Tuscaloosa Coin Hoard

Diver_Down

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Dec 13, 2008
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St. Augustine, FL
Recently, I purchased a few coins from a reputable civil war relic dealer. The coins were part of a hoard that was unearthed in Tuscaloosa, AL. The current owner of the land was digging post holes for a new fence when he unearthed a buried chest of coins. His property is along an old stage-coach line on the approach to the east of town. The coins that were unearthed indicate the burial occurred at the time of of the civil war. A reputable coin dealer in Alabama was contacted to professionally clean the coins. In return for his services, some of the coins would be available for him to purchase with the owner retaining the rest. The coins are accompanied by a notarized letter attesting to their authenticity.

Has anyone heard of local news with regards to this hoard? The coins were unearthed in the early 90's.
 

saw1

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Apr 13, 2005
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Yes, I have! An article about this find was published in The Tuscaloosa News shortly after it was found. I do not have the date but I would estimate maybe 10 years or so ago.

The Tuscaloosa News Librarian is on sick leave now but should be back at work in late March, if this helps any. Perhaps she can locate the article for you.
 
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Diver_Down

Diver_Down

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I would love to read more on this find. I'll try and make some scans of the coins that I purchased from this hoard. Great stuff.
 

Bull Gator

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The 276 coins of what NGC (a third-party coin authentication and grading service) labeled as the Tuscaloosa Collection were found in April 1998 in the Tuscaloosa suburb of Northport, Alabama, by former University of Alabama defensive football player (lettered 1988-91) Steve Webb. An article appeared in the March 14, 1999 issue of The Tuscaloosa News on pages 1A & 8A.
https://news.google.com/newspapers?...AIBAJ&sjid=VqYEAAAAIBAJ&pg=2089,1753564&hl=en
https://news.google.com/newspapers?id=78kdAAAAIBAJ&sjid=VqYEAAAAIBAJ&pg=4148,1782159

An article also appeared in Coin World, April 5, 1999, on pages 3 & 8, although it was completely derived from the newspaper article and has no further information.

All of the coins were labeled by NGC as "IMPROPERLY CLEANED" without an official grade but with a notation such as "VF DETAILS" to indicate the grade that the coin might possibly receive had its numismatic value not been damaged by cleaning. The example I have seen exhibits parallel scratches under magnification, indicative of abrasive cleaning.
 
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Diver_Down

Diver_Down

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DSCF9828.JPG DSCF9829.JPG

DSCF9830.JPG DSCF9831.JPG

DSCF9832.JPG DSCF9833.JPG

DSCF9834.JPG DSCF9835.JPG

DSCF9836.JPG
 
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Diver_Down

Diver_Down

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Diver_Down

Diver_Down

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The last round of hoard coins that I submitted for consignment last year were very well received by the collector community. I held back the oldest of the hoard and IMO the best specimen that will come to market. There are no more quantities that exist of the hoard. They are all individually owned in personal collections. The oldest and best - 1831 Bust Half Dollar - will find a new owner this week.
 
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Diver_Down

Diver_Down

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Rule # 1, never clean coins as above, the value is very little because of it. Sorry.


In general. When dealing with salvage, the coins must be conserved whether they are found on a shipwreck or buried in an iron chest. These hoard coins were covered in environmental rust as the outer container deteriorated. They would have been worthless left as they were found. I conserve shipwreck salvaged coins and average $7-$10K each treasure auction. I think I know what I'm doing.
 

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