What may be some of the most underwhelming coins ever minted for circulation in the United States, the Anthony dollar series offers any roll searcher the chance to add a valuable coin to a collection.
When discovered among other modern dollar coins from a local bank, 1979-P Anthony dollars in particular should be examined to identify a very easily distinguishable design feature: the coin’s obverse rim!
In 1979, the Philadelphia Mint version of Anthony dollars featured a rim that was not as robust as the modified rim used on the coins issued much later in that year and then as a part of the design for subsequently dated issues of these coins.
So, coins struck earlier in 1979 by the Philadelphia Mint and with the P mint mark are the common version known as the “Narrow Rim” or “Far Date” variant or subtype.
On this variant, the border around the rim is thinner and the coin’s date appears to be farther from the rim. This is not the scarce variant.
The later struck and difficult to find variant of 1979-P Anthony dollar is known as the “Wide Rim” or “Near Date” coin. These coins feature a modified wider rim and a date that appears to be closer to the rim. This is the scarce version!
Just remember that the 1979-P Anthony dollar with the date closer to the rim is the tough one to find. The images included in this column should help you identify this variety with ease.
While searching through rolls of mixed, small dollar coins, I was lucky enough to hit a nice pocket of Anthony dollars, or SBAs as they are sometimes called.
Pieces found included all circulation issues with many coins dated 1979-P, 1979-D and 1979-S, a small number of coins dated 1980-P, 1980-D and 1980-S and even fewer coins dated 1999-P and 1999-D.
Anthony dollars dated 1981-P, 1981-D and 1981-S were issued in Uncirculated Mint Sets only and none of these were found in the rolls I searched. Of the 1979-P Anthony dollars that I found in the rolls, one piece was the scarce 1979-P Wide Rim, Near Date version!
Bill O’Rourke is a collector who has spent the past several years searching coin rolls in pursuit of his hobby.