US Coins

Proof 1975-S No S dime retains its ‘top’ U.S. modern ranking

The Proof 1975-S Roosevelt, No S dime remains at the top of the list of coins listed in the third edition of Scott Schechter’s and Jeff Garrett’s 100 Greatest U.S. Modern Coins to be released July 4 by Whitman Publishing.

The 128-page, 10-inch by 12-inch coffee-table book focuses on post-1963 circulating, bullion and commemorative issues avidly sought by collectors today.

Schechter and Garrett selected and ranked the 100 Greatest U.S. Modern Coins based on input from leading coin dealers, researchers and collectors, and a survey of current hobby journals and periodicals.

The ranking, according to Schechter and Garrett, includes prized and seldom-seen rarities, including the 2000-P double denomination mule error featuring the George Washington obverse from the State quarter dollar series paired with the Sacagawea dollar Soaring Eagle reverse and struck on a manganese-brass clad dollar planchet.

“We decided that all the coins on the list should be collectable,” Schechter says. “Potentially illegal coins are not. This explains why the 1974 aluminum cent was dropped from the first edition, and why several other coins are absent: the fabled 1964-D Peace dollar and the 2000-W Sacagawea dollar struck in gold.”

New rankings in the third edition include the Enhanced Uncirculated 2013-W American Eagle silver dollar and the Reverse Proof 2013-W American Buffalo gold $50 coin.

A new section on “Modern-Coin Grading Essentials” was contributed by Mark Salzberg, chairman of Numismatic Guaranty Corp.

Ranked No. 1

The Proof 1975-S Roosevelt, No S dime maintains its number one ranking from the second edition.

“The 1st edition was published [March 4, 2011] before the ‘rediscovery’ and sale of the 1975 No S dime,” Schechter said. “We discussed it in the text of the other No S dimes, but didn’t rank it as none had ever sold and none had been seen since for over 30 years.

“The 1969-S Doubled Die Obverse Lincoln Cent was ranked number one in the 1st edition,” Schechter said, and with the addition of the 1975 dime, that cent is ranked number two in the second and third editions. 

“I’m surprised and pleased by how alive this list is and that major changes can occur year-to-year. I take it as a sign that the field of modern coin collecting is really blossoming,” Schechter said.

The Proof 1975-S Roosevelt, No S dime is known by just two examples. The coins were discovered by an anonymous California collector in two of the five Proof sets received from the U.S. Mint. The collector sold both sets to Bloomington, Ill., dealer Fred J. Vollmer, who sold one of the sets in 1978 to an Ohio collector and then sold the second set in 1979.

In 2011, Stack’s Bowers Galleries announce it would be offering at auction the example Vollmer sold in 1979. The first set sold remains in the collection of the Ohio collector.

Coin World chronicled the history of Vollmer’s sales in June 20 and July 18, 2011, articles.

The coin from 1979 that Stack’s Bowers auctioned Aug. 18, 2011, realized $349,600.

100 Greatest U.S. Modern Coins carries a suggested retail price of $29.95 and is to be made available at online and other booksellers.

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