Grading Susan B. Anthony Dollars – SBA Dollar – SBA $1

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I’m a huge coin collector, so I’m familiar with
the Anthony dollar – a coin that had big ambitions but didn’t quite
make it. It was designed to replace the Eisenhower dollar, and it
was smaller and easier to carry around. However, Congress just
couldn’t decide what images to put on the coin, and its distinctive
shape was lost during the process. Instead of being an eleven-sided
coin that was easily distinguishable from the quarter, it ended up
looking and feeling exactly like a quarter. Sadly, this ill-fated
coin was released during a time of high inflation and the unpopular
Carter presidency, and it was even called the ‘Carter quarter’ by

I’m no stranger to the Anthony Dollar, a coin
that was created with great hope and ambition in 1979-80. But it
soon became clear that it was a failed experiment, and by the end
of 1980, it was already written off. Even though a few million more
coins were made in 1981, they were only for collecting. It took
almost two decades for the existing stockpile of coins to be
distributed and used up, mostly by post offices and transit
systems. Then, in 2000, when the U.S. Mint issued the new
brass-clad dollars, an additional 40 million coins were struck,
supposedly to make up for the “shortage” of coins. However, very
few of the 1999-dated coins actually made it into circulation. Most
of them ended up in the hands of collectors and speculators, and
the ones that were in post office vending machines were mostly
1979-80 coins.

When I first started collecting Anthony dollars,
they weren’t highly sought after. Anyone who wanted a complete set
of modern coins could get them from the Mint’s Uncirculated and
Proof Sets for the regular price, but there wasn’t much of a
secondary market. Now, though, some of the recent issues are rare
in higher grades and have become quite desirable. People are
sending them to grading services such as NGC to be encapsulated.
NGC often gets large batches of Anthony dollars sent for
pre-screening. During this process, a grader selects coins that
don’t meet the minimum grade for encapsulation, making the
certified population more weighted towards higher grades.

I’m a collector of Anthony dollars and I’ve
noticed a huge difference in quality between the ones minted at the
Denver and San Francisco Mints and the ones from the Philadelphia
Mint. While the small size and weight of the Anthony dollars
typically make them less likely to have contact marks, there are
still some coins to watch out for. Die wear can cause weak strikes
and stains that may not be removable, so I avoid those. The luster
of a coin can change depending on the age of the die – fresh dies
produce a prooflike brilliance that fades to a satiny luster as the
die wears down, and then has a rich, frosty texture. Even though
the texture won’t affect the grade, everyone has their own

I take great care when handling my Anthony
dollar proof coins, as any mishandling or improper storage could
cause them to grade less than proof-68. There is still fierce
competition for pieces grading PF-68, -69 and -70. Since modern
proofs are struck two or three times, sharpness isn’t a factor in
the grading. It’s all about having pristine surfaces, toned or not,
and if toning is present, it mustn’t be too thick or blotchy.
Collectors search for coins that show the deepest contrast between
the brilliant fields and frosted devices, which NGC calls ULTRA
CAMEO. These are usually from newly installed dies, giving them the
most striking cameo effect.

I’ve always been fascinated with coin collecting
since I was young. I recently discovered The Numismatist, the
official publication of the American Numismatic Association, and
read an interesting article called From One to Seventy. It was an
inspiring story about a coin collector who began collecting at age
one and continued until age seventy, collecting coins from all over
the world. It’s incredible to think about the different stories
each coin has to tell, and how much knowledge and appreciation the
collector has gained over his lifetime. I’m so impressed by his
dedication and passion for coins, and I’m sure I’ll be following in
his footsteps soon.

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Frequently asked questions

What is a Susan B Anthony dollar coin?

The Susan B Anthony dollar coin is a United
States dollar coin minted from 1979 through 1981, and again in
1999. It was the first small-sized dollar coin issued by the U.S.
Mint since production of the previous design, the Peace dollar,
ceased in 1935.

What does the Susan B Anthony dollar coin
look like?

The obverse of the coin features a portrait of
Susan B. Anthony, with the inscriptions “SUSAN B. ANTHONY” and “IN
GOD WE TRUST”. The reverse features an eagle flying above the moon
with the inscriptions “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” and “ONE

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How much is a Susan B Anthony dollar coin

A Susan B Anthony dollar coin is worth one
dollar in face value. However, depending on condition and year of
minting, Susan B Anthony dollar coins may be worth more than one
dollar due to collector demand.

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