HomeCounterfeitsCounterfeit Coin Detection - 1841 Seated Liberty Silver Dollar

Counterfeit Coin Detection – 1841 Seated Liberty Silver Dollar

Counterfeit Coin Detection - 1841 Seated Liberty Silver Dollar

The 1840s were a time of real change for the silver dollar, but this particular coin is a fake

 

By Numismatic Guaranty Company (NGC) …..
The Seated Liberty silver dollar series began in 1840, when the silver dollar was struck in large quantities for the first time in decades. The acclaimed Christian Gobrecht design shows Liberty seated on a rock encircled by stars, and it was used on all United States coin denominations–from the half dime to the dollar–in the mid-19th century.

Authentic 1841 Dollar certified by NGC.
Authentic 1841 Dollar certified by NGC.

The 1841 Seated Liberty silver dollar had one of the highest mintages before the Civil War and is certainly not a key date. Nevertheless, 1841 dollar coins today generally cost hundreds of dollars in the lowest grades and several thousand dollars for the scarce Mint State examples, which is plenty of incentive for a counterfeiter. A recent submission to Numismatic Guaranty Company (NGC) contained an 1841 Seated Liberty dollar that turned out to be a fake.

Counterfeit 1841 Seated Liberty Dollar. Image: NGC.
Counterfeit 1841 Seated Liberty Dollar. Image: NGC.

This counterfeit was struck from dies made from a genuine 1841 silver dollar. We know this because it has depressions and marks that are similar to another coin that NGC examined several years earlier and declined to certify. These marks came from the original coin and were captured on the counterfeit dies. They were then replicated on every fake coin struck with those dies.

Another 1841 Seated Liberty Dollar that NGC did not certify
Another 1841 Seated Liberty Dollar that NGC did not certify. Image: NGC.
Another 1841 Seated Liberty Dollar that NGC did not certify. Image: NGC.
Another 1841 Seated Liberty Dollar that NGC did not certify. Image: NGC.

Two coins should not share the same set of marks, since such marks generally come from the rigors associated with circulation in commerce. The similar marks and depressions are highlighted in red in the images above:

Having said that, counterfeit coins struck from dies that are created from genuine examples can be quite difficult to spot. The determination of authenticity of an NGC-certified coin is backed by the NGC Guarantee.

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Numismatic Guaranty Company
Numismatic Guaranty Company
NGC was founded in 1987, and for coin grading, its opening heralded the introduction of a new standard of integrity. From the beginning NGC focused on only one objective, a standard of consistent and accurate grading. As NGC has grown to become the leader in third-party grading services, we have maintained a steadfast and uncompromising commitment to this standard. The knowledge, integrity and dedication of NGC's team of grading experts ensures you a level of grading consistency unparalleled among grading services. This record of consistency, built over the years, has helped to foster greater stability throughout the rare coin marketplace.

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