Ed. note: This article is periodically updated to reflect the current price of most valuable coins.
Coleccionistasdemonedas.com estimates the value of the Philadelphia mint John Adams dollar between $6 and $20 for MS grades higher than MS63 and for the Denver John Adams dollar between $5 and $89 for similar grades. As for the San Francisco mint, the John Adams dollar in proof finish at around $300 in PR70.
However, the real valuable specimens are those with errors. In this article we offer a classification of minting errors showing with examples the most valuable errors in the market. For this reason we recommend you to continue reading until the end.
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The history of the John Adams dollar
The John Adams dollar was released on May 17, 2007 along with the dollars of Presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, all belonging to the “Presidential Dollars” series.
What a dollar John Adams looks like
The obverse of the coin features the portrait of President John Adams on the right with his name in capital letters above it and the legend “2nd President 1797-1801” at the bottom of the bust. Its designer was Joel Iskowitz, the engraver of the obverse was Charles L. Vickers – the initials of both can be seen on the President’s shoulders, JI on the left side and CLV on the right.
The reverse features the Statue of Liberty on the left with the value $1.00 and the legend “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” around it starting at 6 o’clock. The engraver/engraver of the reverse was Don Everhart and also has his initials on the reverse under the hand of the Statue of Liberty.
The date (2007), the mintmark letter and the legends “IN GOD WE TRUST” and “E PLURIBUS UNUM” are engraved on the edge of the coin.
At this point it seems pertinent to explain that due to the way of minting the edge the legends can be oriented towards the obverse or towards the reverse. This is what the company PCGS classifies as Position A and Position B.
John Adams dollar features
Diameter: 26.5 millimeters
Weight: 8.10 grams
Composition: 88.5% Copper, 6% Zinc, 3.5% Manganese & 2% Nickel
Rim: incuse letters. 2007 E PLURIBUS UNUM IN GOD WE TRUST (mintmark P, D or S)
How many John adams dollars were manufactured and in what qualities?
The John Adams dollar series were produced in the three most famous mints of the United States of America:
- Mintmark Philadelphia (P): 112,420,000 units.
- Mintmark Denver (D): 112,140,000 regular strike and 895,628 satin finish (special strike) units.
- Mintmark San Francisco (F): In different finishes. 3,965,989 units only in proof quality.
|Philadelphia||112,420,000||MS63-MS66||$6 – $20|
|Philadelphia||895,628||SF64-SF69||$60 – $100|
|Denver||112,140,000||MS63-MS69||$5 – $89|
|Denver||895,628||SF64-SF69||$45 – $95|
|San Francisco||3,965,989||PR68-PR70||$10 – $300|
As you can see in the table the John Adams dollar is not a difficult coin to obtain in high grades for a few hundred dollars, due in part to the high number of pieces produced.
Proof copies of San Francisco were sold in sets of 4 proof copies of the dollars of George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson and James Madison.
The importance of Regular Strikes
The Philadelphia and Denver mints produced coins in MS63 and MS64 average states for circulation of the so-called Regular Strikes.
Due to the large number of units produced and the average grades, the option of looking for MS66 and higher grades is the best one to collect or invest in these pieces.
It is always best to try to get the highest quality John Adams dollar we can afford as they will be scarcer and more valuable pieces.
5 Most important john adams dollar mistakes
By carrying out a more detailed study of the market we find a series of very valuable errors of the John Adams dollar that we need to detect and classify.
Types of relevant errors
Missing Edge Lettering
By mistake some John Adams dollars were released without having the edge of the coin minted (as was the case with its predecessor the George Washington dollar).
We remember that on the edge of these pieces appeared the date, the mint mark and two mottos: “IN GOD WE TRUST” and “E PLURIBUS UNUM”.
Within this error we find John Adams dollars without the minting of the legend “IN GOD WE TRUST”. John Adams dollars with this error are known as Godless dollars or also as dollars with plain edge dollar errors.
The estimate of John Adams minted with this error is 12,000 units.
Doubled Edge Lettering
If in the Godless dollar error there was a lack of edge lettering in the error known as “doubled edge lettering” just the opposite happened, that is to say, that the officials in charge of the minting to make sure that the edges were well minted came to pass some copies twice through the press minting the edge.
It is also known as the typewriter edge error.
Inverted Doubled Edge Lettering
This error occurs as a derivation of the “Doubled Edge Lettering” error, because when the coin was passed twice through the edge engraving machine the legends were engraved in opposite directions, i.e. the first time the coin was positioned with the obverse side up and the second time with the obverse side down, for example.
Lettered Blank Planchet
In this type of error, one of the rarest and scarcest, occurred when the coin went directly through the edge engraving machine and they forgot to mint it in the press with the obverse and reverse dies, so the coin blanks but with a perfectly engraved edge.
What are the most valuable John Adams dollar mistakes?
With the above explained let’s see below some prices reached by the John Adams dollar starting with the highest amounts.
#1 (2007)-? Double Struck on an Aluminum Feeder Finger Fragment – MS64 PCGS – $3,335
Curious mintage or proof of the 2007 John Adams dollar in aluminum that due to its shape it is not possible to detect the mint, nor the year although we know that it must be 2007. It has a weight of 9 grams despite missing more than 60% of the coin.
Auctioned in October 2009 for $3,335 (Source).
(2007)-? Struck Twice on an Aluminum Feeder Finger Fragment – MS64 PCGS – $2,300
Another aluminum example was auctioned in September 2009 and went for $2,300 (Source).
#2 2007-? Plain Edge, Struck Seven Times, Strikes 3 Through 40% Off Center, Missing Edge Lettering – MS66 PCGS – $3,120
In addition to not having an engraved edge, this coin has 7 mintages. A first mintage centered and correct and the remaining six mintages with a 40% displacement without any rotation of dies between the first mintage and the remaining ones.
It reached $3,120 in November 2017 (Source).
#3 Missing Edge Lettering, Double Struck, Second Strike 20% Off Center & 5% – MS66 PCGS – $1,860
This is a double minted piece with offset and poorly trimmed with an unengraved edge, which is why we do not know the mint, which was sold in this same year 2021 for $1,860 (Source).
#4 2007-P Triple Struck, Broadstruck, and Missing Edge Lettering- MS65 PCGS – $1,380
In September 2009 a John Adams dollar from the Philadelphia mint was sold with 3 types of errors:
- Triple mintage (as can be seen in the photo with the detail of the lot that we reproduce below and we point out the triple mintage that is more pronounced in the letters of the legend),
- Broadstruck and
- Missing Edge Lettering.
It was the John Adams dollar 2007 of Philadelphia of the type Position A, according to the classification of PCGS, which was the certifying company.
The price reached for this curious specimen that combined in the same coin 3 different types of errors was $1,380. Here you can see the link to the auction.
#5 (2007)-? Multiple Strikes, 33% Double clip, Missing Edge Lettering – MS63 PCGS – $1,320
This trimmed John Adams dollar has at least 5 mint marks or strikes. For the missing parts it is not possible to determine the mint or the year, although we know for sure that it must be from 2007 for everything we have seen in this article.
It is graded by PCGS as MS63 and was auctioned off at auction for $1,320 in September 2018 (source).
By way of summary:
- Whenever possible look for minting errors of the John Adams dollar as they are the most valued by the market.
- The most common errors are the ones that affect the edge, so if possible look for other extra errors in the coin (double struch, off center, broadstruck,…).
- The John Adams dollar tests made in aluminum are the most valuable.
- Remember that there are three different finishes on the John Adams dollar: Regular, Satin and Proof.
- Due to the low value of the John Adams dollar, we are always looking for the highest quality.
- Based on the PCGS classification many collectors distinguish between the A and B position of the letters engraved on the edge, having two identical John Adams dollar coins but with different orientations of the letters on the edge.