1878-P VAM-32 7/3 Tailfeathers with line in tailfeathers
Discovered by Leroy Van Allen, April 1965. Obverse discovered by Neil Shafer, November 1964. Revised 2010
This coin is a Top 100 Morgan VAM.
32 II2 - B/Ac (7/3 Tailfeathers with line in tailfeathers) (179) I-3 R-6
Obverse II2- Normal type II obverse with broken point off 4th star right and 7 in date doubled on right side (hub defect).
Die marker - Diagonal die scratch down from right cotton boll. Also VAM-45. Later slightly polished die state than VAM-45.
Reverse B/Ac- Three tail feathers ends showing. Design remains in leaves of branch and in bow of wreath. Die Chips in IN GOD WE TRUST; doubled O, D, and W.
1. The 1878-P VAM-32 is one of the more rare 7/8 tailfeather coins. The reverse is heavily polished as evidenced by the missing details in the tailfeathers. This polishing appears to have lead to amazing mirrored finishes as this coin often comes in DMPL or PL surfaces. The key reverse identifier is the diagonal line in the tailfeathers. Other 7/8 coins are gouged in a similar location: VAM-45 has a has a pair of gouge lines. VAM-34 has three lines. This VAM, VAM-32, has one line.
LVA Plate Photos:
Closeup of the taifeather gouge and 3 extra tailfeather tips:
The bow has heavy polish lines and a extra blob of metal on the right.
The leg area is extensively polished and shows doubling:
The B in LIBERTY has a large gouge that is a good diagnostic:
On the obverse, there is a curvy die scratch near the cotton bolls:
The 4th right star is broken, a hub defect transferred to this die.
The date on VAM-32 has no major doubling, unlike many other 7/8 coins.
Full Coin Photos
- The Top 100 Morgan Dollar Varieties: The VAM Keys Copyright 2009 RCI. With permission from the authors Michael S. Fey, Ph.D., [http://www.rcicoins.com], and Jeff Oxman, [http://www.vamlink.com]