A 2007-P George Washington Presidential dollar with a serrated edge that seems to defy logic has been reported to me by Rodger L. Poole of Fairborn, Ohio.
The coin appears to have a serrated or reeded edge as you would find on a Roosevelt dime, Washington quarter or Kennedy half dollar and last seen on a business-strike dollar on the Susan B. Anthony coin.
He said: “I found the coin in a new, paper-wrapped roll that I got from the bank. I got two rolls and this coin was in the middle of one of the rolls. I initially thought that it was a wrong coin that found its way into the roll, because it looked reeded to me. But I noticed it was golden in color and the same size as the rest of the coins, so I took the coin out and it didn’t look like the rest of them (besides the reed type markings) ... it was darker in color and a little banged up looking. The rest of them were shiny, lustrous coins except for this one, which for me, made it odder still.”
When I first saw his images I wrote off the serrations as damage. I reasoned that they must have occurred after the Schuler edge-lettering machine applied the edge inscriptions to the coin. I felt the grooved lines must have occurred some time during the coin wrapping operation where the tubes that feed the coins into wrappers are known to have at times created similar effects to slightly oversize coins, such as minor off-center cents or dimes.
However, Poole disagreed, saying that the serrations could clearly be seen underneath the edge inscriptions. I agreed to examine the coin so I could get a closer look and photograph the evidence if the aberrations did indeed occur to the edge prior to the edge inscription process, which in 2007 included the date, mintmark, E PLURIBUS UNUM, IN GOD WE TRUST and three delimiter dots.
Upon its arrival, I was surprised to see that the groves in the edges were indeed there prior to the coin being run through the edge-lettering machine. You can clearly see letters over the serrations with the most obvious ones showing under the second “0” of the date, a serration underneath the “M” of UNUM and another under the “R” of TRUST, to mention just a few.
I have no idea of what the cause was and can only say that the photographic evidence shows conclusively that the serrations were placed on the coin prior to the completion of the minting process, i.e., before the coin was run through the edge-lettering machine. Technically, this indicates that it is a legitimate error or variety coin. While it appears to be rare, its stature and value will be will be based on supply and demand.
At this point my question is: is anybody aware of a process inside the Mint that could cause this effect? If so, let me hear from you. E-mail KPotter@aol.com.