Harvey Stack Remembers: Growing up in a Numismatic Family, Part 65

Meanwhile, our business of presenting auctions and serving our clients continued. Some collectors had decided that 1974 was a year to sell, and our Public Auction program brought some great collections to market. In the early part of the year, we offered more of the collection formed by the famous Adams Family to benefit the Massachusetts Historical Society. A little more than 1,700 lots were sold to help the Society raise funds to preserve the historical documents that were in their museum.

In March 1974 we offered the Estate of Phillip Spiers, a comprehensive collection of coins and paper money of the United States. April brought our sale of Part 2 of the Albert Globus Collection of Gold Coins of the World, a prize winning cabinet.

In May and June we sold several smaller collections of high quality which offered many scarce pieces. Our September sale featured items from the Estate of S.G. Steckler, who had been a client of Stack’s for over three decades. Featured were many early United States Proofs from 1858 through modern times.

November brought our catalog of the Henry C. Gibson Collection of United States Gold Coins. This cabinet featured a vast and almost complete offering of the standard issues of Pioneer and Territorial gold coins, many acquired from our prior sales, such as the George Walton Collection. There were also rare dates and quality pieces of all denominations of United States gold coins. On the following day, we offered a selection of colonial coins called the Donald Grove Collection, a pseudonym for Donald Partrick that he asked us to use so that few would know that he was selling some of his vast collection. Even though most were duplicates of his primary collection, they were of very high quality and rarity and attracted very enthusiastic bidding.

In December of 1974, we were privileged to catalog and sell the W. Earl Spies Collection of Early U.S. Silver Dollars from 1794 to 1803. This comprised most of the varieties listed in Bolender’s specialized reference book Early Silver Dollars 1794 to 1803. This was among the most complete offerings of early silver dollars to come on to the market in many decades. Attendance at the sale was astounding as specialized collectors from all over the country flocked to the Auction to acquire some of the great rare varieties that Mr. Spies had assembled.

So as discussed above, 1974 was a hectic year. We had great auctions, we helped with the challenge faced by the Smithsonian and the Mint wishing to mount coin exhibits for the Bicentennial and, sadly, we lost a great member of Stack’s, my uncle Joseph B. Stack. As my father, Morton had passed away seven years earlier, we were fortunate that my son Larry had entered the firm. With Larry on board , we continued to have family members who were dedicated to helping our clients, as well as our dedicated staff of superb numismatists to back us up. We were able to keep Stack’s at the forefront as a leader in numismatics.

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