Bidding is now live on GreatCollections.com for the opportunity to acquire the single finest 1968 “No S” Cameo Proof Roosevelt dime graded as PR-69. As an interesting and historically important mint error, this conditionally unique coin would be the centerpiece for any numismatists’ collection of modern American coinage. Because there have only been 20 recorded auction sales of the “No S” 1968 dime in the past 10 years, collectors wishing to bid should be aware that the auction for this important piece ends in four days on Sunday, April 10 at 4:58:08 PM Pacific Time (7:58 Eastern). At the time of publication, the highest of 47 bids stands at $20,500 USD.
“No S” Roosevelt proof dimes were struck in 1968, 1970, 1975, and 1983. While the 1975 is by far the rarest, and with only two to five examples extant considered one of the major US rarities, the 1968 “No S” is the first example of this error occurring in this denomination. The PCGS and NGC censuses list 35 examples and 12 examples of this error type, respectively. Due to most coins of this variety being well struck, a significant percentage of certified examples survive in MS-67 or higher. In fact, while only one example is graded as Deep Cameo, 16 coins (roughly 46% of the total population examples) have been designated as Proof Cameo.
Unlike most errors, the “No S” dime was not the fault of the production mint. In 1968, the Proof die manufacturing process was conducted in the Philadelphia Mint’s die shop. At the end of the production process, the mint mark was punched into the dies, and at least one slipped through without. These error dies were then shipped across the country and used on the mint floor. Since only a small number of examples are known, it is probable that only one set of dies was actually used. But because there are no public mint records on the subject, we do not know if this was the only die sent to the San Francisco Mint.
While there are no public auction records for this particular coin, the auction record for a PR-68 sold in 2006 stands at $48,875 USD. More recently, the sole extant example certified Deep Cameo was sold in December 2020 for $47,000. While the highest-grade PR-68+ standard Proof sold for $29,375, the auction record for a standard Proof 1968 “No S” dime stands at $40,250 for a PR-67 example, sold in July 2008. These should be compared to the fact that in 1997, a PR-68 example graded by PCGS sold for around $6,000.
Most of the obverse design consists of a left-facing bust of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. In the northwest quadrant, directly in front of Roosevelt’s face, is the standard legend LIBERTY. Below the presidents’ chin, in smaller letters is the motto IN GOD WE TRUST.
Directly below the neck truncation on the bust are designer John Sinnock’s initials (JS). Placed at a slightly higher line than the motto and to the right of the initials is the date 1968. Unlike most Proof dimes struck at the San Francisco Mint that have the mintmark “S” directly above the date, this “No S” 1968 Cameo dime does not have a mintmark.
Centered in the reverse design is a flaming torch symbolizing liberty. The torch sits between the olive branch of peace on the left and the oak branch of victory on the right. Split into four parts between the branches and torch is the USA’s traditional motto E PLURIBUS UNUM. Since the words are divided as follows, E PLU / RIB / US U / NUM, there are centering dots between each word. This central design is completely surrounded by the words UNITED STATES OF AMERICA at the top and the slightly larger denomination ONE DIME on the bottom.
The edge of the 1968 “No S” Roosevelt dime is reeded.
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