How Edward VIII's abdication helped Heritage's $25m coin sales success

We've already reported on the $23,077,321 netted by Heritage for its comic book sales in 2010, and that wasn't the only collectibles niche to break records at the Dallas, US, auction house.

World & Ancient coins also continued its stellar growth at Heritage's big money Signature auctions, Non-Floor- Session auctions and Internet-only auctions throughout 2010.

Controversial love: Edward VIII and
Wallis Simpson

According to new figures released by the auction house, its sales for coins jumped to $25,411,331 for the year.

This was led by sale of the legendary 1936 Canadian Dot Cent in early January, which made front page news across North America when it sold for $402,500.

The Dot Cent arose from a number of challenges presented to the Canadian Mint in early 1937, not least a severe shortage of Canadian one, 10, and 25 cent pieces.

This was compounded by the abdication of King Edward VIII shortly after claiming the throne in order to marry his sweetheart Wallis Simpson, the Duchess of Windsor.

The Mint was faced with a dilemma: its stock of uncirculated Edward VIII coins was now utterly invalid. So, to solve the problem, Canadian authorities were forced to carry on producing 1936 coins bearing the likeness of Edward's predecessor, the late George V.

In order the distinguish the new run from the old, a small dot was placed on the reverse of the one, 10 and 25 cent coins - today known as the 1936 Dot cents.

Not surprisingly, 1936 Dot Cents are both very rare (just three of a kind) and highly valued among collectors - making the January 2010 sale of the $402,500 Dot Cent a victory for the numismatic markets as well as for Heritage.


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