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Finally..... a NEWP I can add to my set.

19 posts in this topic

Let's just say this particular coin has quite an amazing story of its life in just the last 2 years... Some of you might remember it from a couple years ago. Well, now it's back home. Total population for all PCGS grades = 34.


A special thanks to Brian Greer for helping to make this happen.







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All I can say is to quote michael,


My oh my oh my...


Very nice, and looked better than VF20 to me. It's sometimes difficult to distinguish wear from strike issues on that type. I usually buy AU-MS half dimes but I would take something like that in a heartbeat. :cloud9:

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How about the rest of the story for those who aren't in the know, huh?


I'm sure the story is much more interesting to me than to others and I'll need to be careful of how I relate it..... but I'll try and just stick to some facts and my personal feelings.


1. I purchased the coin raw from Brian Greer about 2 years ago.

2. I sat on it for a long time but sent it in to PCGS as the "seated" quarterly special. That particular "special" was my recommendation and was noted by PCGS that I'd recommended it being "any seated coin". Because of that I decided to send in a nice "tough" coin that merited the honor.

3. The coin came back BB'd from that submission noted as "altered arrows removed".

4. I interacted with both Brian Greer, Steve Crain, and a couple others that I felt are knowledgable in the seated area. I became very knowledgable as to the diagnostics for this particular coin; and armed with that knowledge along with the opinion of several experts in the field that the coin was indeed genuine decided to contact PCGS.

5. I communicated with David Hall about the coin and he said to send it in under Presidential review. This I did as well as sending detailed diagnostics for the coin and written opinions from some experts as to the coins authenticity.

6. The coin came back from the Presidential review BB'd as "altered arrows removed", along with an interesting memo from Mr. Hall.

7. Number 7 is more of a commentary than "just facts".

To say I was frustrated is an understatement. The fact is that this event almost lead me out of the hobby. I was 100% sure the coin was authentic. I could verify every single diagnostic on the coin. Probably the easiest of them is the weight. A simple careful weighing of the coin would easily confirm the fact that the coin could not possibly be the "arrowed" version. At any rate I was quite disappointed. It was important to me that my 1853 year set was in PCGS plastic, and now that I couldn't get the coin certified it hampered my desire to keep trying to finish the set as these coins in PCGS plastic are extremely rare and don't seem to change hands often... if at all.

8. Upon finding out the coin BB'd on the Presidential Review, Brian Greer offered to take the coin back. Remember now, that this was almost a year after I'd purchased it from him. I thought this was a real stand up thing for him to do. I agreed and sent the coin back to him. He actually refunded me more than I even paid for the coin.

9. It's my understanding that some sort of meeting of minds occured and I'm not sure of all of the parties involved, but some agreement was reached on what ARE the diagnostics for an 1853-O No Arrows Half Dime. The truth be told, I'm sure that neither PCGS, NGC or Anacs sees that many authentic 1853-O No Arrows Half Dimes as they are pretty rare, and of the few that are around, many of them are problem coins.

10. Some time recently Brian actually got in another raw 1853-O No Arrows Half Dime that was in even better condition and decided to send them in together to PCGS for certification. Both coins slabbed as original no problem pieces.

11. I purchased the coin back from Brian and am thrilled to have it back. It makes me feel somewhat vindicated. I also have a renewed vigor in trying to get back to finishing (that is trying to finish) my year set.


Like I said this may only be interesting to me but while I understand that "grading" is an opinion; I could not understand how a top tier slabber could not determine a coins authenticity. I mean, it's either real or it's not. There should be no grey area IMO.


So that's the story of the "prodigal half dime".

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That is a fantastic rarity, one that many folks don't recognize at all. I'm going to guess you paid WAY over sheet, since the greysheet is ridiculously behind on this coin. I've only ever had the pleasure of owning a single one. Congratulations on a fabulous pickup!

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Thanks all. I took it out this weekend and just looked at for awhile. :)


About paying over sheet ??? I don't even know what the sheets say as I don't subscribe to them. I can say when looking at price guides that I can see you can pretty much throw them away when it comes to most any of the 1853 No Arrows coins. At least in my case. It's common to see the NA's selling for WAY above the guides when they do sell.


Heres the bad thing... I had a very attractive PCGS slabbed 1853-P NA Half dime that I ended up selling when I thought I'd never get the "O" version. Now I wished I hadn't sold it 'cause now I'll have to find another :(

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What a great story! Persistence pays off. It's hard for me to imagine that an alteration such as removing the arrows wouldn't be detected under close study. I mean, under magnification, wouldn't SOME signs show up of the alteration?


Glad it worked out in the end!!



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A truly amazing story of stick through itness which I admire greatly. However that being said you shouldn't have sold your P NA but at least tit will be easier to replace.

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