U.S. & World Coin News and Articles

1937 Antietam Half Dollar Counterfeit

Fifteen years ago, E.G.V. Newman of the British based International Bureau for the Suppression of Counterfeit Coins (IBSCC) released new information on fake U.S. Commemorative coins. One of those coins, a 1937 Antietam 50¢, didn't seem a likely coin to be counterfeited. After the initial release of information in 1980, very few were ever seen. Yet here it is, 1995, and what should make its way into PCGS but a counterfeit 1937 Antietam Half Dollar.

Typically, these fakes have a dull grey finish with a lack of luster. In addition, there are many characteristics which easily prove this coin a forgery.

First, look to the cheek area for what appear to be bag marks. These are actually depressions that repeat from fake to fake. There are also odd, raised lines that can be found through the letters of Anniversary. Another depression can be found on the D of United.

Sometimes the best fakes are coins which you would least suspect. This Antietam, the Stone Mountain Commemorative, and the 1937-D Boone are three coins that can easily get through the defenses merely because they are not thought to be worthy of the counterfeiter. While extremely rare, keep in the back of your mind that just about anything can be copied.

These "bag marks" are not random; They appear in the same place on fake after fake.
What appears to be a die crack through "Anniversary" is actually a diagnostic of a counterfeit Antietam 50¢
Look for the chip out of the "D" in "United"

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