“All of us here at Decatur Coin and Jewelry truly do offer a unique window into the retail coin collecting and jewelry space on the internet. In my world, I lead a group of (9) people doing what we each love doing, while serving others at the same time. It’s a pretty incredible way to ‘live’ this journey we have. Each of have a calling to ‘serve’ through our talents and the love of this industry, and through that process we give and receive a lot of joy.

“As true numismatists/coin collectors who operate a coin and jewelry shop, we appreciate these beautiful pieces of art and ‘live’ in that enjoyment every day. What we are doing on our website www.decaturcoinandjewelry.com, eBay and Proxibid is unlike what many are doing in the coin collecting arena. Every day of our lives, we pay it forward in the pursuit of attracting and growing ethical behavior through the fair and equitable exchange of relative value.

“In the shop we buy everything in every grade; however, when we are on the road at the numerous major coin shows, we buy only the top 2% of the grade for the coins we look at. They don’t have to be high priced–just high eye appeal for the grade. We are very strong buyers on coins that are well above average for the grade and frequently pay multiples of the current price guides.

“We will never be the cheapest or lowest price out there because we simply never buy anything ‘average’ at the shows we attend. My philosophy is to ‘buy our eyes’ as I have for over 40 years, and you will be rewarded with coins that few people will ever get to see–let alone get a chance to buy.”

Bennie Strumpher & the Decatur Coin and Jewelry Team

Decatur Coin and Jewelry
104 North Main
Decatur, IL 62523
Main: 217-423-0041


“People come into our shop with coins that have been slabbed by a self slabber and the buyer paid huge money for them. The looks on their faces when I tell them the truth about there coins is very disheartening, and some get very upset and angry.

“Just about six weeks ago a gentleman came in with three coins. A 1878 S & 1884 O Morgan dollar in [bottom-tier slabs]. All three graded as MS67. The holders look great with certification numbers a barcode and the whole works. He told me that he paid in total over $8,000 for the coins and had a receipt for them from about 2 years ago from what appeared to be a legitimate coin company. He wanted to know for sure so he asked us to send them to NGC for him.

“So with him still present, we photographed the coins, filled out the grading service papers and sent them off. We received them back last week. The 1878 S graded ‘Unc Details, Improperly cleaned,’ 1884 O graded “MS 63,” and the 1885 graded “MS64. So in all there might be $200 worth of coins a total loss of around $7,800 + the grading fees.

“This is one of the largest losses I have seen, but I am sure it happens all the time. If it looks too good to be true it probably is and if it isn’t NGC, PCGS, ANACS, ICG make sure [the holdering company or seller] has a good return policy.”

Email: libertyshops@hotmail.com
Web: http://www.libertytrading.net

Sean Cook, Numismatist and Auctioneer
Liberty Shops Auction Service
Vandalia, Illinois
618-283-9244 or 618-283-9156

Upon winning a coin in a Liberty Shops auction, we received this proactive message below.

“We accept returns on any un-certified numismatic item. We understand grading is subjective. We will always do our best to describe an item as well as take very clear photos of the item. Certified coins and bullion related item returns will have to be approved for return by myself, I will decide those on a case by case circumstance. (We consider coins to be certified if the are certified by NGC, PCGS, ICG, or ANACS. Any other company we consider an un-certified numismatic coin.) If you have a problem with an item or items please give us a call. We will do whatever we can to make your experience with Liberty Shops Auctions a great one. We understand a business isn’t made by new customers it is made by the same customers coming back again and again.”

Sean Cook
Liberty Shops Auction Service
Vandalia, Illinois
618-283-9244 or 618-283-9156

Upon being asked about a lot in his auction, Dave Weaver of Weaver Signature Coin and Currency Auction provides a detailed description for us.

“On close inspection we think it is possible the cheek has had some type of alteration. It’s an attractive coin overall. I guess we would recommend exactly what you do–close inspection and questions when needed, and then consider them raw.”

Weaver’s Signature Coin & Currency Auctions LLC
33rd & Pacific (Fairview Golf Course Banquet Room)
St Joseph, MO 64507

“We decided to charge 10% buyer’s premium a year or so ago because we have streamlined our processes. In addition, we use BP to offset additional costs to our clients (sellers) and not as a profit center as some other companies do.

“Even at 10%, a buyer will divide the amount by 1.1 to come up with the maximum price they will pay for an item. 10% is EASY compared to the 15-18% and up that some companies charge. Now granted, everyone has their rationale for how and what they charge, so I am not chastising anyone with these comments. We choose to go our own way.”

Darron Meares, MBA, CAI, MPPA, BAS
COO – Meares Auction Group
Meares Auction Group
315 Eastview Road
Pelzer, SC 29669


Main: 864-947-2000
Alternate: 800-689-5654
Fax: 864-947-1717

“In these more difficult economic times we are going to offer all buyers the chance to purchase key or semi-key date coins at an affordable price. The grades won’t be as high but neither will the cost. We are not lowering our standards, just offering an alternative venue.”

Internet Buyer’s Premium: 10%, 5% $20 gold and one-ounce bullion
Shipping: USPS flat fee plus $5 handling
No maximum-bid viewing, no consignor/auctioneer bidding


Cheryl Weaver on “Budget Collector Auctions”
Weaver Signature Coin and Currency Auctions
Email: weavercoin@yahoo.com

“It’s our core philosophy as a company that whatever short term gains might be made in mis-representing a lot or short changing a buyer, it always works out better in the long run to be honest and dependable. Our terms are aggressive, we are straight forward in our lot descriptions, and we ship well-protected packages quickly (generally the next business day following the auction). Full money back guarantee if the buyer finds a lot is different than described.”

Internet Buyer’s Premium: 10%
Shipping: $5.00 flat fee for coin auctions
No maximum-bid viewing, no consignor/auctioneer bidding


C. Scott Lovejoy
Creative Director
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