Complete set of Counterfeit Morgan Silver Dollars
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28 posts in this topic

So much for our excitement over the complete set of Morgan Silver Dollars found in my late father-in-laws collection.  After sending four in for grading and having them all returned as counterfeit I did a little investigating on my own.  Yep, they're fake alright - the weight is wrong by about 3 grams on average for every coin.  OK, I'll accept the fact that they are fakes but has a full set of fakes shown up before? I've seen the details on specific years and mint marks of known fake Morgan's but no where have I seen anything close to a list that includes every single coin.  Well, apparently we've got them all; 1878 - 1904 & 1921.

I also believe, with my limited experience, that each of these coins are from the same forger.  Sixteen of these coins, from sixteen different years, all have the same distinct die mark on the first "T" in STATES (see pic).  Each of these coins also carries the "O" mint mark (New Orleans).

 morganT.thumb.jpg.e502c0c2b0970deab9d0ed01c2b4c1b6.jpg   

Five that do not exhibit the mark on the "T" do all have the same messed up "S" (first S in STATES).  And all five of these coins have no mint mark.

morganS.jpg.4e60fbd90f9d3500fd3b1c684ed44104.jpg

So that leaves three more individual coins that do not exhibit either of the above defects.  However, I'm pretty sure the 1895 "D" is fake because Denver did not mint any Morgan Silver Dollars, or any silver coins for that matter until 1906.  The 1921 Morgan is the only one that was ever minted at Denver.  The other two (1892 & 1893) both have very poor "S" mint marks.

morganSmint.jpg.2b40f1165220ac58dffe9147dd7efd2f.jpg

I am aware that leaves me four short of the 28 total coins, those would be the four sent for grading which are still on there way back home. I'll find out which category above they fit into when they get here.

So now what?  I have a complete set of Morgan Silver Dollars, all of which of course are in wonderful condition, and are worth a lot of money!!  Well, if it wasn't for that little "fake" issue they'd be worth a lot of money.

Voting Time:  Sell or Melt?

Note: any sale would adhere to all laws regarding such

 

 

Edited by BWhite
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1 hour ago, Capone1929 said:

Hello All! So Many Wonderful coins, on a blessed year! God bless rudolph, chris, and ***?*** Capone1929

Why would you hijack someone's post like that? Please start your own post.

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1 hour ago, BWhite said:

 

Voting Time:  Sell or Melt?

Note: any sale would adhere to all laws regarding such

 

 

If the coins are fake, they need to be removed from the marketplace permanently. Selling them, even with full disclosure, does not mean that some future owner will not try to pass them off as real.

Welcome to the forum, by the way. Sorry that your inheritance turned out to be a disappointment. Were there other coins in the collection?

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31 minutes ago, Just Bob said:

Why would you hijack someone's post like that? Please start your own post.

Thanks, was going to ask that myself but being new to this forum I didn’t know if I was missing something or not. 

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25 minutes ago, Just Bob said:

If the coins are fake, they need to be removed from the marketplace permanently. Selling them, even with full disclosure, does not mean that some future owner will not try to pass them off as real.

Welcome to the forum, by the way. Sorry that your inheritance turned out to be a disappointment. Were there other coins in the collection?

Yeah, the more I think about it the more I agree with you. And with my luck, and memory, I’d probably be the one that bought them a year from now. 

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20 minutes ago, Greenstang said:

I believe to sell them in USA you have to have "COPY" stamped on them. Also you wouldn't be able to sell them on eBay whether they had copy stamped on them or not. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yes and yes. They’d have to be stamped “copy” and even then forget eBay. Heck you should have seen how fast they pulled my listing for an original German copy of Mein Kampf (Hilter’s book). You can buy and sell the “American” published version no problem, but no way will they allow the uncensored full German published version. Oh yeah, censorship is alive and well in America. 

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Can we see full images of obverse and reverse on a couple examples? Is there any indication of where your father-in-law acquired these? Someone like the Black Cabinet (http://www.theblackcabinet.org/browse/) might be worth contacting. The same markers on many years doesn't surprise me but them all ending up in one collection is odd.

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22 hours ago, Mk123 said:

OP man that really sucks!!! This is why counterfeits suck, get the hope of family members up, plus who knows how much your father  in law paid for these unsuspecting fakes!!

Hopefully not a lot - we will never know.  Heck, maybe he made 'em !!  [insert disclaimer for government snoop programs here]  :-)

 

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14 minutes ago, kbbpll said:

Can we see full images of obverse and reverse on a couple examples? Is there any indication of where your father-in-law acquired these? Someone like the Black Cabinet (http://www.theblackcabinet.org/browse/) might be worth contacting. The same markers on many years doesn't surprise me but them all ending up in one collection is odd.

Yes, I'll have a new camera on Monday that should be perfect for some great pics.

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17 minutes ago, BWhite said:

Hopefully not a lot - we will never know.  Heck, maybe he made 'em !!  [insert disclaimer for government snoop programs here]  :-)

 

I hestitated to ask if he was into "tinkering"...

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On 11/16/2019 at 11:52 PM, kbbpll said:

The same markers on many years doesn't surprise me but them all ending up in one collection is odd.

Not really, some of the Chinese counterfeiters actually market full sets.  Last weekend I had a dealer show me a complete set of fake Seated dollars all housed in a fake Dansco album.

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Well, I kinda feel stupid at this point.  Just search for "Morgan Silver Dollar Replica" and you will find all sorts of these coins.  Some are marked "Copy" as legally required, most are not!  The specs on these all match an authenticate coin with the weight being the only exception.  Rookie mistake, not to be repeated as I already have two (2) new precision scales.  I will post some pictures as soon as the post office delivers my new "coin cam", which should be today.  Oh and by the way, we found nine (9) more of them over the weekend.   

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So here are a few pics just for fun.  Let's start with a 1901-S in the condition we found it.

1713988630_1901-SNotCleaned.thumb.jpg.bf7b3f799160b766f6eec58601fa2635.jpg754436558_1901-SNotCleanedObverse.thumb.jpg.94ca9e901abf5cf06b7be4d691363b92.jpg

 

And here is the 1878-O 8TF after a light "cleaning"

919534973_1878-SCleanFront.jpg.e375cf5ed7f035532741ec6f1aa6d3a5.jpg

13312311_1878-SCleanObverse.jpg.c5b1cf5f6195150ecfc832a5d58af40c.jpg

 

763142598_1878-O8TFCleanedClose.jpg.6d120cdfdb34c535a297f37450bb9fed.jpg

Specifications:

Real Diameter 38.10 mm  Fakes Average Diameter 37.97 mm

Real Width 2.4 mm Fakes Average Width 2.73 mm

Real Weight 26.73 g  Fakes Average Weight 23.50 g

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There have been several sites on facebook selling full sets of 28 Morgan silver dollars.  I ordered one the name wasn't a chinese name.  When delivered the paper work had a chinese co. and all are counterfeit.  I have gone to PayPal to try to recover my money.

Be careful on facebook

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On 11/15/2019 at 8:46 PM, Greenstang said:

I believe to sell them in USA you have to have "COPY" stamped on them. Also you wouldn't be able to sell them on eBay whether they had copy stamped on them or not. 

***

There is a company I like that creatively skirts the "COPY" requirement: Intagliomint. What they do is produce 100% silver coins of classic, well-known, highly coveted designs in various diameters and thicknesses. The artwork, while sometimes imprecise is as close as one can come to the real thing.

Ever want to have a Fugio Cent or 1804 dollar to carry around with you? Now you can.

And it's perfectly legal.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Hey all! 

BWhite, bummer about the all-fake collection, sorry to see that.  I've very recently started collecting Morgan silver dollars, and seem to have picked up a fake myself.  I had done some research into the Morgans, but apparently not quite enough when I bought a supposedly 1878-O coin...  I now know none were minted in New Orleans until 1879.  On the bright side, I only paid $30 for it.  It only weighs 23 grams, and has the wrong "sound" to the metal.  Very obvious compared to a few others I've picked up.  I'm disputing the sale with eBay, but I might just keep it and not let it go back into circulation.  It arrived in a bubble pack, and inside it apppeared to be packaged in the original envelope from China, which was addressed to the seller.  Should have known the BIN deal was too good to be true, but then I didn't know about the "O" mint issue with 1878 at the time...   Also, I expected to find it to be magnetic, but it is not.  Possibly has silver content?

 

 

20210326_151755.jpg

20210326_151800.jpg

20210326_153012.jpg

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When you buy a coin in the 'raw' you'd better know who you are buying from real well.  I stopped buying 'raw', non-certified coins decades ago.  Why put myself through the misery of a later discovery.

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@Alex in PA. I am trying to reconcile what you've said here with another well-known member's ironclad stance on buying only merchandise he can examine personally, raw, and in his hand.  (I believe he eschews encapsulations.) 

I am not risk-adverse. My expectation in doing business with anyone is simple:  my end will always be straight 💯% and I will expect that you, the seller, will come correctly, too.

In assembling my collection of 🐓 🐓 🐓 I did so blindly.  I never saw (examined) the merchandise.  I did not know any of the sellers, never saw them, spoke to them, or knew very much about them beyond the representations they had made about what they had on my phone.

You either feel comfortable with this approach or you don't. 🐓🐓 🐓 don't come cheaply and while I am unaware of any incidences of counterfeiting, my only concern is terminal:  getting beat or cheated outright.  I do not know how I would feel had I inherited a complete compilation of counterfeits. I would probably donate them to a place that could use them as a teaching tool. The ANA, a museum or CBP/USSS. Passing them on, or attempting to, would be a worser crime than destroying them, but my feeling is one should always make the best of a bad situation and do so honorably and responsibly.  And if that means forfeiting them outright, so be it.

Edited by Quintus Arrius
Address sesquipedalian tendencies
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On 11/15/2019 at 9:03 PM, BWhite said:

Yeah, the more I think about it the more I agree with you. And with my luck, and memory, I’d probably be the one that bought them a year from now. 

IF I were in your place and could afford it I would send them to ICG as they will encapsulate them with a label that says counterfeit. Then you could keep them as a memory of your father and a nice talking piece and no problem with memory lapse. not to mention a nice education display.

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