Sunday, February 23, 2014

Market Watch

This week's market watch is for February 16-22. There were 98 ebay sales this week with a few group lots thrown in. On balance, it was an active week with many nice tokens trading hands -- 103 CTs in all.
     As expected, most CTs sold in the C range with 57 crossing the block for under $20. There were 32 CTs sold in the B range with 9 more hammered down for BB money. Five CTs sold above this mark: two in the A range (over $75) and three in the AA category (over $100).
KB stands for the parish name, but
CL that splits the date is a mystery.
The minister is listed as Robert
Muir who served from 1688-1719.
     Two of the top CTs were American pieces that were discussed a couple of days ago. If we look back at the AA CTs for the last quarter, the top three are American pieces, followed by six Irish CTs, and seven Scottish pieces -- two of them, hearts.
     American tokens aside, the other AA CT sold this week came out of a series of 19 pieces offered by cobwrightfortishe. The CT was a 17th century square, dated 1692, from Kilbride in East Lanark, cataloged as BK571. "Quaint script" lettering (as Brook described it) and a bold date contributed to its desirability as a early piece. Add to this, a pleasant ashen patina with great eye and you get active bidding: 14 bids from four bidders pushed the price up to $106. Here is the link: Kilbride CT dated 1692.
     Early CTs for the 17th century are always in demand, as age is alluring -- we never get to be that old, so the survivorship of these pieces fascinates. These CTs come from turbulent times in Scottish (and Presbyterian) history, so they play an important role in our armchair history-making. There are 97 pieces from the 17th century identified by Burzinski in the Scottish series with half of them dated.
The primitive W on this square from
Strichen adds to its allure as an 17th
 century relic from the Kirk.
     Another 17th century piece sold for A money just as the week was closing. This one was an undated irregular square from Strichen in Aberdeen that sold for $72 with five bidders casting eight bids. It was a single-sided piece with primitive letters: M/WS -- Minister William Scott who served 1627 to 1662. It was cataloged as BK1052. But there was more: another 17th century square from Strichen sold for BB money: BK1053. Note that Aberdeen has the largest number of early pieces cataloged.
     The second A CT was an Irish piece. It was a rectangular token from Gilford, dated 1844, offered by Simmons Gallery. There was not much of a bidding war, as three participants each entered a single bid. The piece was hammered down for $87. A similar CT sold last October for about $130.
     Interestingly, a second monogrammed Inveresk CT dated 1727 (BK536) was offered with little fanfare this week -- this curious token was profiled in late January when cobwrightfortishe sold one for AA money. This time, seven bidders cautiously entered 25 bids, but a last minute bid took it for $55. It is considered a rare piece, but its monogram (or cypher) is what makes it a conversation starter.
     Also of note, three more copper pieces were sold this week -- all from the Aberdeen CT collection that was sold over the last few weeks. An oval from New Byth (BZ5205) traded hands for only $33. Also, a rude rectangular cut of stamped sheet metal (BZ26; BK282) sold for $34 -- several of these have been sold in the past year. Another piece (one that I neglected to mention last week) was from Monquhitter (BZ4944); it sold for $30. Hence, we have seen most of the copper CTs (excluding varieties) from ABD cross the block recently.

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