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Counterfeit Coin Detection – A Fake 1861 Type 2 US Gold Quarter Eagle

Counterfeit Coin 1861 Type 2 Quarter Eagle

Counterfeit coin – 1861 Type 2 Quarter Eagle


By Max SpiegelNumismatic Guaranty Company (NGC) ……

Raised lumps of metal and lack of detail are red flags on this counterfeit coin – 1861 Type 2 Quarter Eagle.

NGC graders recently evaluated a submission of US gold pieces that included a counterfeit coin – 1861 Type 2 Quarter Eagle with several diagnostics frequently seen on a variety of dates. Although it is a low-quality fake, it is typical of many of the counterfeit gold coins seen by NGC on a regular basis.

The 1861 Quarter Eagle is a relatively common issue with a mintage of nearly 1.3 million pieces, divided between Type 1 (Old Reverse) and Type 2 (New Reverse). The Type 2 variety is the more plentiful of the two and is distinguished by a modified reverse design, which features smaller letters and arrowheads. As of October 2013, NGC had certified 1,232 examples of the 1861 Type 2, compared to just 110 pieces for the 1861 Type 1.

Counterfeit 1861 Type 2 Quarter EagleCounterfeit coins exist for every date and type of US gold coin so it is no surprise to see fakes of a fairly low value issue like the 1861 Type 2 Quarter Eagle. The most obvious issue with this forgery is the raised lumps of metal above the eagle on the reverse. Although these lumps are not always so prominent, they are repeatedly seen on fakes.

Another problem with this coin is the lack of detail on the obverse. A genuine example would usually have significantly sharper design elements, but counterfeiters often have trouble imitating this precision. There is also an unusual wire-like rim that protrudes from the perimeter of both sides.

It is important to look for these types of red flags on a coin. Many counterfeits share the same or similar flaws, so a knowledge of the most common diagnostics can allow you to quickly identify the majority of low or average-quality fakes.

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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