Best resource for satin and matte low relief peace dollar proof diagnostics?

General discussion board about VAMs, but no buy/sell offers
Forum rules
All posts to this forum must abide by the posting rules. Continued posting to any VAMWorld forum constitutes acceptance of the rules.
Post Reply
Posts: 8
Joined: Sat Jul 02, 2022 12:31 pm

Best resource for satin and matte low relief peace dollar proof diagnostics?

Post by coinnoob7 » Sat Jan 28, 2023 3:47 pm

If there's no list of diagnostics anywhere are there higher resolution photos than on PCGS or microscope photos somewhere?

Since they were experimental I've heard they ran the dies to failure and melted most of the coins, but hypothetically if the a later die stage coins did survive, that is with normal flow lines since the satin/matte finish would've deteriorated, what diagnostics would it share with the early strikes? Does anyone have a primary historical source to confirm or discount this possibility?

Of course they're absurdly rare and this is just an interesting thought experiment but y'all would know best. Thanks.

User avatar
Posts: 2081
Joined: Fri Jun 01, 2018 1:48 pm
Location: Ohio

Re: Best resource for satin and matte low relief peace dollar proof diagnostics?

Post by vampicker » Sat Jan 28, 2023 5:34 pm

I'd say the Peace Dollar Red Book done by @RogerB . I'd also suggest looking at images of examples from the Heritage Auction archives
often the crusher of hopes and dreams

Posts: 976
Joined: Mon Nov 04, 2019 2:30 pm

Re: Best resource for satin and matte low relief peace dollar proof diagnostics?

Post by RogerB » Sat Jan 28, 2023 6:11 pm

The low relief 1922 Peace dollar proofs were struck during or just before the meeting of the Annual Assay Commission in February that year. Members of the Commission were shown the coins - the first low relief pieces - and at least one or two were sold for their face value: $1 each. Some others were sold to mint officers involved with the project, and at least one went to James Fraser since he was a creative consultant from the beginning of the competition in 1921.

Only one die pair was used and there is no known record of the number struck or of the number that were sandblasted. (A satin and sandblast proof are identical except for the post-strike sandblast.) The die were from the first hubs with somewhat better obverse detail than later circulation issues and the olive branch detached from the eagle's leg. Approximately 200,000 circulation pieces were struck as test production, and examined by James Fraser. He approved the design and also approved combining the test pieces with normal Philadelphia circulation strikes and releasing them. The test production and early normal production piece are identical and we lack enough information to make any reasonable assignment of any coin to one pair of hubs, or to the later pair adopted before dies went out to the other mints.

Satin 1922 LR proofs have full design detail, sharp square rims for most of the periphery, and sharper edge reeds. These and other anti-counterfeiting details are known to the major authentication companies.

Sandblast 1922 LR proofs have slightly blurred fine detail due to the abrasive action of fine grit, and the surfaces will be dull. The edge is identical to satin proofs -- they all started out the same way.

Novice collectors accustomed to the usual flat 1922 and 1923 Peace dollars, routinely jump to conclusions when the happen across one with good detail from the first hubs.

Also note that the VAM hub description is backwards. The ones mentioned in my book are historically correct.

Hope this helps.

Post Reply