United States Error Coins

Error coins are a fascinating subset of numismatics. While most coin collectors prize mint-condition coins, collectors who specialize in errors often favor coins that show the wear and tear of daily life. Most error coins are destroyed by the Mint when they are found at the facility, but some manage to escape to general circulation by accident. Occasionally, they are pocketed by unscrupulous Mint employees.

Some of the most prominent forms of error coins include double die, cracked die, off center, clipped planchet, and blundered die. As the name suggests, the double-die error is caused when the repeated strikes of the die onto the blank are not perfectly aligned between each strike. Most commonly, this error is seen on mint marks or dates. Cracked dies will transfer their cracks on to the blank when striking, which results in slivers of coin that remain blank while surrounded by the design of the coin. More severe versions of this are known as cuds, referring to a section of die that has fully broken off rather than just cracked. This results in a small, typically circular region of blank coin on an otherwise fine copy.

Off-center coins tend to be very aesthetically desirable to collectors, since they result in unusual items. They occur when the blank is not moved into position correctly on the press. Clipped planchet errors are created when there is something wrong with the blank itself as opposed to the die or the alignment. Finally, blundered die errors have arguably the most crossover with non-error collecting. These are coins where there was an error on the actual die itself, such as with the error 1982-P dime. These dimes were minted without the Philadelphia Mint mark because it was missing from the die.


Quick Facts

  • Most error coins tend to be worth many times their face value, averaging at least $20 to $50. This amount increases with the denomination and increases again if the error type is clipped planchet or off center
  • A prominent blundered die error is the 1975 missing S proof Roosevelt dime. Only two copies are known to exist, and one of them sold for $350,000 at an auction in 2011
  • As technology has improved, the rate of error coins slipping out to the public has not decreased. Many errors can be found among state quarters and proof sets

Recommended Items at Auction

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2 Error Lincoln Pennies
Oct 19, 6:00 PM CDT
2 Error Lincoln Pennies
by Easterly Auction Company
Est: $0- $0
$73 Bids
2 Error Lincoln Pennies
Oct 22, 6:00 PM CDT
2 Error Lincoln Pennies
by Easterly Auction Company
Est: $0- $0
$52 Bids
1856 Three Cent Silver Type 3 Mint Error Dye Cast??
Oct 19, 5:00 PM EDT
1856 Three Cent Silver Type 3 Mint Error Dye Cast??
by Richard L. Edwards Auctioneer
Est: $1- $5,000
$52 Bids
Franklin Mint House of Faberge 24 Carat Gold Imperial Jeweled Egg Chess Set
Oct 24, 7:00 PM BST
Franklin Mint House of Faberge 24 Carat Gold Imperial Jeweled Egg Chess Set
by James Auctioneers London
Est: £500- £750
£5001 Bid
Colonial Currency, Virginia October 16, 1780 $100 Type with Printed Back VF
Oct 23, 9:00 AM PDT
Colonial Currency, Virginia October 16, 1780 $100 Type with Printed Back VF
by Early American History Auctions
Est: $500- $600
$3750 Bids
1966 Peanuts Error Lunchbox with Thermos
Nov 08, 6:00 PM EST
1966 Peanuts Error Lunchbox with Thermos
by Caswell Prewitt Realty, INC
Est: $0- $0
$50 Bids
Collectible MISCUT ERROR US $1 one dollars silver certificate blue seal 1935 D series
Oct 19, 7:00 PM EDT
Collectible MISCUT ERROR US $1 one dollars silver certificate blue seal 1935 D series
by Omni Auction Corp
Est: $70- $110
$300 Bids
6 Error One Cent Clipped Planchets.
Oct 20, 5:00 PM EDT
6 Error One Cent Clipped Planchets.
by Richard L. Edwards Auctioneer
Est: $1- $5,000
$10 Bids
1892-CC MORGAN ICG MS-64
Oct 26, 11:00 AM EDT
1892-CC MORGAN ICG MS-64
by Silver City Auctions
Est: $2,500- $2,800
$100 Bids
A Mint Error Off Center Lincoln Cent
Oct 17, 1:00 PM EDT
A Mint Error Off Center Lincoln Cent
by Designer Homes of Central Florida
Est: $35- $350
$350 Bids
A Mint Error Off Center Lincoln Cent
Oct 17, 1:00 PM EDT
A Mint Error Off Center Lincoln Cent
by Designer Homes of Central Florida
Est: $35- $350
$350 Bids
A Mint Error Off Center Lincoln Cent
Oct 17, 1:00 PM EDT
A Mint Error Off Center Lincoln Cent
by Designer Homes of Central Florida
Est: $35- $350
$350 Bids
1962-D Franklin Half Dollar Clipped Planchet Error Coin
Oct 19, 8:00 AM PDT
1962-D Franklin Half Dollar Clipped Planchet Error Coin
by BK Auctions
Est: $60- $70
$10 Bids
Small bag of MINT ERROR - Off Center Lincoln Memorial Cents ( 3 pcs)
Oct 22, 7:00 PM EDT
Small bag of MINT ERROR - Off Center Lincoln Memorial Cents ( 3 pcs)
by Big Dog Auctions
Est: $0- $0
$10 Bids
1984-D/D RPM Lincoln Memorial Cent - MINT ERROR - CHOICE UNC!!
Oct 23, 7:00 PM EDT
1984-D/D RPM Lincoln Memorial Cent - MINT ERROR - CHOICE UNC!!
by Big Dog Auctions
Est: $0- $0
$10 Bids
Lincoln Cent - Mint Error Off-Center
Oct 22, 6:00 PM CDT
Lincoln Cent - Mint Error Off-Center
by J & S Coins and Bullion
Est: $0- $0
$40 Bids
2007 Washington Dollar ICG MS66 Mint Error Missing Edge Lettering
Oct 19, 5:00 PM EDT
2007 Washington Dollar ICG MS66 Mint Error Missing Edge Lettering
by Richard L. Edwards Auctioneer
Est: $1- $5,000
$10 Bids
INDIAN CENT BLANK PLANCHET ERROR
Nov 01, 12:30 PM EDT
INDIAN CENT BLANK PLANCHET ERROR
by Museum of Culture and Arts, Inc
Est: $80- $300
$130 Bids

Sellers Who Sell United States Error Coins


Omni Auction Corp

Omni Auction Corp

Richard L. Edwards Auctioneer

Richard L. Edwards Auctioneer

Designer Homes of Central Florida

Designer Homes of Central Florida