E-Auction 26

Closing August 29, 2018
E26, Lot 121

"The Muffin Man," a great and important rarity in the D&H series. Middlesex 1009 (RR) Political and Social Series. Dimsdale. Æ halfpenny. 11.38 gm. 30 mm. 1796. A man with a tricorner hat and a basket on his arm walking with a cane; SR. HARRY DIMSDALE MUFFIN MARCHT / ELECTED MAYOR OF GARRAT 1796 within sprigs of roses. Prooflike Uncirculated; as made, slight marks mostly from the dies; advanced die failure. Dramatic and beautiful. I could find no other examples on the market since this piece was sold in Waite Sanderson (1944) (AD).

Ex Shorthouse (1890). Ex Hamer (1930). Ex Waite Sanderson (1944).

Three other examples of this rare and distinctive piece have appeared in major collections (Davis 1901. Lincoln (?) 1936. D&H plate coin (Cokayne?). Interestingly, viewing the images for the other three was the rapidity with which the die seems to have deteriorated. Given the extreme rarity of this piece, the break was early and drastic. The example offered here may well be the final strike.

This piece is from the 1930 Hamer sale (photographed), sold again in Waite Sanderson, 1944 (not photographed as was the case with wartime auctions but tied back to Hamer). The Hamer sale noted ex Shorthouse, a late 19th-early 20th century metal dealer whose primary interest was stamp collecting. The buyer at the Hamer sale is noted as Rolls. (£5, 5/) (Manville has biographical information on Shorthouse but not on Rolls.)

The next piece, in reverse order of die deterioration, is the Davis piece, sold in 1901 by Sotheby. The buyer is listed as Spink.

The third piece, a bit less damaged than the Davis piece, was sold by Glen’s in 1936 in an unnamed sale that is generally considered to be Lincoln.

Finally, the D&H plate coin shows little die failure though the weakness in the lower right quadrant (obverse view) is plain. I do not know whose piece this was though it might be Cokayne. Tokens from his collection can be tied to the D&H images when there is something distinctive about the appearance of an individual piece.

I have found no recent sales for the piece. The exhaustive collection sold by Jim Noble in 1998 did not have an example. The extensive and detailed record published by Gary Sriro lacks an example of this token as well.

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Welcome to E-Auction 26

By the time this sale closes the mid-August ANA Convention will be over. Lief and Allan will be there for a couple of days. Mid-August would have been the logical time for this sale to close but the additional couple of weeks allows you a bit more time to consider the wide variety of things we have pulled together. 

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