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Valdivia, Chile, 8 reales, 1822, ex-Millennia, KM Plate Coin, encapsulated NGC XF 40, extremely rare

Currency:USD Category:Coins & Paper Money / World Coins - World (A-G) Start Price:4,500.00 USD Estimated At:5,000.00 - 7,500.00 USD
Valdivia, Chile, 8 reales, 1822, ex-Millennia, KM Plate Coin, encapsulated NGC XF 40, extremely rare
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This item SOLD at 2012 Oct 26 @ 20:00UTC-4 : AST/EDT
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Valdivia, Chile, 8 reales, 1822, ex-Millennia, KM Plate Coin, encapsulated NGC XF 40, extremely rare, finest (and only) known specimen graded by NGC. KM-3 (this coin). The formerly prosperous colonial city of Valdivia was heavily looted during the struggle for Chilean independence in 1820. Without enough coinage for daily commerce and payment to the local garrison, the governor was forced to collect silverware and any other silver items available from merchants and other residents in order to make coins. Some 4000 ounces of silver were amassed and sent to a new facility on an estate known as Chunimpa, under the supervision of its owner, Don Antonio Adriazola. The coins thus produced were known as “chunimpanas.
Striking took place in 1822, in the denominations of 1, 2 and 8 reales, with a simple design consisting of the denomination, VA and date on the obverse and a column and three stars on the reverse. Because these “emergency” coins were unofficial and not even proper weight for their values, they were all called in by the Chilean government and melted. For that reason, surviving specimens are very rare, and are plagued by counterfeit copies. The fact that the present coin is certified authentic (the only one graded by NGC) is therefore quite significant.
Because the design of this coin is so sparse, with much more open field than actual details, it must have been very difficult for NGC to accurately grade it, especially in the absence of others for comparison; most likely they erred on the side of caution with the XF 40 grade. There is some faint luster, after all, and all the details are full and bold against deep toning all over (minor dark spots at rims, which are slightly off-center), but then again the fields do have numerous small marks that would be lacking in a true AU or Mint State piece. The main point is that this coin is genuine and problem-free, and well worth a premium for the story behind its manufacture. Pedigreed to the Millennia collection, as stated in the slab.