U.S. & World Coin News and Articles

Tips on Using PCGS CoinFacts

Most collectors of U.S. coins focus on the regular issues – coins they recognize from their childhood or which their parents gave them as gifts. Just about every collector is familiar with Morgan Dollars, Buffalo Nickels, Large Cents, Mercury Dimes and all the old, obsolete coins. However, some rich collecting areas exist on the periphery, outside of the mainstream, in the back of the book (so to speak), where incredible beauty and rarity can be found. These areas include Colonial Coins, Patterns, Territorials, Hawaiiana, Confederate coins, and much more.

Take Pattern coins for instance. Patterns are prototypes used to test proposed changes in designs, metal compositions, or simply to try a die, or to see what a coin might look like in a larger or smaller size. Collectors follow the numbering system developed by Dr. J. Hewitt Judd in United States Pattern Coins, now in its 10th edition.

PCGS CoinFacts includes a ton of information and images about these unusual coins, many of which are extreme rarities. There’s even a Condition Census which, while not complete by any means, is the first real attempt at listing the finest U.S. Pattern coins by condition. PCGS CoinFacts lists up to ten examples, if that many exist, or fewer if the coin is an ultra-rarity. Pedigree chains are built using the PCGS Auction Prices Realized and, where possible, duplicate appearances are combined to give a more accurate picture of what is available to collectors. Thousands of high-quality images round out the project.

Take a look at this intriguing section by clicking here. But, beware – Pattern coins are extremely addictive.

Ron Guth is President of PCGS CoinFacts. He has been active as a coin collector, dealer, writer and auctioneer since his introduction to numismatics in 1964.
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