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Problems on edge damage or errors?

Garrett Reich of Michigan sent in several 2009-P William Henry Harrison Presidential dollars exhibiting what I call Shifted Edge Lettering.

Garrett Reich of Michigan sent in several 2009-P William Henry Harrison Presidential dollars exhibiting what I call Shifted Edge Lettering.


I’ve shown this effect on several earlier Presidential dollars and although many show edge scrapes, I feel that these are Mint errors, not damages, because wide areas of uninscribed rim always go hand in hand with missing portions of the inscription.

This one bears a scrape typical of those we’ve seen on other specimens of this error type with the second “U” of UNUM mostly obliterated, the “M” missing and the stars that follow beginning much closer than usual, resulting in a larger than normal gap between the last star and the date to follow. He sent seven Harrison dollars showing the Shifted Edge Lettering effect.

He also sent in a 2009-P Harrison dollar with a deep brown surface color. Interestingly, the hobby still does not seem to agree on what these discolored dollars represent. Some refer to them as improperly washed, others such as ANACS refers to them as “Improperly Mixed Alloy” and still others such as PCGS refer to them as struck on “Sintered Planchets” while NGC calls them “Improperly Annealed Planchets.” Whatever they are, they continue to be found in limited numbers for each Presidential dollar release. The color tone ranges greatly from a very light translucent brown to dark olive green with the darkest ones worth the most, according to error dealer Fred Weinberg of Encino, Calif.


Garrett also sent in four 2009-P Harrison dollars displaying a progression of strike-through errors right around and sometimes atop the “W” of WILLIAM and at the left base of Harrison’s bust. The coin appears to be struck through a bit of grease or maybe even a more waxy substance that adhered to the upper die, shifting ever so slightly from one strike to the next. I’ve shown the area of strike-through at the base of bust on one of the coins and the areas atop and below the “W” on all four pieces he sent in where the shifting of the offending material is a bit more evident.

Roger Lane of Florida sent in several 2009-P Harrison dollars with a Partially Tilted Edge Inscription. In this case much of the edge inscription is stronger at the top and weak to missing at the lower edge. This effect is most noticeable on the date and the “P” mintmark, which appears more like a stubby “D” rather than a “P.” This error appears to be the result of sloppy adjustment of the edge lettering die, allowing the coin to be run through the slotted area (where the edge lettering die is present) at a slight angle rather than flush to the die.


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. He is a regular columnist in Numismatic News’ sister publication, World Coin News, where he pens the Visiting Varieties column. 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 60 cents postage to P.O. Box 760232, Lathrup Village, MI 48076, or by contacting him via e-mail at An educational image gallery may be viewed on his Web site at