video in the series, I hope you'll check it out and let me know what you think. Any feedback on information or features that should be added to future videos in this s

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Collection Highlight No. 1 - 1926 America Sesqui

This is the first in a new Journal series I'll be working on called "Collection Highlights". I also have a custom registry set where all of these highlights will be included for easy viewing in the future. This series features standout coins from my collection as I work to rebuild my registry sets after selling the majority of my collection to fund a move across the country and the purchase of a new home (this particular piece was one of the few that I just couldn't let go). I have pho

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Coin Cover Wall Art

I've had a set of Westward Journey first day coin covers for years. I always liked the designs (of both the coins and the covers). And I am a big fan (maybe the only fan? hah!) of the Sacagawea dollars. So I bought a coin cover of the first issue, and then had it signed by both obverse designer Glenna Goodacre, and reverse designer Thomas D. Rogers, Sr. (after we had a nice chat about his design via email). But all six coin covers have been locked up in my safe for years, where I

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Most Improved

Decided to re-shoot a few coin pics last night. I chose coins where I definitely felt there was some room for improvement in the photography department. I take all of my own pictures, first with a lot of advice from Brandon (brg5658), and second with a few of my own learned tricks. After editing the pics this morning, it was clear that the 5oz silver America the Beautiful specimen coin was the winner for "most improved". (you can view it full size and with the reverse in my custom set called

New Scores for my Symphony Set

Pun intended. Back in 2012 my custom Symphony Set won NGC's Most Creative award. Thanks NGC! The Symphony Set is a collection of world and US coins and tokens that include musical elements or themes, from composers to instruments to sheet music. I haven't added to it in three years as I was away from coins while moving across the country and selling my business. But now that I'm back I have added a number of new coins to the Symphony Set, and I re-imaged the entire set last week. So I thou

55 and seeing Doubled on Lincoln's Birthday

Post your Lincoln cents! Today is Lincoln's birthday and I just picked up a great 1955 Doubled Die for my collection. This particular example is graded MS 63 RB by NGC. It's estimated about 24,000 of these error coins made it out of the mint (40,000 were produced, but 16,000 were destroyed once the error was discovered). The error coins were found in circulating change by the end of the year, initially in upstate New York and Boston. A number of those '55 doubled die cents were found in ci

Ten Years Since the "Cheerios Dollar" Discovery

The discovery of the prototype reverse was made in February of 2005, to celebrate I recently purchased this second high-grade example. Who would have thought that free dollar coins given away inside boxes of Cheerios would later sell for over $20,000 each at auction? In 2000, the US Mint was scheduled to release a new dollar coin. After failed attempts in the past, the Mint was set on promoting and distributing the new "golden" Sacagawea dollars as widely as possible. One such promotional de

This VDB came home after a few years...

I purchased this coin in 2012, paying a bit of a premium over other 1909 VDBs at the time, but I believe it to be a premium coin. A year later I began selling some of my collection as an unexpected move across the country and a new home purchase needed financing. When my friend Brandon (brg5658) heard I was listing some of my coins, he immediately made me an offer for this VDB, as he had seen it in hand to photograph it and had complimented the coin on a few occasions. I sold it to him at th

I don't know about an arm, but this one definitely cost a leg...

My new 3-legged buffalo nickel! One of the most popular variety or error coins in history, the three-legged buffalo is most commonly attributed to a mint employee overpolishing a very worn die and completely erasing the buffalo's front-most leg in the process. The error was discovered in 1939 and eventually added to the Red Book, making it an instant key date as exact mintages are unknown, but relatively very low, especially in relation to demand. A high grade 4-legged 1937-D nickel will s

My Updated Sesqui Gold Commemorative

A beautiful new piece. About three years ago I bought an MS 63 gold Sesquicentennial commemorative. I love the design of this coin, both the obverse and the reverse are intriguing. On the obverse you have Liberty holding the Declaration of Independence in one hand, and the Torch of Freedom in the other. The reverse is Independence Hall in Philadelphia with a faint sun rising behind the building. You can read much more about the history behind this coin in my gold commemorative registry set,

The Symphony Set

I started one of my first custom sets this past week. It's so liberating not focusing on "filling slots", but instead trying to build a unique, cohesive thematic set. I call it The Symphony Set. The Symphony Set consists of coins featuring musical designs, such as composers, musical instruments, performers, notation or lyrics, opera houses, and other related music topics. My "day job" is president of a successful indie record label, so I've always been drawn to the very few coins which foc

My New Sesqui Set

Check out the picture below! Since day one that I signed up for the Collector's Society here at NGC, I've had the 1926 Sesquicentennial Gold Commemorative at the top of my want list. I'm not really a commemorative collector, but I saw it one day while paging through the Red Book fell in love. The Coin The coin is gold, containing just over 1/10th of an ounce. It was designed by John R. Sinnock and was distributed at the 1926 Sesquicentennial fair in Philadelphia to help raise funds for the

A coin that would make Grandpa smile!

Workin' my way backwards... I'm working on a First Year of Issue Type Set. I started with the most recent coin types and I'm quickly working my way backwards. Figured that'd allow me to pick up a few examples relatively quickly and cheaply before I start getting too buried in the past... and auction receipts. Picked up this very nice MS 67 RD example of a 1909 VDB Lincoln cent. Sure, it's not a San Fran example, but it sure is gorgeous. It currently has an NGC graded population of 78, with o

My New Cheerios Dollar

Fewer than 100 examples in the numismatic marketplace (both NGC and PCGS combined) make this one of the harder finds for the 100 Greatest U.S. Modern Coins set. And I think it's awesome. In 2000 the Mint wanted to show off their new "golden" dollar, so they minted 5,500 examples to be included in random Cheerios cereal boxes. These 5,500 examples used a different reverse from what ended up on all the other Sacagawea dollars minted in that and all future years. Note the tail feathers. They ar

100 Greatest U.S. Modern Coins

The cat is out of the bag now. I noticed the registry set for the 100 Greatest U.S. Modern Coins about two weeks ago, and was quietly building my set all alone as the only registered set in the category. I already owned a few of the coins on the list, as they intrigued me, so it was fun starting with a few slots already knocked out. But two days ago, NGC announced the registry listing, and as I type this there are 17 sets, and I've been bumped from 1st to 7th place. No biggie, competition is