Variety 104a

 Obverse 2.2: Late Die State, Medium Date, Star 9 and 10 Repunched

Reverse D.2: Late Die State, Small O, [mm C,C], Die Crack UNI(T)ED


Obverse 2.2                                             Reverse D.2


Obverse Diagnostic Point(s)                  Reverse Diagnostic Point(s)



Comments: Obverse 2 exhibits excessive erosion during this very late die state. The stars are seen as blobs without their internal contours. Denticles below the date digits are completely effaced.

Reverse D also exhibits considerable die erosion around the legend. A die crack is present from rim through UN(I)TED to the left wreath. Die roughness between DI(ME) is also noted. 

Plate Coin: G. Fortin Collection, EF45


Special F-104a Collector Submission by Angelo Dwyer Macero III

February 2013


During December 2012, Angelo Macero from Huntsville, Alabama contacted the author concerning an 1840 Philadelphia dime that he suspected was actually struck at the New Orleans mint. His dime was peculiar due to missing device details on the obverse and reverse. On the obverse, the scroll area in the shield and all of the letters in LIBERTY were missing. On the reverse, the top of IM letters in DIME were also weakly struck.

As Mr. Macero explained, the above imaged dime has been in his family for over 50 years and consistently held in holders labeled as an 1840 Philadelphia strike by his grandfather. Upon reading the Liberty Seated dime web-book at www.seateddimevarieties.com and matching the 1840 dime with 1840 Philadelphia and New Orleans images, Angelo concluded his dime was an 1840-O with missing mintmark due to the excessive obverse die wear on his dime matching that of the F-104a plate coin. Closer inspection of the dime revealed a faint outline of an O mintmark consistent with the F-104a mintmark and position.

The author received the dime for inspection during early February 2013 and immediately corresponded with Mr. Macero with the following opinion;

Without a knowledgeable person reviewing this dime, it would surely trade as an 1840 No Drapery at low price. But it is a very interesting 1840-O F-104a variety with late obverse and reverse die states. This dime grades a full VF and is original.

Next I looked at Liberty and the missing mintmark and center reverse depression. I'm convinced that the missing Liberty and center reverse depression areas were created during the striking process and not later by someone tooling those areas. I placed the dime under a high power stereo microscope and studied the bottom's of the depression and missing mintmark areas. The surfaces and toning in those areas are completely consistent with the surrounding metal.

Bottomline, the dies used to strike this coin had a foreign substance (most likely grease) that stuck on the obverse and the reverse dies. The material blocked the metal flow in those three areas and most importantly the mintmark.


1840-O Varieties 101, 101a, 102, 102a, 103, 103a, 104, 104a, 105, 106, 106a, 107, 108, 109, 109a, 110, 110a, 111

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