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Viewpoint: One good find deserves another

 1943-P Lincoln steel cent. (Image courtesy

1943-P Lincoln steel cent. (Image courtesy

By Matthew Kable

First, let me say that I am a coin collector, and I enjoy my collecting immensely. For me, my interests are generally in older classic U.S. coinage – Bust half dollars, etc. But I also enjoy reading about moderns and the occasional world coin news, bullion news, etc.

For the last several years, I’ve been a regular reader of your “The Buzz” blog. I enjoy the daily dose of your observations and wit. Your recent post about finding a silver dime “in the wild” at your local McDonald’s reminded me of two coin finds I’ve made recently. And one of my finds was also at a McDonald’s, so I thought I’d share, if you don’t mind. Also, maybe someone at McD’s has a thing for numismatics? Who knows?

I still accumulate a good amount of pocket change, since I still mostly use cash for everyday purchases like my lunch or groceries. I always check my change after paying for things. It’s just a habit. It’s partly curiosity and partly who knows what. Regardless, one day a few months back, I was in a hurry and didn’t look at my change until after leaving the drive-thru at McDonald’s. When I checked my pocket change later, I found I had a received a gray plastic dime as change! It looked almost real. Well, sort of, I guess. But still. Plastic! Anyway, since then I have made a habit of looking so as not to be shortchanged again.

Yes, I’m embarrassed to admit I did feel shortchanged over losing 10 cents. But, I suppose being able to tell folks about receiving a plastic dime as change is almost worth the 10 cents I lost in the transaction.

Anyway, my second experience occurred at the local grocery store in my neighborhood last week. After paying, I received my change from an automatic coin dispenser at the checkout line. Knowing that my change was only supposed to be a couple cents, I thought it odd when I picked up the coins and one was obviously NOT the shades of red, brown, or even green copper that one expects of their cents. On closer inspection, I noted that I had actually received a steel cent as part of my change. It was still pretty shiny, too, with almost no corrosion. It is a 1943 from Philadelphia. Never in my life have I seen one of these in circulation, so quite an exciting find! No, not super valuable, but still very cool. That made my day! And it more than makes up for the 10 cents I lost on that plastic dime, too.

Best regards, and keep up the blogging!

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

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