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Community Voice Responses (February 19, 2019)

From the Jan. 25 Numismatic News E-Newsletter:


Should the Mint deliberately put a doubled-die cent into circulation?

Here are some answers sent from our e-newsletter readers to Editor Dave Harper.

I think they should! It would certainly get people looking! Might increase cash usage in order for people to get change back as well. Hmm, I just wonder what denomination they would stick to, or if that would be a mystery as well!

Tony Brubaker
Elkton, Md.

No, for multiple reasons.

Steven B. Gray
Sylva, N.C.

Absolutely not! This reminds me of the Dag Hammarskjold incident from the 1960s (1964?). A commemorative stamp in his honor was issued, and one sheet was erroneously printed with a color inverted. When the Post Office learned of it, they printed bazillions more like that. It was a public relations mistake, since the lucky first finder may have had a nice windfall but instead got nothing. In the meantime, now the correctly printed version is probably worth more than the error (not an error, an “intentional”).

The Mint already has a big problem with way too many products with no reason to exist besides to have another inventory item to use to separate American coin collectors from their money. Let us not encourage them to continue with this trend.

Thomas Miller
Santa Rosa Calif.

As an avid collector of coins and medals, I find what draws me to each is its record of history, its design elements and their meanings, the overall aesthetics color and hue of the patina, and its rarity based on original numbers minted.

However there are many collectors who value rarity based on mistakes during the minting process such as a doubled die. I do not understand the affinity for collecting imperfections. To me, it’s like collecting five-legged rabbits. Can anyone explain this fascination?

Richard Koch
Address withheld

The Mint, or its employees, have intentionally created illegal, or intentional, coins in the past, usually only for their own financial benefit. If the Mint were to intentionally do so today, just exactly how would they determine the number of the coin “errors” to produce? Would they make them fairly common, or true rarities? Based on their record of catering to only the high rollers of numismatics, they would probably make the intentional error a rarity, and they would be intentionally released to the high-dollar collectors only. For the rest of us, who in the heck cares?

Rick Anderson
Tucson, Ariz.

No deliberate errors.

Julian Leidman
Silver Spring, Md.

I think if the Mint intentionally puts a doubled-die coin into circulation, or in one of its specialty proof sets, it would be in poor judgment.

Steve McGowan
Algonac, Mich.

This article was originally printed in Numismatic News Express. >> Subscribe today

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