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Full Red Superb Gem 1909-S VDB Cent

1909-S VDB 1C MS67 Red PCGS. A gorgeous Superb Gem of this famous and coveted series key. Beautiful orange color dominates peripheral areas, while the centers display luminous yellow-gold and olive color. The strike is essentially complete, since areas of sometime weakness, such as the shoulder, the AM in AMERICA, the O in ONE, and Lincoln's cheekbone and jaw do not exhibit the planchet abrasions seen on indifferently struck examples of the type. Coruscating luster dazzles the eye, and both contact and carbon is minimal. A glimpse of prooflike surface, as made, is noted to the east of the E in ONE. Encapsulated in a green label PCGS holder. Even beginning Lincoln Cent collectors have memorized the mintage of the 1909-S V.D.B. Cent: just 484,000 pieces, the lowest of the series, and the lowest of any regular issue Small Cent aside from the 1909-S Indian Cent. The desirability of the issue is increased by its quality; unlike many San Francisco issues from the teens and twenties, the 1909-S V.D.B. tends to come well struck from fresh dies with consistent color. Chief Engraver Charles Barber is often portrayed as a jealous (and even villainous) figure by imaginative numismatic writers, especially when the subject concerned designs from outside artists. Barber is frequently credited with the prompt removal of the 'prominent' V.D.B. initials from the reverse; they returned to the Cent on Lincoln's shoulder in 1918, after Barber's demise.
From The Joshua and Ally Walsh Collection of United States Cents.(Registry values: N7079) (NGC ID# 22B2, PCGS# 2428)

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January, 2006
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