***LEARNING About Matte Proof Lincolns***

Discussion in 'US Coins Forum' started by The Penny Lady®, Aug 23, 2009.

  1. OmegaPM

    OmegaPM Junior Member

    Great Job!

    This is a superbly informative article. Many collectors don't even know that proofs were minted from 1909-1916, let alone a matte proof. I assembled a set for a client about a year ago and unless you know this market, you may never own one of these truly rare coins. Forget about buying them at "priceguide" levels.
    I have yet to meet a dealer who will sell at gray sheet, they just can't be bought at those levels; at least I can't buy them!
    Collectors who know these coins, pay what they need to get them. It's that simple. I have 3 extras that I thought would sell on eBay. Not realizing that the level of collector sophistication simple didn't support that theory. I had offers of $500-$900 for high end pieces!
    That's OK, no need for the money. Our set is complete (VDB through 16) and we are quite happy with them.
    Thanks for the article. Maybe you could do some pricing info to help collectors realize just how rare these are?
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  3. jello

    jello Not Expert★NormL®

    Great post!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!:bow:
  4. The Penny Lady®

    The Penny Lady® Coin Dealer

    Though the market has softened recently for MPL's, as it has for many other coins, for comparison purposes, here's the latest PCGS listed prices for MPL's (which are mostly based on auction prices realized and is updated about weekly):

    Date Color PF64 PF65 PF66
    [FONT=&quot]1909 BN 800 1,250 2,000
    [FONT=&quot] RB 1,000 2,400 3,500
    [/FONT][FONT=&quot]RD 1,625 3,250 6,500
    1909 VDB BN 30,000 35,000 40,000
    [/FONT][FONT=&quot]RB 37,500 50,000 85,000
    [/FONT][FONT=&quot]RD 45,000 60,000 100,000
    1910 BN 700 900 1,650
    [/FONT][FONT=&quot]RB 1,250 1,200 3,250
    [/FONT][FONT=&quot]RD 1,500 2,650 8,000
    [FONT=&quot] 1911 BN 750 1,850 2,500[/FONT]
    [FONT=&quot] RB 1,000 2,500 4,500
    [FONT=&quot]RD 1,750 6,500 12,500
    [FONT=&quot] 1912 BN 750 1,250 1,850
    [/FONT][FONT=&quot]RB 2,500 3,250 7,500
    [/FONT][FONT=&quot]RD 3,750 5,500 40,000[/FONT]
    1913 BN 600 700 1,250
    [FONT=&quot]RB 875 1,650 2,500
    [/FONT][FONT=&quot] RD 1,350 2,850 6,000
    [FONT=&quot] 1914 BN 625 1,200 2,000
    [/FONT][FONT=&quot]RB 1,500 2,150 3,250
    [/FONT][FONT=&quot]RD 2,250 3,000 6,500
    [FONT=&quot] 1915 BN 1,850 2,000 5,000
    [/FONT][FONT=&quot]RB 2,000 4,250 10,500
    [/FONT][FONT=&quot]RD 2,350 8,000 17,500
    [FONT=&quot] 1916 BN 3,000 4,500 7,500
    [/FONT][FONT=&quot]RB 5,000 7,500 11,000
    [/FONT][FONT=&quot]RD 8,000 13,000 25,000

    You will note that I only listed prices for PF64 grades and higher. Personally, and what I recommend to all my customers interested in proofs, is that if you are want to invest in proofs, try to buy PF64 and higher because PF63 and lower will have more bold "issues" like spots, hairlines, blotches, scratches, etc. Proofs were originally minted as the most pristine, perfect coin. So for me, if I were interested in a proof coin, I would especially want a proof with the most eye appeal and least distractions (especially at these prices) - why would you settle for a proof that has problems?

    Also, keep in mind that any of these MPL's with pretty toning, especially the brown ones, will garner even higher prices. In my experience, a pretty toned brown coin will get a similar or even higher price than a red brown coin with regular red brown color. And a red brown coin with beautiful or colorful toning will sometimes get a similar price for a regular red coin, and sometimes even higher.

    As I stated in an earlier thread on MPL's and pricing, eye appeal is EVERYTHING with these and other proof coins. If there is superior eye appeal, beautiful colorful toning, satiny luster, etc., sometimes the sky can be the limit as each of these toned proofs are unique and no two are alike - especially if there are two or more people bidding on these special beauties.
  5. eddiesworld65

    eddiesworld65 Junior Member


    Last week I purchased a BU 1916 penny for $25 at a local flea market from a dealer. It had $110 marked on it crossed out and $35 in red. I looked at it and went on my way. About 2 hours later I went back and chatted with the dealer (seen him around for years and bought from him a quite a bit years ago) & looked at the coin again. He made a joke about me starting a early BU set and wished me luck and said he could do $25 for it. He also made the commented that the comet cleaner he used on it worked (yeah, he's a part time comedian but in a good way; he really is good guy).
    I looked at it a couple of days later and thought it looked kind of funny, matte like but not cleaned in any way. Also, Lincolns beard has more detail in it than any other Lincoln I own so I went to goggle to find a pic of it which led me to this post and to my UTTER SHOCK mine is a matte proof!!!! This is by far my best coin find ever!!
    The moral to the story is there really are stray rare coins out there, just keep your eyes open and take a chance, it may pay off!
    FYI: The coin is not for sale, it is even cooler than my 09s vdb and 22 no D combined & will be slabbed. I will post a pic when I can get a good enough one.
  6. financeman

    financeman Lincoln Cent Connoisseur

    I just wanted to say once again, Thany you for the wonderful information. I find this post so informative as I have been reading books and books about the Lincoln series since it is my primary interest in collecting.
    Every time you post a thread like this I make sure and try to find and read it because I learn something new from it every time. Maybe one day (after some more learning as you said earlier) I will be able to get a few coins from you and maybe meet you at a show.
    Thanks again for all the wonderful info. I appreciate you taking the time to post this as I am sure numerous other people do as well. I hope that one day I will be the high calleber "penny" collector that you are and have half the knowledge you do. If I do, I will feel like I have succeeded in my collection. Thanks
  7. Victor

    Victor Coin Collector

    Recently a raw MPL came into my ownership. At least I think it's a matte proof.
    The first thing I did was send it out for grading. Now I anxiously await the return.
    Meanwhile this thread makes for good reading. Thanks.
  8. Leadfoot

    Leadfoot there is no spoon

    MPLs are great coins, and sorry to nitpick, but the satin proofs of 1936 are both more rare and more unique. ;)
  9. Leadfoot

    Leadfoot there is no spoon

    p.s. great post Charmy! :)
  10. Duke Kavanaugh

    Duke Kavanaugh The Big Coin Hunter

    Charmy thanks for the great info!!

    Leadfoot care to start a post about those 36's?
  11. mikenoodle

    mikenoodle The Village Idiot

    thanks for a ton of great info Charmy!
  12. majorbigtime

    majorbigtime New Member

    I have a few of 'em. They can be confused with sharp strikes.

    The 09-16 versions are markedly different from the 36 matt.
  13. The Penny Lady®

    The Penny Lady® Coin Dealer

    In case people hadn't noticed, I originally created this thread almost a year ago but am glad people still find the information useful.

    Thank you for all your kind support, I sincerely appreciate it and am grateful that there are some who do enjoy my posts. I still love MPL's and find them very intriguing, especially in light of just recently finding out that a 1909 MPL I recently acquired turned out to have a previously unknown die variety. See this thread: http://www.cointalk.com/t103589/

    Even though I credit Brian Wagner with actually determining my MPL had an unknown die variety and Kevin Flynn with officially authenticating it, I truly am honored to have played a part in this new discovery, and to be the owner of the actual "discovery piece" which will also be the "plate coin" in Kevin Flynn's MPL book whenever it is updated.

    Any way, I believe MPL's are still a very unique and rare, and underappreciated coin, and will always be a big fan of these beautiful pieces!
  14. eddiesworld65

    eddiesworld65 Junior Member

    Give credit where due.....

  15. The Penny Lady®

    The Penny Lady® Coin Dealer

    Eddie, you probably know that many 1916 business strike pennies were extremely well struck with excellent detail, so it is very easy to confuse the business strike with an MPL Be sure to look at the rims and compare them to a regular Lincoln cent). There are a couple great books on Matte Proof Lincolns, and probably the best one written to date was recently published by Kevin Flynn (http://www.wizardcoinsupply.com/lincoln-cent-matte-proofs.html). This one contains some great photos with detailed diagnostics to look for in determining the differences between MPL's and well struck business strikes.

    Good luck with your 1916 - be sure to let us know the outcome!
  16. eddiesworld65

    eddiesworld65 Junior Member

    I looked the coin over again, fat/flat rims compaired to a regular teens unc penny, and the beard detail is alot more detailed on my matte than the regular. I showed it to a old (in his 70's) dealer who had seen them years ago and gave it a thumbs up! He was shocked at the prices, he said in the 60's and 70's you couldn't give them away, had a few nice ones for $30-40 and they sat for years! He saved alot of low mintage (key) lincolns and indians but not the mattes, didn't think they would ever do anything! Wish he would have, my collection would be that much better!!!
  17. EyeEatWheaties

    EyeEatWheaties Cent Hoarder

    what if 40% of the rim is square, yet the strike is crisp in the adjacent area? wishful thinking on my part, i guess, because in spite of the really grainy appearance none of the other attributes/markers are apparent.
  18. EyeEatWheaties

    EyeEatWheaties Cent Hoarder

    It was and continues to be very very helpful.. thank you!
  19. TexasJarhead

    TexasJarhead Junior Member

    This is why I love Coin Talk. Very interesting information. Thanks for sharing.
  20. EyeEatWheaties

    EyeEatWheaties Cent Hoarder

    oh boy.... snagged this one earlier tonight. beat to death ugly, I know... I won't know until it is hand. What I can't understand is why there weren't any spirited bids on it at all...


    andddddddd.................... wait for it............................!

  21. Ripley

    Ripley Senior Member

    Sometimes, things just go under the radar and you get lucky. Coingrads !!!
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