American Numismatic Biographies author Pete Smith submitted this
article on colonial coin collector Donald G. Partrick. Thanks!
Readers of The E-Sylum may recall the mystery surrounding the death of Donald Partrick. No
obituary or death notice was published and there has been little biographical information
published about him. This is an attempt to correct that.
Donald Groves Partrick was born on January 6, 1926, the son of George F. (9/7/1889-7/1979)
and Violet W. Partrick (1896-10/20/1952). His father was listed as an insurance broker or
Partrick married Virginia Fickling (1/11/1924-1/2/2014), daughter of Walter J. Fickling of
Hempstead, on December 8, 1951. His wife was a niece of Danton Walker (1889-1960), a
syndicated New York City columnist. They were the parents of Douglas Partrick and Donald
Partrick attended Poly Preparatory Country Day School in Brooklyn and McBurnie Institute in
New York City. He graduated from Brown University at Providence, Rhode Island, in 1948.
While in college he was a member of Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity and a member of the Brown
Partrick was a building contractor servicing the post-war housing boom on Long Island. He was
president of Donstan Building Corp. with his partner Stanley L. Neisloss. The company was also
known as Donald Stanley Builders. In 1950 they were building 50 houses in the Syosset Hills
development. In 1954 they were developing 100 houses at Pinewood Hills in Huntington, Long
Island. In 1955 it was part of the 1500-unit Eastwood Village Colony in Centereach. In 1956
they were building 230 houses at St. James Estates.
They did several developments under the Heatherwood name. In 1958 they were working on the
400-unit Heatherwood at Huntington development. This included an 18-store shopping center. A
second 2500-unit development was at Heatherwood Village North in 1962. In 1962 they did a
507-unit development of Heatherwood in Central Islip. In 1965 it was 270 homes at
Heatherwood at Stony Brook.
In 1959, Partrick was vice president of the Long Island Home Builders Institute. He was the
designer of houses in his developments. Construction was speeded with the use of modular
They diversified to construct apartment buildings. In 1965 they began construction on 12
buildings with 192 apartment units at Heatherwood House on-the-Lake in Patchogue. In 1966
they planned to build another 800 private homes, 700 garden apartments and a shopping center.
In 1966 the company received an award for their efforts that included 7000 homes, 1000 garden
apartments and several shopping centers since 1950.
In 1990 Partrick was elected president of the Long Island Builders Institute. By that time, he was
one of the largest owners of rental property in his area.
His hobbies included hunting and fishing. He established a wildlife preserve in upstate New York.
At the same time, he had conflicts with preservationists over building projects on undeveloped
land on Long Island.
On November 12, 1974, Stack's offered at auction
The Donald Groves Collection of Colonial
Coins and an Additional Consignments of United States Coins. The catalog did not include a
biography of the consignor. It is now known that the coins were duplicates from Partrick.
Many coins have a pedigree that traces back to Donald Partrick. In some cases this was the name
he used in numismatics. Later sales were conducted under the name of Donald Groves Partrick.
Partrick joined the American Numismatic Society in 1969, became a fellow in 1987, joined the
board of trustees in 1990 and served as president from 1999 to 2007. He was an important donor
and driving force behind the move of ANS to a new building. He was a life member of the ANA
and received a Presidential Award in 1999.
In April of 1984, an anonymous donor contributed funds to the ANS to establish the Donald
Groves Fund to support research in early American numismatics. It was on December 2, 1984,
that I met Don Partrick as he made a presentation at the 1984 ANS Coinage of the Americas
In 2004, the American Numismatic Society issued a medal to commemorate their move to a new
building. The obverse had a bust of Donald G. Partrick but he is not named. In the background is
the Donald Groves Building, also not named. The gold medal was presented to Partrick on
October 23, 2004.
Partrick put together the finest cabinet of colonial coins ever assembled. On January 8, 2015,
Heritage conducted the first auction of the Donald G. Partrick Collection featuring a dozen 1792
patterns. Three additional sales were planned. Heritage offered a statement on June 10.
Auctions has placed on hold the 2nd , 3rd and 4th Donald G. Partrick Collection Auctions at the
request of Mr. Partrick's family.
Partrick died on April 9, 2020. An elaborate headstone marks the grave at Huntington Rural
Cemetery in Long Island, New York.
I found the listing of Heritage sales confusing. The Internet sales are not on NNP. This is my best
attempt to list them.
Colonials and 1792 patterns, Signature sale #3216, January 7-12, 2015.
Connecticut Coppers, Internet Sale #63160, Oct 2-Nov 1, 2020.
Hard Times and Merchant Tokens, Internet Sale #63161, Nov 7-Dec 6, 2020.
Brasher Doubloons, FUN Show Platinum Night
#1326, January 21, 2021.
New Jersey Coppers, Signature Sale #1330, Session 2, March 17-18, 2021.
Dollar, Platinum Night, #1329, April 22-23, 2021.
Civil War Merchant Tokens, Internet Sale #63163, Apr 30-May 30, 2021.
Additional Selections, Internet Sale #63165, May 30-Jun 27, 2021.
Virginia Partrick was a volunteer at Huntington Hospital for 30 years and put in more than
47,000 volunteer hours during that time. She also served on the board of trustees. Donald gave
the hospital 2.4 million dollars. Following his death, Douglas donated an additional million
dollars. Douglas remains president of Heatherwood Communities and owns the Heatherwood
Golf Course. Donald G. Partrick, Jr. also worked in the family business.
To read earlier E-Sylum articles, see:
HERITAGE TO OFFER DON PARTRICK COLONIAL COLLECTION
DONALD G. PARTRICK (1926-2020)
DONALD G. PARTRICK COLLECTION SALES ANNOUNCED
MORE ON DONALD GROVES PARTRICK
Wayne Homren, Editor
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