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Commems Collection: 1925 Stone Mountain - 1970 Dedication PNC

 
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 Posted 02/08/2021  3:08 pm Show Profile   Bookmark this topic Add commems to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
Those who have frequented the US Commemorative Coins forum here on CCF over the past few years will likely recall my fondness for supplemental items associated with my commemorative coins. One such supplemental category is philatelic-numismatic combination covers or PNCs.

Here, I'm presenting a PNC I picked up several years ago related to the 1925 Stone Mountain half dollar. It contains an example of the 1925 half dollar as well as the 1970 dedication medal and a pair of commemorative stamps - a four-cent Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson stamp from 1937 and a three-cent Final Reunion of United Confederate Veterans stamp from 1951. The PNC was issued to commemorate the Stone Mountain Memorial's dedication in 1970.




Work on the Stone Mountain Monument occurred in stages. Gutzon Borglum and his team began work in 1923. He was fired by the Stone Mountain Monumental Association in 1925 after several strong financial disagreements, after which Augustus Lukeman took up the carving work (after sandblasting Borglum's work away and developing a new design). Funding issues arose during Lukeman's time on the project and the lack of funds brought things to a halt in 1928.

For the most part, the mountain's memorial carving sat untouched until 1964 when sculptor Walter Hancock began the task of completing what Lukeman had started (though he revised and simplified Lukeman's original vision). Roy Faulkner, a welder without any art training, was hired to build a 400-foot tall elevator on the side of Stone Mountain to enable monument workers to get to/from work areas. While on site, he witnessed first hand the carvers' frustrations with their tools and recommended a thermo-jet torch fueled by a mixture of kerosene, oxygen and fire. The torch proved to be a good solution and was used going forward. Faulkner soon proposed to the Monument Association that he take over the carving and was soon hired to do so. He worked tirelessly for over eight years, and completed the carving of the memorial, with periodic consultation from Hancock, in May 1970; the memorial was officially dedicated on May 9, 1970. It took until March 1972, however, for all of the scaffolding and support structures to be removed from the site.

A commemorative medal was struck in 1970 to mark the completion and dedication of the monument. The medals were struck in bronze and silver, in 1.5" and 2.5" sizes; medals were struck by the US Mint (they carry a "P" mint mark) and Medallic Art Company (MACO).

The PNC shown is apparently one of just 100 to be produced, though I'm not sure of who issued it or if the quantity produced was really only 100. It would not surprise me to learn that Roy Faulkner had a hand in the cover as he created a museum dedicated to the memorial and so certainly had the entrepreneurial bent to create such a cover - but such is pure conjecture on my part.

I came across one being sold on eBay about a year and a half ago and had to laugh - it was listed as a "Buy It Now" for $10,000! IMO, about $9,800 too high! The seller believed the Stone Mountain half dollar contained in the cover was at least an MS-68 and therefore merited such a strong price. He/she noted that the NGC Price Guide listed the coin in MS-68 as having a value of $20,000. So, I guess the asking price of $10,000 was very reasonable considering it wasn't certified and the MS-68 grade couldn't be guaranteed! The cover is still available (as of 08-Feb-21), and its price has come down significantly! It can now be had for a mere $2,500! Still ridiculously high IMO.

That said, here's your chance to pick up the cover for your own collection! I wasn't interested when it was first listed and I'm not interested now. So, it's yours for the taking! I won't compete against you!

I believe the PNC makes for a nice "bookends" collectible with its coin that was issued in 1925 to help fund the carving of the monument and its medal - issued 45 years later! - to dedicate its completion. I like it!

And at an asking price of $200 or less, I would even consider buying it!


Collecting history one coin or medal at a time! (c) commems. All rights reserved.
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 Posted 02/08/2021  3:58 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Bump111 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Very interesting. I wonder where the Stone Mountain half dollars came from to put these together? Purchased piecemeal?
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 Posted 02/08/2021  4:22 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add commems to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
wonder where the Stone Mountain half dollars came from to put these together? Purchased piecemeal?

I believe they were purchased on the open market from a small number of dealers (possibly even just one or two). The coins were (and are) plentiful, so putting together 100 nice AU or slightly better coins wouldn't be much of a problem.


Collecting history one coin or medal at a time! (c) commems. All rights reserved.
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 Posted 02/08/2021  4:56 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add jbuck to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Fantastic!

I love the medal and this is a nice coin and medal pair, something I have taken a shine to lately. Of course, it is thanks to you.
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 Posted 02/08/2021  7:46 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add commems to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
I love the medal and this is a nice coin and medal pair, something I have taken a shine to lately. Of course, it is thanks to you.

Always happy to help a fellow collector "see the light!"


Collecting history one coin or medal at a time! (c) commems. All rights reserved.
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 Posted 02/08/2021  8:48 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add macmercury to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Interesting how coins, medal and stamps tied to a cover, you get both numismatic and philatelic history all in one package.

The thing is once you break these apart, these will be common items by itself, but putting it all together, it make it collectible again.

The Mercury Dimes Specialist!
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Edited by macmercury
02/08/2021 8:51 pm
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 Posted 02/09/2021  05:36 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add nickelsearcher to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Great thread commems - thanks as always for sharing from your vast collection of artifacts and knowledge.


Quote:
That said, here's your chance to pick up the cover for your own collection! I wasn't interested when it was first listed and I'm not interested now. So, it's yours for the taking! I won't compete against you!


I'll pass that same gracious offer on to other collectors. LOL
Take a look at my other hobby ... http://www.finewoodcrafter.com
Too many hobbies .... too much work .... not enough time.
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