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SERIES: Patterns - PR
LEVEL: Year, MintMark, & Major Variety

1860 25C J-268 (Proof)

PCGS #:
12066
Diameter:
Designer:
Robert Ball Hughes/Christian Gobrecht
Weight:
Edge:
Reeded
Mintage:
Unknown
Metal Content:
Copper-Nickel
Condition Census (Explain)
Pos Grade Thumbnail Pedigree and History
1 PR63 estimated grade  

Plate coin in "100 Greatest U.S. Error Coins"

William Woodin Collection - 1914 ANS exhibit - King Farouk Collection - Paramount 11/1973:309 - NASCA 11/1977:520 - Stacks 9/1986:1005, $1,100

Condition Census (Explain) Show fewer rows
Pos Grade Thumbnail Pedigree and History
1 PR63 estimated grade  

Plate coin in "100 Greatest U.S. Error Coins"

William Woodin Collection - 1914 ANS exhibit - King Farouk Collection - Paramount 11/1973:309 - NASCA 11/1977:520 - Stacks 9/1986:1005, $1,100

Ron Guth: Judd 268 features the regular dies (obverse and reverse) of an 1860 Quarter Dollar struck on a copper-nickel planchet.  The only known example appears to have been struck without a collar, causing the denticles to stretch and expand outward.  Though Judd lists the edge as reeded, we suspect it might be plain since no collar was used.

The source of the planchet remains subject to debate.  One possibility is a blank for a regular Copper-Nickel Cent of the year.  However, the diameter of a Quarter Dollar is 24.3 mm versus 19.0 mm for a Cent, representing a fairly significant difference.  Under such circumstances, one could expect the planchet to split at the edge as the metal expanded outward.  There is also the question of the weight.  At 70.1 grains (or 4.54 grams), the Judd 268 falls well below the statutory weight (4.70 grams) of a Copper-Nickel Cent.

Curiously, a better fit might be the Copper-Nickel blanks used for the experimental Half Cents of 1856 (Judd 177).  The diameter of a Half Cent is 23.0 mm, which is much closer to the stautory diameter (24.30mm) of an 1860 Quarter Dollar.  The average weight of the examples of Judd 177 cited by Pollock is 70.3 grains, just slightly above the weight of the only known Judd 268.  However, this forces us to believe that a Copper-Nickel blank for an 1856 Half Cent was laying around at the mint for four years, or it raises the intriguing possibility that the Judd 177 1856 Half Cents were struck in 1860.