Why do some catalogs list the Trade dollars out of date sequence after the Morgan and Peace dollars?
It?s a matter of editorial preference that traces back to the fact that the Trade dollars were essentially a special issue. They were not related to the normal dollar series, so they were positioned differently to prevent readers from confusing the issues.
Are there any distinguishing markers that can be used to detect the genuine Grant commemorative with star?
The genuine pieces with star have a die clash of the space between the leaves extending from Grant?s chin to the G in GRANT and another of the tops of the trees above the letters F DO. Some early reference works describe these marks as die lines, die cracks or die breaks, all of which are incorrect.
Why is it that you list single specimens of the proof Franklin halves for a higher price than the proof sets that contain them?
Besides the dealer markup to cover the cost of removing and repacking the coins, the higher price of Franklin halves is mainly because many of them are poor strikes. There are relatively few top grade proof halves. An unopened proof set containing a gem proof half would undoubtedly bring more than the market price. So would the single coin.
Who gets the credit for the IN GOD WE TRUST motto on our currency?
In 1861 the Rev. Mark Richards Watkinson of Pennsylvania wrote Secretary of the Treasury Salmon P. Chase suggesting ?God, Liberty, Law? for our coins. Chase agreed to the idea. The familiar motto then appeared on the 2-cent piece in 1864, but it was not made law for paper money until July 11, 1955.
My coin isn?t listed in any of your catalogs. How do I find out about it?
In nearly every case, pieces that you can?t find in a catalog usually are tokens or medals, not coins. Some coins are listed only in specialty catalogs, such as minting varieties.
How many genuine Brasher doubloons are known?
At last count there are seven genuine doubloons, and as many thousands of copies. Of the genuine examples, one is in the Smithsonian, one is in the Yale University collection, one belongs to the American Numismatic Society.
There was one in the Johns Hopkins University collection sold in 1981 and the other three were in private hands.