by | Feb 4, 2024 | History, Numismatics

SS Andrea Doria  PCGS Grade B 1935 E Dollar

Scarsdale Coin recently was able to acquire these rare historic items, if you dont know the story sit back and enjoy reading below…

For a country attempting to rebuild its shattered economy and reputation after World War IIAndrea Doria was an icon of Italian national pride. Of all Italy’s ships at the time, Andrea Doria was the largest, fastest and supposedly safest. Launched on 16 June 1951, the ship began her maiden voyage on 14 January 1953.

On 25 July 1956, while Andrea Doria was approaching the coast of Nantucket, Massachusetts in heavy fog, bound for New York City, the eastbound SS Stockholm collided with her in one of history’s most infamous maritime disasters. 

Struck in the side, the top-heavy Andrea Doria immediately started to list severely to starboard, which left half of her lifeboats unusable. The consequent shortage of lifeboats could have resulted in significant loss of life, but the ship stayed afloat for over 11 hours after the collision.  The calm, appropriate behavior of the crew, together with improvements in communications, and the rapid response of other ships, averted a disaster similar in scale to that of Titanic in 1912.

On August 27, 1981, during Hurricane Dennis, marine explorer and department store heir, Peter Gimble, and his team recovered the Banco di Roma (Bank of Rome) safe that had been submerged in the shipwreck 250 feet under the Atlantic Ocean for 25 years. It was believed the 650-pound safe contained First Class passenger’s jewelry and other valuables; however, those items apparently were removed by their owners prior to evacuation or earlier on the evening of the collision in preparation for the ship’s docking in New York the next day.

With thousands of U.S. and Italian notes from the historic shipwreck lining the wall behind him, PCGS Currency President Jason Bradford holds one of the $1 Silver Certificate notes recovered from the Andrea Doria.

When the safe finally was opened during a live television broadcast three years later on August 3, 1984, the sunken treasure contents were revealed: stacks of U.S. $1 Silver Certificates and Italian bank notes in 50, 100 and 1,000 Lire denominations. Gimble and his wife, actress and diver Elga Andersen, subsequently preserved and sold some of the notes in specially-made Lucite holders.

Jonathan Lerner Revised

Jon Lerner

Jon Lerner, Scarsdale Coin president, is a recognized expert in the numismatist field. Jon has spent over 30 years collecting and evaluating coins. He is often sought out by fellow coin collectors for his advice and knowledge of rare coins.


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Scarsdale Coin

Jon Lerner, a renowned figure in numismatics, discovered his passion for rare coins in his Scarsdale, New York upbringing. With a keen eye for quality, he founded Scarsdale Coin in 1985, quickly establishing it as a premier destination for collectors. Beyond dealing, Jon is a respected speaker and prolific writer, sharing his expertise with enthusiasts worldwide. His commitment to integrity and professionalism has earned him admiration throughout the numismatic community. Jon remains dedicated to enriching collectors' experiences and preserving the legacy of rare coins for future generations.