1878-P VAM-168 Doubled P
Discovered by Leroy Van Allen, December 1965. Revised 2007.
168 (revised) II/I 31 - B2n (Doubled P) (193) I-3 R-6
Obverse II/I 31 - Type II LIBERTY; Doubled bottom serifs of P and metal on R of PLURIBUS. Metal on right side of U in UNUM. All stars on left and first three on right doubled. All stars on left doubled and first three stars on right doubled. Strongly doubled lower right serif of P with line even with base end. Three spikes below front eyelid.
Reverse B2n - Broken R,Vertical and diagonal bars with fine lines on surface engraved between eagle's right wing and body. Thin vertical bar with fine lines on surface engraved between eagle's right wing and leg. Weak feathers in middle of eagle's left wing from overpolished die. Also has partially open o in God. (Also 169.)
1. Considered to be scarce in all grades,scarce in xf , rare in AU and unknown in BU. Just 42 specimens had been attributed by PCGS as of Nov/ 2012, all circulated! (48 by 2017) One of the few 7TF VAMs selected by PCGS to be included for attribution. (8/2017 - Together, PCGS, ANACS and VSS have attributed 86 problem-free examples.)
2. The obverse is shared with VAM-120, however VAM-120 is possibly a listing error and does not exist! On the obverse, the P of PLURIBUS is doubled like many 7TF vams, but a pair of large spikes jut from the eye, thus separating the VAM-168 from others. Obverse diagnostics are the eye spikes. They are much more prominent on higher grade coins:
3. The VAM 168 has very strong doubling on BOTH feet of the P in PLURIBUS, not just the right foot as on the 166. On coins above VF, this is absolutely clear. LEARN THIS This is a very easy way to rule out this coin.
LVA Plate Photos:
Documentation of the manufacture of the Morgan dollar dies said that it took from 7-10 hubbings to fully bring up the design in the die.
Misregistration between hubbings is what causes doubled dies. Misregistation between all of the hubbings causes what we see on
the VAM 168, which shows septupling on the P and quintupling-sextupling on many other peripheral elements.
If you were under the impression that the VAM 166 has strong “gouges” under the eyelid, then this would have a tendency to throw you. However, the 166 is very weak under the eyelid and the VAM 168 is super strong under the eyelid. These marks will be visible on almost any specimen.
This is the “open” O in GOD on the reverse of the VAM 168. The O is complete on the VAM 166. This is very important if you are having to rely on memory for all the little attribution guidelines, but if you remember that O on the 166 is complete, 2 of the more difficult coins that have to be ruled out ( the 168 and the 165) are “open.” Note: there are 2 light lines connecting the gap, but they are recessed. LEARN THIS
The 5th and 6th left stars are strongly doubled on the VAM 168. This is significantly different from the 166.
The reverse of the coin is B2n for accuracy, which has the engraved lines between the eagle’s breast and it’s right wing. Note: Quite a few of the obverse letters are significantly doubled, but we have shown the most important pick up points.
Above photos and text are courtesy of Ash Harrison.
The reverse is cataloged as the standard B2n reverse with broken 'r' of 'trust'; however the 'o' in 'God' is broken as well.
Full Coin Photos
2 sets Full Coin Copyrighted© VAM-168 Images on loan to VAMworld courtesy ©[Heritage Auctions] ATTRIBUTED BY Ron Hagler