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A New “Family” of Draped Bust Half Dollar Counterfeits

By Jack D. Young, Early American Coppers (EAC) ……

I have written several CoinWeek articles on groups of counterfeits I call “families”, where a genuine example is used for both the obverse and the reverse – with different dates added to create the series.

The family I discuss in this article was a new one to me and several of my friends in the “Dark Side” Facebook group, and imaged in three listings from a seller on the internet. The seller had a few of the family members we have already documented (several Capped Bust half dollars and one of the bad Draped Bust dollars), along with many genuine certified offerings. The bad raw coins were all reported and removed.

The three new one’s images as follows:

A New

A New

An astute Dark Side member attributed the inspiration as the 1806 O-109, pointed 6 no stem, with a die break at the date and possibly the 12th star; genuine example courtesy PCGS CoinFacts:

A New

Comparison image of the bad 1806 to the genuine image:

A New

Obverse comparison of suspect example and genuine one.

A New

Reverse comparison of suspect example and genuine one.

And of course, a twist! There is evidence of re-engraving of the arrows, probably to repair damage to the genuine example.

A New

Comparison of suspect Draped Bust half dollar counterfeit on the left and genuine one.

Another astute member marked up a slurry of apparent common marks between these.

A New

From the common marks in “80”, it would appear that they removed the last digit and replaced it for subsequent dies.

Continued digging by members found another 1806 reported from the internet, including edge views.

After some late-night research, I found a 2015 ANACS article on an 1801 with the same noted reverse:

That article can be found here.

And of course, continued digging found the 1805

And the latest internet listing; the seller calls it a “RARE 1806 HALF DOLLAR 50 CENT DRAPED BUST WITH UNUSUAL “OP” STAMP ON BACKSIDE”…

You can actually see part of the removed “Y” of COPY in one of the posted images!

As the research continues, we are working to identify the actual genuine source coin for this latest “family” of Draped Bust half dollar counterfeits.

Best as always,


MORE Articles on Counterfeit Coins by Jack D. Young


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Jack D. Young
Jack D. Young
An engineer by training, Jack D. Young is a researcher and author on the subject of the recent wave of deceptive struck counterfeits. He is the founder of the "Dark Side" Counterfeits and Fakes Facebook watch group, a participating member of Early American Coppers (EAC) since 2002, the Liberty Seated Collectors Club (LSCC), C4, the NLG, the ANA, and the ANS. Jack has consulted on the subject of counterfeits and their effect on the Hobby with staffers of the United States Senate Finance Committee, a senior member of the U.S. Secret Service (both with the ACTF as an Expert Network volunteer), and agents of both CBP and the Department of the Treasury. His work has appeared in various club journals, including The Numismatist, and he was acknowledged for his research by Q. David Bowers in the latter's The Copper Coins of Vermont (2018). The ACTF awarded Jack Young the Alan Kreuzer Award in 2019 and the PNG presented him with the Sol Kaplan Award in 2022. He started collecting as a youth, filling a Lincoln penny board with his grandmother, and continues to collect low-grade early large cents by date and some varieties.

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