Plain-edge Adams dollars now have been found matching the same error first reported with the introduction of the Washington dollar earlier this year. So far the quantity of the plain-edge Adams coin is lower than for Washington.
Collectors and profiteers in Michigan are still finding quantities of the new John Adams Presidential dollars with double edge inscriptions, or what most are calling ?double edge lettering.? Instead of finding them by the hundreds, as I originally reported in my June 19 Numismatic News lead story, at least a few folks with deep pockets and hours of time to spend searching banks on a daily basis began accumulating the errors by the thousands only to watch them quickly ebb to a trickle by the time of this writing.
All the hoopla is for coins that bear the inscription: ?2007 P - E PLURIBUS UNUM - IN GOD WE TRUST? impressed into the edge of the coins twice. Searchers are also now reporting pieces with the inscription missing completely in the same rolls as the double edge inscription errors. These are referred to under a variety of sometimes colorful names including, ?plain edge,? ?smooth edge? ?no edge lettering? and ?godless dollars.?
The double edge inscriptions are apparently the result of coins that have previously been edge-marked being run through the Schuler edge-lettering machine a second time in error. Since the coins are fed into the machine with the orientation of the obverse and reverse occurring at random in respect to the edge inscription die, the coins are being found with the doubled edge inscriptions either running in the same direction as each other or with the second set of inscriptions flipped over and running in the opposite direction from the first or what some refer to as bi-directional.
While the first double edge inscription pieces reported were by Alfred and Sarah Figureid of Pensacola, Fla., along with another nine by their son a week later. No other reports have been verified outside of southeastern Michigan. The Figureids found them over a period of about a week, putting one up for sale on eBay on May 17, the official date the coins were issued to the public.
Two Michigan area dealers who were interviewed, Jonathan Abbott of Abbott?s Corporation, Birmingham, Mich., and Dan Moore of Workingman Coins, Monroe, Mich., indicated that they believe collectors may divide the coins into three different varieties suggesting that they may eventually be marketed and certified that way.
Presidential dollar errors are working their way into the mainstream hobby. One sign of this is the willingness of grading services to slab them.
On April 24, the Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS) issued a statement saying they were:
?? recognizing the up or down orientation of the edge lettering on Presidential dollars. The different orientation is designated on the encapsulation insert as either Position A or B.
?Edge lettering that reads upside-down when the President?s portrait faces up now is designated as Position A. Edge lettering that reads normally when the President?s portrait faces up is Position B.?
It?s logical that PCGS and other grading services might begin to certify the latest errors in a similar fashion. Those with the dual edge inscriptions reading upside-down when the President?s portrait faces up would be Position A, and errors with the dual edge inscriptions running in the same direction as each other and otherwise reading normally when the President?s portrait faces up would be Position B. Those that have the dual edge inscriptions running bi-directionally would be ?Position A over Position B? or ?B over A.?
Since my last report, small quantities of the Adams dollars have also been reported with the edge inscriptions completely missing. According to Moore these did not start to show up until about two weeks after the Adams dollars were released. The numbers found have been significantly less than those with the double edge inscriptions, but they are being found in the same lots as the double edge inscription dollars.
One of the searchers who at the time of this writing had found just over 2,000 of the double edge inscription type had only reported finding 19 pieces with a smooth edge. Another finder, Mike Bozinski of the private Royal Oak Mint, Royal Oak, Mich., reported going out for about three hours to search banks for the doubled edge inscription coins on June 16. He said that of 1,029 Adams dollars that he was able to find in area banks, 24 had the double edge lettering while two had an inscriptionless ?smooth edge.? He said the two pieces were found in different rolls from one another but that they were in Philadelphia rolls that also contained examples of the double edge lettered errors.
Most other searchers who found small numbers of the double edge dollars reported finding none of the plain edge type.
Another isolated report came from Randolph Evans who runs a coin shop in Princeton, W. Va. He said, ?A client of mine has found a no inscription edge John Adams dollar, D-mint in rolls that he obtained in Dallas, Texas, on the first day of issue. We plan to send to NGC for certification.? So far this is the only example reportedly found in a roll of Denver coins.
Just how many of the double edge inscription Adams dollars may be found is anybody?s guess, but if an entire tub of finished coins got put back through the edge inscription machine a second time that error type could have been issued in the tens of thousands. As of June 19, the Mint still had not issued their forthcoming statement on the coins.
Ken Potter is the official attributer of world doubled dies for the Combined Organizations of Numismatic Error Collectors of America and for the National Collectors Association of Die Doubling. He also privately lists other collectible variety types on both U.S. and world coins in the Variety Coin Register. More information on either of the clubs or how to get a coin listed in the Variety Coin Register may be obtained by sending a long self-addressed envelope with 63 cents postage to P.O. Box 760232, Lathrup Village, MI 48076, or by contacting him via e-mail at KPotter256@aol.com. An educational image gallery may be viewed on his Web site at www.koinpro.com <http://www.koinpro.com>