From hard to buy gold errors to errors on popular collector coins, this year I had the privilege of seeing many of them at the American Numismatic Association World’s Fair Of Money Aug. 16-20 in suburban Chicago. For a greater part of each day, I spent considerable time sitting behind the Combined Organizations Of Numismatic Error Collectors of America’s club table explaining to folks what kind of errors and varieties they brought for review. I also scrounged the floor to find a few neat errors and varieties to shoot photographs of.
While everything I shot cannot be shown here, there were a few coins that stood out as pretty neat to me that I thought I’d share with readers. Those who read my articles know that I love clashed dies so it shouldn’t be any surprise that I found a few to shoot.
While clashes are certainly no stranger to Kennedy half dollars, I had never seen one on a 1970-D half, which most collectors know (or should know) were only released to collectors in official government mint sets. For this reason, errors for this date are rare. Dennis Mize of Arizona had a couple at his table that boasted very strong clash marks on both the obverse and reverse. The strongest area shows portions of the eagle’s feathers, stars and rays from the reverse impressed into the obverse in front of Kennedy’s profile.
Seeing my interest in this coin, Mize pulled another clashed die variety from his case and suggested I might like to look at it too. Hearing him mention that it was on a 3-cent piece I at first thought “ho hum, who cares, show me a 3-cent piece without a clash” but this one surprised me. Not only did it turn out to be very strong on the reverse, but the dies were also rotationally misaligned enough during the clash for the lines in the shield on the obverse to be impressed into the reverse in a diagonal position in relation to the reverse design. Clashed dies occur when a planchet fails to be fed into the coining area during a press cycle and they clash or smash into each other, impressing portions of each die’s design into the opposing die.
Robert Lawson of Ohio went cherry-picking on the bourse and in short order found a brilliant uncirculated 1956-D Washington quarter with a D over Inverted D Repunched Mintmark. This one is listed by CONECA as RPM-001 and in the Cherrypickers’ Guide To Rare Die Varieties by Bill Fivaz and J.T. Stanton as FS-501.
James Kropp of Illinois brought a 1941-D dime that sported a doubled die obverse and reverse graded by Numismatic Guaranty Corp. as MS-66 with full split bands. It was a beauty that I just had to shoot. The doubling shows best on the date, designer’s initials and IN GOD WE TRUST. It is listed in the CPG as FS-101.
Yours truly got a chance to go out and do a bit of cherry-picking (something I rarely have time to do) and found a nice Professional Coin Grading Service graded Proof-67 1964 Kennedy half dollar that was attributed as being the Accented Hair variety, but also bore a beautiful tripled die obverse that CONECA has listed as DDO-022, but was not noted on the holder. The strongest doubling on this coin is on IN GOD WE TRUST while tripling is evident on the foot of the “4” of date. This one just missed making it into the next edition of the CPG, but will go into the one to follow.
Very few folks brought any striking or planchet errors to the table, but one highlight that I got to shoot was a 1915-S Panama-Pacific gold dollar that was struck through some kind of elongated scrap on the reverse. One might argue that this is not a major error, but it is a gold commemorative coin and it might be the only error that got out for the type.
Ken Potter is the official attributer and lister of world doubled dies for the Combined Organizations of Numismatic Error Collectors of America and for the National Collector’s Association of Die Doubling. He privately lists U.S. doubled dies and other collectible variety types on both U.S. and world coins in the Variety Coin Register. For more information on either of these clubs, or to learn how to get a variety listed in the Variety Coin Register, send a self-addressed, stamped business-size envelope and 61 cents to Ken Potter, P.O. Box 760232, Lathrup Village, MI 48076 0232. Contact Ken via email at Kpotter256@aol.com, or visit his Educational Image Gallery located at: www.koinpro.com.