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In a previous NBS newsletter, there was an excerpt about an apparent new discovery of a second specimen of the 1873-CC N/A dime.


In the latest NBS newsletter, I pasted (and edited) the excerpt on this matter.




PS Len A. is a forum member here.



Scott Rubin writes: "About the 1873-CC No Arrows Dime -

I wrote an article which appeared in Bowers and Merena's

Rare Coin Review and I think reprinted in the Eliasberg

Catalogue along with the Quarter. In the article I mention that

the 19th century Randall Sale contained such a dime. At the

time of Heaton's book on mint marked coinage he did not

consider this coin to be unique which at the time lead me to

believe there was more then one of them."


Rusty Goe writes: "Well, it was fun while it lasted, but [the grading service]

has acknowledged that there has NOT been a new 1873-CC

No Arrows dime certified. Apparently, the listing in the [population]

report was due to a "mechanical error" (typo).


This is what we suspected all along, and that is why we

asked to speak to one of [the grading service's] key personnel, who

undeniably confirmed that there was in fact a second specimen

graded. We had no reason to doubt the veracity of their

spokesman, who was unwavering even after being informed

of what a significant event it would be.


Several years ago a similar incident occurred. A second

1873-CC No Arrows dime appeared on [a grading service's population]

report, but it was almost immediately discovered to be a typo.

The owner of the coin actually had some fun with it at coin

shows, showing his beat up circulated 1873-CC No Arrows

dime in a [grading service] holder, and offering it for sale at approximately

$5500. The certificate on the holder said No Arrows, but the

coin itself, of course, had the arrows. If you have a 1999 pop

report, you can look it up. But it was soon corrected, and it

wasn't until 2003 that this latest one appeared.


Coin World's Bill Gibbs pursued this current story after we

reported it to him. Upon further examination of their data,

[the grading service's] rep. told Gibbs that his initial response had been

pre-mature, and the population figure was for an 1873-CC

WITH Arrows dime in the VG - VF range. Bill Gibbs and I

agreed that this would have been a sensational story if it had

in fact been a NO Arrows dime.


Incidents such as this illustrate how influential population data

can be to the coin hobby. Integrity and accuracy are of

paramount importance, and can not be taken lightly. There

have been millions of coins certified since 1986, and it is easy

for many to get lost in the shuffle. Most of the coins are

inconsequential, e.g. - 1881-S dollars in MS-63. But

statistics for classic rarities must be held to stricter standards.

A red light needs to flash when dates with extremely low pop

figures are added to the reports. If these additions prove to

be accurate, press releases need to be issued to share the

news with the rest of the collector community.


In some ways its disappointing that a second 1873-CC No

Arrows dime was not discovered, but in another way, it is

also satisfying to preserve the revered status afforded to the

Eliasberg specimen. Coin collecting can always use celestial



As a sidenote: Special thanks to Len A. who offered us an

interesting piece of Carson City lore.


Any comments can be sent to: Rusty Goe, Southgate Coins

5032 S. Virginia St., Reno, NV 89502,



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The pop reports are worthless in an absolute sense. Take the Starr 1884 trade dollar for instance. It's represented at least twice on the pop reports - it was in an NGC PF67 holder and crossed to PCGS. When I informed NGC to try to get it removed, the response was essentially "send us the insert and we'll delete it", even though an auction link was provided showing that the NGC insert was included with the coin in a PCGS holder.


The Knoxville 1878-S trade dollar is on the pop reports 3 times: once as PCGS MS67, once NGC MS68 and finally PCGS MS68! The Fairfield 1840 dollar twice [one at each service], the Share 1873CC dollar twice, etc etc. Even better - there are coins I know exist that AREN'T on the pop reports. For example, the Starr 1852 seated dollar is NGC MS65, but is not on the pop report!


And, of course, the pop burners - the coins submitted over and over again for the upgrade and the tags not turned in which after a while destroys the reputation of certain coins. For example, in the late 1980's, the PCGS MS65 1878CC trade dollar was submitted at least 6 times before it received the Gem grade. This resulted in the MS64 pop being overly inflated which led Bowers to state that the date was overrated in upper grades. Not true! Also, a certain MS65 1854 seated dollar was resubmitted over a half a dozen times looking for an upgrade to MS66 and the tags were thrown away! And finally, I know of an 1842 MS64 seated dollar that has been resubmitted at least 10 times looking for the gem grade. When you look at the pops for all these dates, you can see that a really tough coin has the illusion of being available!


Moral is: take the pop reports with a huge grain of salt. Certainly they can be good for relative comparisons, but in many situations they fall completely apart!

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You really should write an article about all this kind of stuff and get it published. It is valuable & important information that too few in the hobby are aware of.

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Thanks, but I really don't know that much. I read a lot, and I also scour for information. Beyond that, my knowledge is fairly ordinary.


My biggest advantage is knowing whom to consult for specialized information...




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TDN makes some good points & I'm sure specialists in other areas could point out similar problems. Is this going to lead to a complete loss of credibility in the pop reports over time? Is there any coin in pop reports which has more reported than were actually minted?

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Thanks, but I really don't know that much. I read a lot, and I also scour for information. Beyond that, my knowledge is fairly ordinary.


My biggest advantage is knowing whom to consult for specialized information...




That's just it - it is the compilation of various facts, figures, events that make for a good article. I encourage you to put one together. You have a good start on it just in this thread. Length alone does not make quality.

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