1878-S VAM-17 Doubled Ear Left & D, Over Polished Lower Obverse & Reverse
Discovered by Bill Fivaz, February 1974. Revised 2011, Revised 2014 Tbconcrete, Revised itsallgood 2016
17(revised) II 1 · B2d (Doubled Ear Left & D, Over Polished Lower Obverse & Reverse) (184) I-3 R-5,6
Obverse II 1– Ear doubled at left inside and slightly to right outside. LIBR very slightly doubled at left side.
Die marker - Five short die scratch segments in vertical line in front of eye. Cross-hatch polishing lines at right wheat leaf-cotton leaf gap.
Initial die state 1 - Full hair above date. Normal broken point of 4th right star. R-6
Initial die state 2 - Over polished hair with gaps. 4th right star point shortened. R-5
Die state 3 - Die over polished again with 4th right star point missing. Slight doubling of ear on right side missing. 8-8 digits shallow. R-5
Reverse B2d– D in DOLLAR doubled at left top outside and at left and right bottom outside. Small III S mint mark set slightly to left. R in Trust not broken. Horizontal polishing lines below middle tail feathers occurs on reverse die states 1 & 2 with obverse die states 1 & 2, but is polished away and shallow ED-STA on reverse die state 3 and obverse die state 3. Die marker - Die gouge on wreath right ribbon.
Reverse die state 1 - Has normal polished die that occurs with normal obverse die state 1.
Reverse die state 2 - Only slightly more polished with weakened ED-ST that occurs with normal obverse die state 2.
Reverse die state 3 - Has been heavily polished with field showing through tail feathers and middle of wings plus shallow ED-STA that occurs with additional polishing of obverse die state 3. (Same die as VAMs 66 and 114 but later die states.)
1. Experts believe the die state of this variety with polishing lines below the tailfeather is a very rare die state.
2. The VAM-17A with denticles clashes below the tailfeather looks to be scarce but slightly more available than the rare state pictured below.
3.There was a coin mistakenly thought to be an EDS V17 with full hair by initial on obverse. It turns out to be an unlisted die pair. It has the obverse of the V73/107 and the reverse of the V17/66 .
4. It seems the V17EDS with the full lower hair might be this unlisted die pair. Guys with the V17EDS with full hair may want to check their examples for the II30 obverse die (VAM 73/107) and the B2d reverse (VAMs 66/17). Now called the VAM 114
5. Reverse Dies same 1878-S VAM-66 and 1878-S VAM-114
6. Strongly question current VAM 17 listing as the obverse plate in the 78-S guide does not match the obverse of the original VAM 17A discovery piece. The plate in the guide may be of a misidentified VAM 66 or yet another unlisted pairing using the VAM 17 EDS reverse. The actual VAM 17 obverse has slight doubling on the tip of the lid, not along its underside. Instantly identified by a series of four tiny gouges in a diagonal line in front of eye up to the tip of the eyelid - John Roberts
7. VAM-17 Obverse Die Progression
LVA Plate Photos:
Note: there is also a later die state of VAM-17 that has been polished down without the deep lines. This die state is the most common of the three states and is know to even have prooflike examples. Die State 3 bow shown below
Mark useful for die identification in the bow
D in Dollar is doubled in the upper left and lower right.
Die State 3: Point on 4th star missing
Die State 1,2,3, Mint mark shifted slightly left. The photo below is from a D1/D2 but D3 has the same MM position
Die State 3 showing the Date is shallow and slightly left of normal, hair terribly over polished
Full Coin Photos
Large Full Coin Copyrighted© VAM-17 LDS Die State 3 on loan to VAMworld courtesy ©[Heritage Auctions] ATTRIBUTED BY ANACS