4 generations of coin hoarding

Discussion in 'US Coins Forum' started by Kevin Dore, Aug 7, 2018.

  1. Kevin Dore

    Kevin Dore Active Member

    I just got exciting news! I was talking to a dear friend a while back and she told me that her mother had tons of coins that have been thrown into jars for 4 generations. I said I'd love to go through them and organize them for her. I made an offer to do this in exchange for being able to keep a few coins I like to cover costs of materials. She discussed it with her mom and she agreed! I get to pick up this hoard in a couple days. I'm almost shaking with excitement right now. This is there thing I enjoy doing the most. I'm going in armed with a bunch of 2x2 flips, some coin tubes, and some album pages. I'll have to pick up an album to put them in. I know I'll be dealing with coins that I have very little knowledge of, so once I get them I'm sure I'll be back here with tons of questions seeking advice, but for now does anybody have any preliminary advice going into this? I can't think of any questions until I see the coins so I know what I'm dealing with. Unfortunately she did say another family member picked through it already and pulled what she thought was valuable, so I'm sure most or all of the silver is gone, but I hope she wasn't armed with any numismatic knowledge and I may be able to find some hidden treasures.
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  3. rickmp

    rickmp Frequently flatulent.

    You don't need the newest edition, but you do need this book.
  4. Kevin Dore

    Kevin Dore Active Member

    I do have an older version, but I do believe most of the up to date pricing can be found online.
    TrungQuocDon likes this.
  5. dwhiz

    dwhiz Collector Supporter

    Don't use the red book for up to date pricing.
    Use eBay sold, HA.com, these are better indicators.
    coinsareus10 and coin0709 like this.
  6. rickmp

    rickmp Frequently flatulent.

    I agree with @dwhiz.
    Don't use Red Book for pricing.
    dwhiz likes this.
  7. Kevin Dore

    Kevin Dore Active Member

    I'm familiar with using eBay sold listings for pricing. Not familiar with HA.com. will check that out
    dwhiz likes this.
  8. Randy Abercrombie

    Randy Abercrombie Supporter! Supporter

    I was called in several months back to do the same for a friend of mine whose father had passed. This was his safe. He also had heavy jars slap full of everything. It was a daunting task to say the least. To me I felt rather like a kid with unlimited ride tickets at the amusement park..... From my experience, I would suggest a simple organization first. It's easy to get sidetracked looking up interesting coins. I consumed several days like that before I realized I was wasting a lot of time. Organize first then do your research.

  9. Seattlite86

    Seattlite86 Outspoken Member

    I have helped go through collections and I agree with this wholeheartedly. Organize it as best as possible and root out any common stuff as quickly as possible. Pull the best examples of a wheat cent bunch and throw it in a 2x2. Toss the rest into a pile to be looked at later. Put together a little notebook (three ring binder with 2x2s and pages if you wish) that has maybe one of each type of coin (assuming this is mostly US) that was in the collection. The family will love it.
    Randy Abercrombie likes this.
  10. Kevin Dore

    Kevin Dore Active Member

    Unlimited ride tickets at an amusement park. I like that. Will probably be about how I feel. Yes, the first step I always take is to go a preliminary sorting. I'm sure I will waste a lot of time along the way myself and I'll reach that point where I say screw it I need to get this done.
    Randy Abercrombie likes this.
  11. Kevin Dore

    Kevin Dore Active Member

    That's exactly how I have my own collection organized and I intend to do the same. I intend to come up with a plan then discuss it with her before proceeding. I don't want to do way more than they expect and end up giving them sticker shock at the end
    Seattlite86 likes this.
  12. physics-fan3.14

    physics-fan3.14 You got any more of them.... prooflikes? Supporter

    The red book isn't great for pricing, but it will give you an idea of what the key dates are. It is a convenient thing to have at the table when you're sorting through piles of coins.

    The best advice that I can give you about this hoard is to be honest with yourself and with the owner. Tell them what they have, tell them what you want, and work out a fair value for the work that you do. You're Integrity will be rewarded. I had a friend once who took on a task like yours, and he was tempted by the valuable coins he found. He wound up stealing from the people he was trying to help... And it did not wind up well.
  13. Kevin Dore

    Kevin Dore Active Member

    You are right about integrity. I know there will be that temptation. I'd be lying if I said otherwise. But I know myself will enough and she knows me well enough that there is trust there. And of course I would never violate that. What I'm thinking of doing is calculating cost of materials after I sort then and before I start to put things into flips and tubes. Then I'll offer a price probably slightly over blue book value for some coins I want. I have no interest in being compensated for my time. Knowing her she will probably tell me to take more than that, so yes I'm sure my integrity will be rewarded. I'll also try to offer to buy the whole lot at a fair price but I have to guess that there is enough sentimental value that they will probably refuse. But I have to try. To give you a little background here, this woman is disabled. Almost completely bed ridden. My wife takes care of her and I help with that at times. Occasionally when I have to do her shopping for groceries I will pay for them myself because I know she is on a very limited budget and she has caught me a couple times, so she has also been over generous with me which I usually have to kindly refuse.
    Seattlite86 and Hoky77 like this.
  14. Kevin Dore

    Kevin Dore Active Member

    Huge disappointment today. As I had mentioned, a family member had gone through and snagged some of the collection. I was hoping that they had just pulled a portion of it, but unfortunately we found out that the vast majority of it is indeed gone. A preliminary look through showed a lot of typical wheat cents, a good bit of silver left, almost all of it cull of course, not much at all left of collector value. I'll still go through it in hopes of finding something to give her exciting news about but my hopes are low. What once filled a couple 5 gallon buckets now probably would fit in a gallon jug. This relative that pilfered the collection knew what was of value.
  15. Randy Abercrombie

    Randy Abercrombie Supporter! Supporter

    What a bummer. Greed raises its ugly head. Unfortunately a familiar scenario in family inheritance deals. I know you were looking forward to that. So sorry.
    Kevin Dore likes this.
  16. Kevin Dore

    Kevin Dore Active Member

    Thanks for the sympathy. I blame myself for getting my hopes up so much. Even when she told me that somebody had gone through and taken all the "good stuff" I tried to convince myself that the average person looking through a collection like that wouldn't know much about what is worth something and what isn't. But in this instance I was wrong, and she did know exactly what to take. I'm upset for my friend. It was her aunt that took everything when the grandparents passed. She took all the jewelry and a lot of other valuable stuff too of course. I didn't get the whole story until today. It's not a total loss though. There was still a significant amount of wheat cents left. Maybe a few hundred. Not much value there. And about $40 FV of silver. Including $6 FV mercury dimes. A few of which seem VF or may be one or two EF. Nothing great I know but anything worth more than melt value is still good. Also 3 peace dollars, one of which in nice condition. And a single walking liberty half dollar. Even the buffalo nickels got taken except for a small handful. It really does suck because she told me there was some half cents and some 3 cent nickels in there, so I know there was some really really cool stuff at one time
  17. Seattlite86

    Seattlite86 Outspoken Member

    I understand your frustration. Without going down a rabbit hole, my biological mother (who I last saw when I was 2) had passed in the 90s. Unbeknownst to me, she was a coin collector. At a family reunion, I was handed her collection that someone had been holding onto. That thing had been picked dry, which was sad, because there were cases in there labeled $2.50 and $5.00 gold. Even so, I organized what was left, put it all in 2x2s (writing the coin info on all 2x2s) and placed the coins into a binder and returned it to the family member. At least the collection still has some meaning as a sentimental piece that connects us to her. Silver linings.
    Rheingold and Kevin Dore like this.
  18. Santinidollar

    Santinidollar Supporter! Supporter

    I’ve had my own experiences with family members trying to loot my mother’s estate. I won’t have any more experiences with them. They showed their true color.

    Unfortunately, this seems to be a common experience for many. What is wrong with these people?
    Seattlite86 likes this.
  19. juris klavins

    juris klavins Well-Known Member

    Blue book prices are closer to what you can expect a dealer to offer for your coins

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  20. Bert Gedin

    Bert Gedin Well-Known Member

    If it already has been sorted by a family member of limited integrity, why should you get involved ? The wheat has been removed from the chaff, so now there is, probably, only chaff left. This situation could spell trouble for you or your wife. Maybe you could offer to buy the remnants at a fair price. But tell the lady she better be careful with that "helpful" relative - seems she has been sufficiently fleeced already !
    coinsareus10 likes this.
  21. Ron W

    Ron W Member

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