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An 1807 Half Dollar and Friends – Jack Young’s Fun With Fakes

By Jack D. Young, Early American Coppers (EAC), and the Dark Side Group ……
 

This latest installment of my CoinWeek exclusive series will initially focus on a couple of bad 1807 Capped Bust half dollars, starting with the following ‘Bay listing.

eBay listing of a counterfeit 1807 Capped Bust Half Dollar.
eBay listing of a counterfeit 1807 Capped Bust Half Dollar.

As always, I started this review with ATTRIBUTION; the 1807 was the first date of the series, and PCGS CoinFacts breaks these down into two obverse styles: Small Stars (Overton-113) and Large Stars (Overton-114).

Star Sizes of the 1807 Half Dollar. Image: PCGS CoinFacts.
Star Sizes of the 1807 Half Dollar. Image: PCGS CoinFacts.

Considering the star size and distance to the denticles, the subject example more closely matches a Large Star.

eBay listing of a counterfeit 1807 Capped Bust Half Dollar.
eBay listing of a counterfeit 1807 Capped Bust Half Dollar.

Comparing the subject example to a genuine 1807 O-114 shows that this one is not even close! The profile and the date are way wrong.

Subject example, known genuine 1807 Capped Bust half dollar reverse.
Subject example, known genuine 1807 Capped Bust half dollar reverse.

The reverse is way off, as well. I do note two interesting features of the subject example’s reverse: a weak “B”, and what I will refer to going forward as the “2-dots”.

Subject example, known genuine 1807 Capped Bust half dollar reverse.
Subject example, known genuine 1807 Capped Bust half dollar reverse.

Continued research led to a second example from a venue I’d never heard of – but I think I know what the “BS” stands for!

Another counterfeit 1807 Capped Bust Half Dollar as seen on TrueGether.
Another counterfeit 1807 Capped Bust Half Dollar as seen on TrueGether.
Another counterfeit 1807 Capped Bust Half Dollar as seen on TrueGether.
Obverse and reverse.

OK, so here’s where the “…and Friends” part comes in.

Here are four other dated examples with the same profile and what appears to be a common attribution mark.

Additional different dated examples previously for sale on eBay.
Additional different dated examples previously for sale on eBay.

And the reverses…

Additional different dated examples previously for sale on eBay.

And as always, a twist! A little searching finds a “boat load” (pun intended) from our friends on AliExpress.

Capped Bust "Copies" from Ali Express.
Capped Bust “Copies” from Ali Express.

Much cheaper than on the ‘Bay, and only one (the common) reverse. One size fits all.

Reverse of a Capped Bust half dollar "Copy" from Ali Express.

And back to the future with the 1807-dated version, my friend and fellow counterfeit sleuth Darren posted another eBay example on my Facebook group. The 1807 Capped Bust half dollar fakes just keep on coming.

eBay listing of a counterfeit 1807 Capped Bust Half Dollar.

Another eBay example of the 1807 counterfeit for sale:

eBay listing of a counterfeit 1807 Capped Bust Half Dollar, front and back.

I am continuing the research beyond this short article; Darren and I are trying to find the genuine source variety (if there is one) for these counterfeit coins.

Although certainly not a match, the variety below may have been the inspiration for these.

Possible host coin for family of fake Capped Bust half dollars.

Stay safe out there!

Best,

Jack


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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2 COMMENTS

  1. When you right about an 1862 time, you should show a 1862 three cent silver coin. Unless my eyes are very bad, a believe your illustration shows an 1863 time. I am not Mr. Magoo.

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