The first proof collection to appear on this site is notable for many reasons. Listed as "Newmismatist" in the PCGS Set Registry, it's the finest all time registered set using their new weighting system. It contains an incredible number of cameo examples, most among the finest known. But at the same time it was assembled with an eye for quality first that often chose beautiful RBs over their more highly weighted RD counterparts. A look into this collector's background makes you further appreciate the balance of his collection, but we'll start with the grading stats:

1) The average weighted grade of the set is an astounding 67.33. 
2) 14 coins are Cameo, 2 of which are Deep Cameo.
3) It includes the only bronze proof currently graded Deep Cameo by PCGS (1864br PR64).
4) 7 coins are Finest Known, 3 others have none graded higher, 6 others have only one graded       higher.
5) All this despite incuding 15 RB examples.

    The owner of this set established his interest in coins at the early age of four. It started with an uncirculated 1931-S Lincoln, and by the time he was 10 he had almost completed an album of MS Lincoln cents. At this young age he had already learned about dishonest dealers, having bought several whizzed coins at shows -- "I learned all about Caveat emptor before I was 10!". His interest spread to other series in his teenage years, but was put on hold until the early portion of his adult life was established. Once he finished his education, married, started a family and became gainfully employed, his coin collecting rekindled in the early 1970s.
    When certification began he didn't like it at all -- "You can't put slabbed coins in an album". Also, this seemed to suddenly price the coins he prefered out of the market. His attention turned to Ancients, from which he learned more about history than he had in school. But he still attended shows and "once a penny collector, always a penny collector", so he slowly started buying slabs he liked, irrespective of the label. Mistakes were made, but eventually he learned the nuances of this "new" grading system. He also observed that the grading services were very inconsistent, particularly with copper, and he started buying what he felt was quality for the assigned grade. This centered on RB coins due to their value, but along the way many spectacular red examples found their way into his hands.
    His entry into the PCGS Registry was due mostly to curiosity, or as he puts it, he "backed in". He had accumulated so many nice proofs over the years that he decided to list them in the Registry for the fun of it. To his surprise he had one of the top sets and realized, with a little "tweeking and crossing", his rank would climb. His first group of NGC crosses were 90% successful, testimony to his well developed eye. Over the past year he purchased several coins from high grade collections that became available, pushing his set to #1. With his interests now moving in other directions, his proof Indian cents will be sold in the upcoming 2003 F.U.N Signature Sale by Heritage Numismatic Auctions.
    His collecting philosophy in his own words: "1) buy the nicest coin you can afford, 2) buy the coin, not the plastic, and 3) go after the key dates FIRST, because once you've got those dates the rest is easy -- it just requires patience in waiting for the right coin."
1859      PCGS PR66                   18/1
1860      PCGS PR66CAM            1/0       large obverse
1861      PCGS PR65                   10/1
1862      PCGS PR65CAM            7/9       large obverse
1863      PCGS PR66CAM            2/0       large obverse
1864      PCGS PR65DCAM          1/1
1864      PCGS PR64DCAM          1/0       large obverse
1865      PCGS PR66RB               2/0
1866      PCGS PR65CAM            1/2
1867      PCGS PR64RD               28/14
1868      PCGS PR65RB               32/4
1869      PCGS PR66CAM            2/0
1870      PCGS PR64RD               24/24
1871      PCGS PR66CAM            1/0       large obverse   large reverse
1872      PCGS PR66RB               3/0
1873      PCGS PR65RD               24/3
1874      PCGS PR65CAM            2/1       large obverse
1875      PCGS PR65RD               11/2
1876      PCGS PR65CAM            1/0
1877      PCGS PR64CAM            2/1       large obverse
1878      PCGS PR66CAM            1/0       large obverse
1879      PCGS PR66RD               30/9
1880      PCGS PR65CAM            1/0       large obverse
1881      PCGS PR65RD               51/30
1882      PCGS PR65RD               14/14
1883      PCGS PR64RD               43/21
1884      PCGS PR67RB               14/1
1885      PCGS PR66RB               28/13
1886      PCGS PR65RD               18/10
1887      PCGS PR66RB               5/0
1888      PCGS PR66CAM            1/0       large obverse
1889      PCGS PR66RD               8/0
1890      PCGS PR65RB               16/1
1891      PCGS PR65RD               16/4
1892      PCGS PR66RD               12/2
1893      PCGS PR65RD               25/7     large obverse
1894      PCGS PR65RD               24/9
1895      PCGS PR65RD               27/17
1896      PCGS PR66RB               4/0
1897      PCGS PR65RB               33/12
1898      PCGS PR66RB               7/2
1899      PCGS PR65RD               38/31
1900      PCGS PR65RB               35/5     large obverse   large reverse
1901      PCGS PR66RB               12/3     large obverse
1902      PCGS PR66RB               10/0
1903      PCGS PR66RD               25/8     large obverse   large reverse
1904      PCGS PR66RD               5/1       large obverse   large reverse
1905      PCGS PR66RD               13/2     large obverse   large reverse
1906      PCGS PR66RD               16/4
1907      PCGS PR65RD               14/15    large obverse
1908      PCGS PR66RB                7/0      large obverse   large reverse
1909      PCGS PR66RB               11/0
All images courtesy of Heritage Numismatic Auctions, Inc.
large reverse