1878-P VAM-161 Shifted E
Discovered by Leroy Van Allen, December 1965.
161 II/I 21 - B2c (Shifted E) (194) I-2 R-4
this variety shows an overpolished nostril
1. The VAM-161 shares its obverse with 1878-P VAM-119.However, the VAM-161 has a broken r in trust on the reverse. NOTE:vam 161 is rare in choice au and ultra rare in any ms grade, as of jan/2013 there is only 1 uncirculated vam 161 (pcgs ms63)
2. Note #2: A 2nd known Mint State found 6/2017 graded ANACS MS62, proving to be an ULTRA Rare find in MS.
3. Note#3 UNC number three was certified 6-2018 in PCGS 62.
LVA Plate Photos:
The VAM 161 distinguishable by the unmistakable tripled inner ear. The only thing is—when you are attributing the VAM 166, it can be hard to remember to check it. So, if you LEARN THIS you will be fine. If you don’t, or you just forget, these other markers will help, and you’ll get it.
The E in E PLURIBUS is unique on the VAM 161. The notch in the bottom is the deepest notch you will see in the coins in the 160 range. The doubling at the top right is also the largest spread, but there are other VAMs this marker resembles.
This is one of the very interesting things about the VAM 161. There is almost NO doubling of any significance on the P in PLURIBUS. Yes, there is the smallest amount on the upper loop on the outside, but both of the “feet” on the P look essentially normal. This will help. Once you see this coupled with the E, and then if you happen to check the ear, you have a lock on the variety.
This is the R in PLURIBUS, and it is about as normal as they get in the 160 series. There are two notes—first the inside of the top loop has the metal from where the R was struck with the I, and second, the inside foot of the left vertical is very weak. On MANY of the 7tf coins, this is very weak or missing, so one should not place a lot of validity to using these markers. Most of the other letters are normal in E PLURIBUS UNUM.
Above photos and text courtesy of Ash Harrison.