1878-P VAM-215 Proof Doubled Date, Extra Feather
Discovered by Bob Cohen, Septemnber 1973.
215 III1 1 · C2a (Doubled Date, Extra Feather) ( ? ) I-4 R-6 Proof
Obverse III1 1– Lines in all wheat leaves, with more detail in cotton boll tops than type II obverse. Thin vertical bars of LIBERTY letters. Complete ribbon line at bottom of Phrygian cap. Obverse is believed to be very similar to 1878-P VAM-202, but further study is needed.
Reverse C2a– Same as C1a except that inner serif of left A in AMERICA is thinner. Bottom feather of eagle’s right wing extends to junction of next two feathers, and a thin line is present between eagle’s right leg and first wing feather. Reverse is similar to 1878-P VAM-210.
1. First proof die to use the Reverse of 1879. The die can be identified by two bulges on the D of DOLLAR and a nearly vertical die scratch above the eagle's right foot. This same die was used for proof coinage for all 1879 and 1880 Morgans. A useful marker to identify circulated proofs. This reverse die has never been confirmed on any business strike for the three years it was in service.
2. This proof only variety is one of the rarest of all VAMs. The Reverse of 1879 proof has a reported mintage of 50 pieces, and there are reportedly 12 to 15 surviving examples.(JR)
LVA Plate Photos:
Tip of bust points at a denticle, a key diagnostic of the type III1 obverse hub.
Lump on the D of DOLLAR visible to the naked eye1878 Reverse of 79 proof images courtesy of Steve Contursi, Rare Coin Wholesalers
1878 C2 reverse curved feather at base of wing on 1879 proof
vertical scratch up from inner talon of right foot on 1879 proof
close up of the lump on the D of DOLLAR on an 1879 proof exact reverse die used to strike all 1878 VAM 215 Proof Morgans