Walton 1913 Liberty Head Nickel Acquired by GreatCollections for $4.2 million

It is the second of only five known examples of the ultra-rare 1913 Liberty Head Nickel purchased by GreatCollections within 12 months.

by Great Collections Coin and Currency Auctions l Published on October 17, 2022

(Irvine, California) – The famed Walton 1913 Liberty Head Nickel has been acquired by GreatCollections for $4.2 million. It is the second of only five known examples of the ultra-rare 1913 Liberty Head Nickel purchased by GreatCollections within 12 months.

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Recovered from a 1962 North Carolina car crash that killed its owner, George O. Walton, this rare U.S. 1913 Liberty Head nickel has been purchased from a Florida family for $4.2 million by Ian Russell, president of GreatCollections of Irvine, California. (Photo courtesy of GreatCollections.)

The Walton 1913 Nickel has one of the greatest stories to ever be told in U.S. numismatics. After being recovered from a deadly automobile accident in 1962, it was stored in an heir’s closet for decades before being uncovered to national fanfare in 2003. It was auctioned ten years later in 2013 for $3,172,500. The sellers, the Firman family, acquired the coin in 2018.

The coin was authenticated and graded PCGS Proof-63 by Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS) in 2013.

On behalf of the sellers, Ron Firman said, “Our family thoroughly enjoyed owning the Walton 1913 Nickel for the past four years and it was very fulfilling for us to have it on display at the American Numismatic Association Money Museum for all to enjoy during this entire period. The transaction with Ian and GreatCollections could not have gone any smoother. Ian was highly professional, worked quickly and took care of everything. We are looking forward to our next quest in museum-quality rarities for display.”

With only five coins known and two of those in permanent museum collections, GreatCollections acquired the Eliasberg example of the 1913 Nickel last year in an historic $13.35 million three-coin Thanksgiving day transaction with the Dexter 1804 Silver Dollar and 1894-S Proof Dime.

“The 1913 Nickel is one of the few coins that transcends into the non-numismatic world and to handle two of these in a short period of time has been a thrill. The coin market continues to gain strength, especially in rarities and ultra-rarities. We continue to maintain wantlists for the most serious collectors in U.S. coins today,” said Ian Russell, president of GreatCollections.

Over the years, some of the biggest names in numismatics have owned a 1913 Nickel, including King Farouk of Egypt, Louis Eliasberg, Col. EHR Green, Eric Newman, Dr. Jerry Buss, Bruce Morelan and Gerald Forsythe.

“It is difficult to comprehend that all three 1913 Nickels in private hands have found new homes in the past 12 months, and I do not believe any of the three will be on the market again in the near future. It could be decades before we see one again,” continued Russell.

About GreatCollections

GreatCollections, the official auction house of the American Numismatic Association, specializes in auctioning certified coins and banknotes, handling transactions from start to finish. Since its founding in 2010, GreatCollections has successfully auctioned over 1 million certified coins, making it one of the leading certified coin companies in the United States with annual sales in 2021 exceeding $235 million. Ian Russell, owner/president of GreatCollections, is a member of the prestigious Professional Numismatists Guild and member of the National Auctioneers Association. For more information aboutGreatCollections, visit www.greatcollections.com or call 800-442-6467.

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Source: Great Collections Coin and Currency Auctions

Great Collections Coin and Currency Auctions image GreatCollections is an auction house for certified coins and paper money, as well as coins approved by CAC with sales exceeding $30 million over the past 12 months. GreatCollections handles each coin/banknote transaction from start to finish. For sellers, GreatCollections offers professional imaging for each coin/note, cash advances as appropriate, and other individualized services generally not available with the large auction houses and other websites, freeing the seller to do nothing except collect the proceeds of the sale. Buyers benefit by entrusting a venue whose principals have years of numismatic experience and whose reputations in the industry are impeccable.