Article by:

Jaime Hernandez
pcgs.com
Discoveries

PCGS Grades First Native American $1 Coin Missing Edge Lettering

On March 6, 2009, PCGS received the first reported and only-known Native American dollar with the edge lettering missing.

PCGS Authorized Dealer and error coin expert Fred Weinberg submitted the coin to PCGS.

According to Mr. Weinberg, “this is the same coin that was submitted to Coin World for a press release. So far, just this one Native American coin with missing edge lettering has been found, but I wouldn’t be surprised if a few more showed up. The 2009 Native American coins have not been available through banks or normal commerce, so obtaining these coins has been challenging.”

So far, the 2009 Native American Sacagawea dollars are only available from the U.S. Mint in $25 rolls or $250 boxes. In fact, the current only-known 2009 Native American dollar coin with missing edge lettering was found by someone who ordered the $250 box directly from the Mint. Therefore, cherry pickers should try these sources to search through coins until they are released into circulation.

Another recent variety reported for the Native American dollars is weak edge lettering. Weak edge lettering coins have weakness in one letter or more on the edge lettering inscriptions. Mitch Spivack, PCGS Authorized Dealer and outside expert, said he recently found an example graded PCGS MS67 with large sections of several letters completely missing – therefore the coin received a weak edge lettering designation from PCGS. Collectors should be aware of these varieties as well as they do a command a strong premium. The reverse of the 2009 Native American dollar features a Native American woman in a one-piece Indian robe. The woman is depicted sowing seeds in a corn field along with beans and squash. Arched above her are the words “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” and below the design is the $1 sign representing the face value of the coin. The date and mint mark should be inscribed on the edge of the coin. Coins missing the edge inscriptions are referred to as missing edge lettering coins and are considered mint errors.

All 2009 one dollar coins should go through an additional minting process in order to receive the edge inscriptions. Under normal circumstances, business strike one dollar coins are dumped into large hoppers. From these large hoppers the coins are then transported to a Schuler edge-lettering machine to receive the edge inscriptions. At times a mint employee will fail to pass these one dollar coins through the edge-lettering machine. This will then result in one dollar coins being produced with the missing edge lettering and in return escape the Mint and enter circulation.

In the past, Missing Edge Lettering dollars with about 1,500 or fewer known examples have commanded thousands of dollars. Currently, this specimen is the only Missing Edge Native American dollar. Only time will tell if this will be a very scarce coin and the ultimate question is, how much is the 2009 Native American Missing Edge dollar worth?






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