Gables Coin and Stamp – A Drachma for Your Thoughts

At Gables Coin & Stamp, you can invest in solid currency while taking home a piece of history.

Pat Olive’s interest in coins began at a young age. His father introduced him to foreign currency, giving him pieces he’d come across in daily life. Pat remembers riding his bike to the coin shop on Miracle Mile, excited to add to his collection of global coins from a large bucket, which all the children who visited the shop were able to pick from. 

Today, as the owner of Gables Coin & Stamp, Pat continues this tradition he loved, buying coins from around the world by the pound and allowing kid shoppers to pick their favorites from the bucket, just as he did. He and his wife Nancy have been doing that since 2013 when they purchased the store from its former owner – who had been on The Mile since 1967. 

Owners of Gables Coin & Stamp, Pat and Nancy Olive.
Owners of Gables Coin & Stamp, Nancy and Pat Olive.

Most of Gables Coin’s inventory comes from people selling family heirlooms. Shoppers, on the other hand – besides the joy of owning a piece of history
– are looking for a way to secure their currency, preferring to have it in solid form as a hedge against inflation. “Sometimes, we have coin laundry owners come in after fishing through their change and finding silver,” says Nancy. “They come here because the silver itself is worth more than the monetary value of the coin.” 

Pat’s favorite coins in the shop are the Liberty Half Dollar from 1930, worth $225, and the Standing Liberty Quarter from 1919, worth $495. He loves the detailed artwork on the coin, which inspired the depiction on the modern-day Silver Eagle. Silver Eagles are popular coins in the shop since they are more affordable, around $38 each. The most expensive coins are the gold bullions. The Gold Canadian Maple Leaf, for example, is worth $2,045. There’s also the Gold American Eagle and the Gold South African Kruger- rand. All three hold their value anywhere in the world. 

Coin and Stamp
A silver liberty half dollar (walking liberty) which is popular with many collectors

Coin values, however, are not set in stone. They fluctuate with market changes tracked on the Kitco Gold Index, which the Olives display on a monitor, adjusting their prices accordingly. The only values not determined by the KGI are those of ancient coins. The most fascinating coins in the shop, the ancients can date back to 300 BC. Examples include the Augustus coin from 18 BC ($1,450), a Gordon III coin from between 244 and 238 BC ($195), and a Pontus coin from between 120 to 63 BC ($120). “You never know who could have handled these coins,” Pat says. “Christ himself could have handled one.” Ancient coin values vary according to who is pictured; the history behind them is priceless. 

With coin shops dwindling and online shopping increasing, the Olives say websites like Etsy are posing their biggest challenge since they sell coins for ridiculous rates. “I got a phone call from someone asking me to confirm the value of a coin he found on Etsy that he wanted to give to his grandson. It was apparently worth $6,800 online,” Pat says. “I told him, ‘I’ll sell it to you for 25 cents because that’s all it’s worth!” So, before you buy an absurdly overpriced penny on the internet, visit Gables Coin & Stamp. 

Gables Coin & Stamp

82 Miracle Mile
(305) 445-7561