Kolbe & Fanning Numismatic Book Auction Tops $1,000 Per Lot

On Saturday, January 8, 2011, Kolbe & Fanning Numismatic Booksellers LLC conducted their 120th sale of rare and out-of-print numismatic literature, a public auction at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City in conjunction with the New York International Numismatic Convention.

Featured were 500 lots on a great variety of topics, including rare works on Russian coins and medals from the Dr. Ira Rezak Library, highlights from the outstanding Latin American Numismatic Library formed by Alan Luedeking, and other important works covering the numismatic spectrum.

Ninety percent of the lots in the sale sold, bringing nearly 150% of the total of their estimates, or an average of well over $1,000 per lot. Kolbe & Fanning are already planning for a January 2012 New York Sale and those interested in consigning outstanding works are invited to contact David Fanning or George Kolbe.

Less important works can be sold during the course of 2011 with highlights reserved for public sale in the numismatic capital of the world in January 2012. Interested parties are invited to contact David Fanning at df@numislit.com or (614) 414-0855 and George Kolbe at gfk@numislit.com or (909) 338-6527.

Some January 8, 2011 sale highlights include:

  • an original set of Babelon’s masterwork, Traité des Monnaies Grecques et Romaines, sold for $23,000 on a $5,000 estimate and the de Morgan continuation, estimated at $1,750, brought $7,475 (results cited include the 15% buyer premium);
  • Brenner’s classic 1731 work on Swedish coins and medals garnered a winning bid of $1,380; a nice set of Eckhel’s 1792-98 eight-volume work on ancient Greek and Roman coins was estimated at $1,500 and brought $3,737;
  • a fine example of the legendary 1905 Jacob Hirsch catalogue of the Rhousopoulos sale of Greek coins, annotated by the famous American coin dealers, the Chapman brothers, went for $3,450 on a $1,500 estimate;
  • and a superb set of the famous 1791 Beskrivelse over Danske Mynter og Medailler was estimated to bring $7,500 but sold for $13,800.

The fine selection of pre-revolutionary works on Russian coins and medals sold extremely well, bringing close to three times the estimates, and was highlighted by a handsome set of the 1916 French edition of Georges Michaïlovitch’s Monnaies de l’Empire de Russie, which realized $25,300.

The 144 lots comprising highlights from the Alan Luedeking Latin American Numismatic Library brought well over estimate. The second part of the extensive Luedeking library will be sold in early June 2011 by Kolbe & Fanning.

The American section of the sale, comprising slightly over 100 lots had its share of excellent results. A few worth mentioning include the 1875 Crosby family copy of The Early Coins of America, in a deluxe Nova Constellation three-quarter morocco binding. Originally, it undoubtedly belonged to author Sylvester Sage Crosby and it was hotly contested for, realizing $34,500 on a $12,500 estimate.

Kenyon Painter’s plated 1920 Thomas Elder sale of the Henry C. Miller collection was estimated to bring $2,500 but realized $8,625, and the numismatic correspondence files of Chicago numismatist and bibliopole Michael Powills, estimated at $5,000 were sold after spirited floor and telephone bidding for $27,600.

In April, Kolbe & Fanning plan to issue an extensive fixed price list featuring numismatic books, auction catalogues, and periodicals and, as previously mentioned, the firm will conduct a large mail-bid sale on June 2 as well as two additional sales later in the year. Inquiries may be made by contacting Kolbe & Fanning Numismatic Booksellers LLC, 141 W. Johnstown Road, Gahanna, OH 43230-2700. The firm’s website is www.numislit.com.

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