At 6:00 p.m. on August 9, 2012, Stack’s Bowers Galleries began one of the most anticipated auction sessions ever—the sale of the Battle Born Collection of Carson City coins. The collection consisted of one example of each of the 111 different dates and denominations produced at the Carson City Mint, and it was only the second complete collection ever assembled. For more about the set and its compilation and history, please read the Reno Gazette Journal’s article, ‘Battle Born:’ Rare Carson Mint coins going to auction on Philadelphia stage.
The standing-room-only Rarities Night auction began with an inspiring speech by Rusty Goe, the Battle Born Collection's architect, about the significance of the coins and event. The most anticipated moment of the auction came when the unique 1873-CC Without Arrows dime crossed the block, setting a new record hammer-price of $1.6 million. With the 15% buyers fee tacked on, the total price realized for this elite rarity totaled a whopping $1.84 million. Cheers were heard throughout the auction room.
1873-CC Without Arrows Dime Sells for $1.84 Million at Battle Born Collection Auction
Other rarities also ascended to jaw-dropping price levels, with the 1873-CC Without Arrows quarter (one of five known) and 1876-CC Twenty-cent piece (one of 19 known) going for $460,000 each, and the finest-known Carson City-minted gold piece, an 1876-CC half eagle, selling for $477,250, buyer’s fees included.
The sale of the Battle Born Collection of Carson City Coins will go down in history, not only for the prices realized, but also for the significance of the event itself, as another complete collection of Carson City coins may never be built again, let alone go to auction at one sitting. All told, the 111 coins sold collectively for over $9.77 million—pretty astonishing, for only $696.65 in face value!