Dr. Jacob Hirsch, early 1950's
Dr. Jacob Hirsch/Ars Classica
The Hirsch family coin business started with Heinrich Hirsch (d. 1886). Part of his collection formed the opening inventory of his nephew Jacob Hirsch (1874-1955), who opened his own firm in 1897. Jacob soon became a leading dealer in Munich – before moving to Geneva in 1919, where he founded the firm “Ars Classica,” which conducted a number of important auctions with Naville & Cie., the firm of Lucien Naville. In 1931 Hirsch founded a business in New York, where he moved before WWII. Famous for his memory, and his ability to distinguish forgeries, he specialized in antiquities as well as coins, and had the chance to deal with numerous collectors worldwide such as Bestégui, Brand, the two Evans, Jameson, Newell and Consul Weber. After his death, several anonymous auctions of his inventory were held by Hess & Leu. Hirsch, under his own name, and the Ars Classica banner, sold many important collections, among them those of Imhoof-Blumer, Von Schennis, Lambros, both Evans, Sartiges, and Burrage.
Biblio: Hadrien J. Rambach, Provenance Glossary of Coins in the George W. LaBorde Collection (published over three auctions in NAC 91, 99 and 105) (description); John Spring, Ancient Coins Auction Catalogues 1880-1980, London 2009 (image)