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Charles Ira Bushnell


Writer/collector (b. 7/28/1826 d. 9/17/1880)

                Born and died in New York City. Studied law but did not practice. Uncle of Samuel Hudson and Henry Chapman. Married with children.

                After his death his son offered the coin collection for sale at $10,000. Lorin Parmelee bought it for about $8,000. After skimming the collection, the remainders were consigned to the Chapmans for auction June 20-24, 1882. Five hundred copies of the catalog were printed including 100 with plates. Lorin Parmelee bought back many individual pieces at the sale. The sale realized $13,900.47. There was a strong representation of colonial coins. A Lord Baltimore Penny realized $550 and the Brasher Doubloon realized $505. Among the pattern coins, the Eagle-on-Globe pattern realized $300, a Birch Cent realized $290 and a silver center cent realized $120. Perhaps the highlight of the sale was the "Good Samaritan Shilling" that realized $650. Some numsimatists questioned the authenticity at the time.

                The piece is an interesting example of changing collector tastes. In 1882 the "Good Samaritan Shilling" was perceived as worth more than the Brasher Doubloon.

                Bushnell published articles in the New York Sunday Dispatch. Author of An Arrangement of Tradesmen's Cards, Political Tokens in 1858, Also Election Medals Current in the United States in 1858.

                A medal for Bushnell was made by Augustus B. Sage. The two had conducted a debate in the New York Dispatch by correspondence in 1857.

bio: ApCAB       obit: AJN 15 1881 page 72

Source credit: Pete Smith, American Numismatic Biographies


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