Details Morgan Dollars?

Discussion in 'US Coins Forum' started by JoshuaP, Mar 30, 2024.

  1. JoshuaP

    JoshuaP Well-Known Member

    When does a coin become a details coin? For example, I have these two Morgan dollars. The 1900 has interesting "dings" on the wings of eagle's wings. The 1898 has a small rim ding on the obverse at about 10 o'clock. Liberty's cheek is also marked. I really like the toning on the 1898. While I'm at it, the luster on the 1900 is super strong, but the breast feathers of the eagle are non-existent. Is it a weak strike or just AU? Thanks!

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    Last edited: Mar 30, 2024
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  3. Mr.Q

    Mr.Q Well-Known Member

    Both Morgans have issues, the 1898 is toning nicely but it is also partly environmental. All Morgans are collector items no matter what the condition.
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  4. The Half Dime

    The Half Dime Arrows!

    It usually depends on who you ask as to if it's a Details grade. Deep nicks can become a details grade for some, and for others, it simply lowers the grade of the coin. Some may consider a nick a scratch that others would simply look at and slightly lower the grade of the coin.

    Both coins look to have environmental damage, but other than that these are 2 nice coins because Morgans are collectible in any condition. ;)
    Barney McRae, Inspector43 and JoshuaP like this.
  5. Spark1951

    Spark1951 Accomplishment, not Activity

    That’s not true. Some Morgans, as all coins can be, are so worn or damaged they barely hold junk silver value.

    Over the last 13 years I have liquidated 3 Morgans and 2 Peace that were no longer collectable due to damage. They went to my local LCS who gave me $15-17 each and they went straight to the junk tray. Now, did someone else buy them from my LCS guy? Probably. But for silver stacking, most likely, and stacking is not collecting. I reserve the term “collecting” for items of numismatic value.
    Evan Saltis likes this.
  6. Mr.Q

    Mr.Q Well-Known Member

    I can appreciate your response @Spark1951, the only thing is if you don't want them, I'll take them. $15-17 dollars is many times over the $1-dollar original value. Thank you.
  7. Evan Saltis

    Evan Saltis OWNER - EBS Numis LLC Supporter

    When I buy them from the public, I generally offer $14 or $15. Then, try to sell at $24 each and I still have room to come down a little if they don't sell immediately.
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  8. The Half Dime

    The Half Dime Arrows!

    That's exactly why I said they're collectible in any condition. They're still worth well over a dollar, and collectors can get them in even the worst condition as junk silver. A lot of them know that Morgans aren't rare or extremely valuable, which is why they're quite collectible. Does that clear things up?
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  9. JoshuaP

    JoshuaP Well-Known Member

    I see where both of you are coming from. I personally like having Morgan dollars as junk silver over other forms of scrap. I think many collectors are in this camp. There are also those who collect based on eye appeal and do not care about worn/details Morgans and would sooner have American Eagles.
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  10. Jim Dale

    Jim Dale Well-Known Member

    I appreciate your comments about Morgans. I didn't start collecting coins until my father passed. He had over 1,000 coins and they were left to me and my brother to determine how to divide them. Having been a State Auditor for a major university, I decided to do research on the value of coins. It took about 2 years to develop a mediocre ability to determine the value of the coins. The pennies were dumped into an old pickle jar. Some coins had been bought from a coin show and others from my research. (Again, I still didn't have a perfect sense of quality and value. I did my best and just divided the pennies without determining the value. With the other coins, I would count them out and if there were 50 half dollars, I would put 25 in on box and the other 20 in the other box. After I finished, I put the 2 boxes side by side and let my brother decide which box he wanted. After a week, he decided he wanted the other box, so I shipped them to him and he gave me the other box.
    He must have gone to someone to help him figure out the value of his coins. I hadn't even looked at my box. Anyway, he seems happy with the other box which was almost exactly the same as the one I had.
    Anyway, there were some Morgans in them that were in pretty good shape. I was watching a late night coin show and saw them selling a nice set of Morgans that were graded MS65. They were 1882, 1883, and 1884. I probably paid too much for them. The set cost me $1,500. That was in 2006.
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  11. JoshuaP

    JoshuaP Well-Known Member

    I'll speak frankly here. I am trying to decide what a fair price would be to sell these two coins. I know what I am willing to give for coins but have a terribly hard time knowing how to price something I need to sell. I need to part with a few coins though, so am looking through what I am willing to part with. What would you assign as a fair price? $50-ish?
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2024
  12. eddiespin

    eddiespin Fast Eddie

    That's not atypical of a New Orleans strike. That said, hard to assess the luster without seeing how the light reacts on it. It's a VAM with those cracks if you want to try and ID it. Looks cleaned to me in those photos.
  13. JoshuaP

    JoshuaP Well-Known Member

    I'd be surprised if it was cleaned, but I am open to learn more. Forgive me if this is picture overload, but here are three of each side. Boyhowdy are there a lot of VAMs for this year! I knew it had a die break, but thought that was common for some years.

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    Last edited: Mar 30, 2024
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  14. Barney McRae

    Barney McRae Supporter! Supporter

    I can absolutely appreciate this post. I have 3 brothers. When my dad passed, we did not do anything with his coins because my mom was still living. It would have been disrespectful and she might have needed them liquidated if she landed in a nursing home and lived for another decade. She passed not much more than a year afterwards. My dad had a pirate's haul of treasure of both gold and silver. He was a stacker and not a collector though. One of my brothers and I spent 3 and 1/2 hours sorting through the hoard splitting them 4 ways. There was so much we agreed to not even look at the dates or mint marks. Near the end when we were exhausted, we put a lot of the loose silver into bags and weighed them to split them equitably, when it came to loose dimes, quarters, and half dollars. As it ended up, we all ended up with about 90 pounds of silver and about 10 ounces of gold each. It took me 3 weeks to roughly assess my own portion, and half azz catalogue what my portion was. That was just a start. I need to go back to the bank vault and start doing a better inventory. It was overwhelming at the beginning. These are good problems to have.
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2024
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  15. Barney McRae

    Barney McRae Supporter! Supporter

    Those photos do not look wiped to me. Very nice. The die crack is a PUP for a VAM for sure. I've got a bunch I'm sending to ANACS for grading and attribution. VAMS give me migraines, I'll gladly pay good money for someone else to attribute them.
  16. desertgem

    desertgem Senior Errer Collecktor

    Maybe you have noticed the darker color at about 90 degrees or so to each other. They are almost always occur from interacting with corrosive steel staples and moisture from the environment over years. Using such staples should be watched over time. Stainless steel staples are very resistant. Jim
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  17. Barney McRae

    Barney McRae Supporter! Supporter

    I hate staples period unless they are low value coins in holders much larger than intended and don't even come close to the coin.
  18. eddiespin

    eddiespin Fast Eddie

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