I have always liked coin collecting. When I was a kid, there was not a lot to do in the tiny town I grew up in. I think there were 100 people in town, when everyone was home on Sunday. One of the things we would do, is get our parents to take us to the neighboring town, where there was a bank, to get rolls of coins from the tellers, to search through. My favorites were the dimes, where it was quick and easy to pull out the Mercury dimes, from the Roosevelts and refill the rolls and go back and get new rolls.
Today, coin collecting, in the United States, has been revived by the US Mint issuing the state quarters. We are almost through the 50 state quarters, and the US government relizes they have a good thing going with coin collectors. I have seen 1 statistic where there are now 140 million collectors of these things. That includes me, I have made a set for all 5 of my children, including the silver ones.
I noticed bacck in 1999, an error in the Delaware quarter, that was sitting on the desk, in my office. I could not figure out at first, what was the matter with the coin, until I noticed after several days that the “e” was missing off of the words “The First Stat”e”". That was to be the first of many errors the Mint was to make on these coins. The Delaware error is common, and was caused by grease. It is worth about $20.
I am collecting a set of error quarters, for myself, as a different project, to complement the sets I made for my kids. I am not worrying about Mint marks,and such. I am just trying to get a good error coin for each State. The Mint does a pretty good job on quality, so these coins are difficult to find in change, but they are out there. I have included pictures of some of my favorites. These include; a Maryland, Tennessee, Arkansas and Florida struck on a 5 cent planchet; Maryland and Virginia with clips from the coins; South Carolina and Virginia with a missing layer of “silver” from the reverse; Conneticut that was mistruck, and my favorite, Missouri, that the Mint caught the error and then cancelled the coin by waffling it. Somehow, the coin then escaped from the Mint and made it out into circulation, where I saved it from destruction.
No one knows how many of these errors the mint makes, or, how many coins escape from the waffle machine. They are scarce, and you should be on the look out for these and other error coins. The payoff can be high. The ones I pictured are worth up to $5,000. Not a bad deal if you are getting change back for a dollar. The lucky finder can then start their own collection or,with a membership, will soon be able to sell it to collectors on WorthPoint, or through one of our auction house partners.
Good hunting! I will continue to show, in future blogs, other error coins from the US Mint.