A coin with a hole is usually called a problem coin, but all holes
are not created equal. Some numismatic issues have inherent holes
(think of a coin struck on a washer-shaped planchet) while others are
always found holed because a hole was required to suspend the item,
consistent with its original function. Other holes are considered
damage and, with few exceptions, these holes always lower the value of
Several “holey” coins that sold at Stack’s Bowers Galleries’ Nov.
10, 2017, Session 7 auction held during the Whitman Baltimore Expo
showcase the different effects holes have on the desirability and
price of an item.
Here is one of them.
“1799” (1800) Washington Funeral Urn Medal, White Metal, AU-55
Among the more popular early American issues are the Washington
Funeral Urn medals, most of which are neatly pierced for suspension.
The medals are dated 1799 but were produced in 1800 and sold as
tributes to the memory of George Washington, who died Dec. 14, 1799.
It is listed as Musante GW-70E in Neil Musante’s 2016 reference book
Medallic Washington, which organizes the various Washington
medals by chronology rather than theme.
Connect with Coin World:
Sign up for our free eNewsletter
Follow us on Twitter
The description concludes that the lustrous medal, graded About
Uncirculated 55 by NGC and measuring 30 millimeters in diameter, is “a
most pleasing example of this famous medal, an item produced in memory
of Washington just after his passing, when the national sentiments
surrounding him were undoubtedly the highest.” Collectors don’t mind a
hole on this issue, since the hole is consistent with the medal’s