Many interesting things happen in the World Paper Money Hobby. We would like to share some of them with you from time to time.
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#3) The Spink auction at the end of last September featured the Bill Christensen – Amon Carter collection of British Caribbean banknotes. Amon’s name was not mentioned in the Spink auction catalog but the core of Bill’s collection and most of the rare notes were originally part of the Amon Carter collection. The Amon Carter collection was perhaps the most valuable private collection of world banknotes ever formed. Amon died in 1982
About 20 years ago Bill Christensen facilitated the sale of the Amon Carter collection to the William Simon (Secretary of the United States Treasury in the Nixon administration) family. As part of the deal Bill ended up with Amon’s British Caribbean collection. Bill continued to add to the collection.
We had the privilege many years ago of representing Bill in the purchase of one of the rarest notes in his collection, the Government Of St. Lucia, King George V, 1920 5 shillings. Perhaps unique, this note realized a hammer price of 22,000 pounds in the Spink sale.
Another note in the collection thought to be unique is the Barbados King George VI 1943 $100. I have a personal connection with this note I would like to share with you.
I started to attend coin shows on a regular basis in 1973, looking to buy and sell world banknotes. At the time I was a university professor with four children. Jeremy was nine years old. My financial resources were extremely limited. However, I was pretty good at poker. I was a consistent winner at a monthly game in my home town and occasionally at poker games at coin shows. It was really these winnings which launched my career as a banknote dealer.
At one such show, Ted Uhl had this Barbados $100 for sale, the very same note that was auctioned last September as part of the Bill Christensen collection. At that time, Ted often had the best and rarest notes for sale. His price for the Barbados note was $375. I was just getting started as a dealer but I knew enough to know that this was a very good note. I just didn’t know how good. I wanted to buy the note.
Well, I didn’t have $375. Not only did I not have $375, I could not write a check hoping to cover it when I got home.
That night I played poker and won enough money to buy the Barbados note. I could hardly wait for morning. I rushed to Ted’s table when the show opened only to find that he had already sold the note.
Years later I found out who bought the note and that it was sold to Amon Carter. Last September I had a second chance to buy this wonderful note at the Spink auction. The auction price went well over $375. I bought the note for a hammer price of 18,000 pounds for a client!
#2) I bought and sold my first banknotes thirty seven years ago. Jeremy joined the company twenty two years ago. We have traveled the world, purchased great collections and rare and wonderful individual notes. I enjoy telling the stories of our triumphs. Here is the story of one of our deals that was somewhat less than a triumph.
In the early 1980’s, I helped a collector build a very nice Thailand collection. The key note in the collection was a 1902 1000 ticals note (p13a) in VF, which I sold to the collector for $1,750. In 1988, we had a second opportunity to own this great note. We purchased the entire collection. I figured our cost for the 1000 ticals note to be $2,750.
After some thought, I decided to offer the note to a good friend and dealer in Bangkok. I figured $4,750 was a fair price and a good profit for us. As I was waiting for him to answer the phone I made a snap decision to increase the price to $5,500. Imagine how pleased I was when he agreed to the price.
The transaction took place two weeks before the first Singapore International Coin Show. We did not attend this show, though we subsequently attended all the others. We quickly received our $5,500 payment and arranged to have a friend deliver the note at the Singapore show.
The Spink auction catalog for the 1988 Singapore show did have a nice selection of Thailand notes including a 1902 1000 ticals note. The estimate for the Spink note was a modest US$2000 – US$2500. Obviously, I thought, we had done quite well selling our note for $5,500. Our Thai friend knew a lot more about the Thai banknote market than we did but in this case we surely did not have to worry that we had significantly underpriced our note.
The auction results were an eye opener and stunning! The 1000 ticals note brought US$30,000 plus 15% (if I remember correctly). A 50 ticals overprinted on a 1 tical (p15), which is much rarer and estimated US$450 – US$600 brought even more.
Evidently, the local Thai market was incredibly strong and active. We found out later that several wealthy Thai collectors were competing to see who could accumulate the most rarities, including the most 1000 ticals notes.
Two years later, I asked my Thai friend if he had sold the 1000 ticals we had sold him. He said he sold it the year before. How much, I asked? $50,000, he responded. Clearly, this was not one of our triumphs.
At a recent auction, a set of 1939 Bradbury Wilkinson printed Syrian notes, 1, 5, 10 and 25 livres, was hammered down for $8000! An amazing price even if the set was UNC as advertised. I first encountered these notes when I purchased a similar set in lower grade, of course, for $1.20. In fact, I purchased quite a few sets at this price.
I AM ALWAYS LOOKING TO BUY BANKNOTES
Current Price List: MAY 2013 Price List
The demand is getting stronger for the Scarce and desirable banknotes. If you see something you like out there, it would be a good idea to acquire it sooner than later.
I am pleased to be able to offer another varied and interesting selection of World Banknotes this week. Please, let me know if you are thinking of selling any banknotes. Enjoy
A Scarce and interesting South Vietnam 20 Dong (1956) P4 proof has been added to the Gallery. Take a look.
Thank you for the nice offers to purchase banknotes. It is always very nice to receive unsolicited offers to sell me banknotes. This helps to keep my offers fresh and interesting.
TWITTER: You can check in from time to time for updates or Banknote related information. My Twitter I.D. is: JeremyST1
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