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Errors Make Interesting Group
By Ken Potter, Numismatic News
June 21, 2013

This article was originally printed in Numismatic News.
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An American Eagle and a couple of other new variety and error finds have come my way that have been reported by readers.

A 2012 American silver Eagle that was struck through some kind of offending material in and around the UN of UNITED on the reverse of the coin is of especial interest.

Normally, I’d consider this a minor error, but what I find interesting is that a number of them were found by Kevin L. Bruner of Bruner’s Collectables in Kentucky while searching through a “Monster Box” of 2012 American silver Eagles.

“Monster Box” is a nickname dealers have given to the big green boxes that the Mint ships 25 rolls of 20 Eagles per roll in to its main distributers. These eventually end up at your favorite bullion dealers shop.

Even more interesting is that out of the 25 rolls in the box, only one roll contained this error.

Bruner says, “Nearly every dollar in the roll had a progressive degree of ‘error’ to the ‘UN’ of ‘United States of America’ on the reverse. All of the coins [in the other] rolls were fine.  I suspect that perhaps something was on the die for a short period of time.”

As an individual coin, I would place little premium on the error, but owning a significant progression of strikes is of greater interest to collectors and a modest premium should be expected.

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This one does not appear to be struck through grease (or Mint goop as I like to call it) but rather a bit of scrap metal perhaps from another coin that was misstruck, or a bit of broken metal from some of the peripheral tooling.

Don Venson of Tawas City, Mich., submitted a 1984 cent that might be a doubled die displayed as a doubled earlobe that is different than the one listed in the Red Book. However, the shape is unusual so I’m not 100 percent sure it is in the die at all, or if it might possibly be a plating blister. Due to its shape and rounded relief, I tend to feel it is in the die and would like to research this further.

I really need to see a second or even a third specimen to be able to prove that it is even in the die. If anybody has one of these I’d like to see it. This one was submitted to me at the Polish American Numismatic Society last year. Write me at the email address below.

Finally we look at a 1920 Pilgrim commemorative half dollar with a rather pronounced clashed die showing on the reverse in front of and behind the ship. It is most pronounced in front of the ship where “D” and “U” of IN GOD WE TRUST are obvious. This one was submitted to me by longtime dealer Bill Brown.

Ken Potter is the official attributor of world doubled die for the Combined Organizations of Numismatic Error Collectors of America. He also privately lists other collectible variety types on both U.S. and world coins in the Variety Coin Register. More information on CONECA or how to get a coin listed in the Variety Coin Register may be obtained by sending a long, self-addressed envelope with 65 cents postage to P.O. Box 34, Stockbridge, MI 49285 or by contacting him via email at An educational image gallery may be viewed on his website at

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