Draped Bust Dollar Replicas



Not all copies of coins are deceptive. Many people like to collect replicas, which faithfully (or not) mirror the design of the originals. By law in the U.S., replicas made in the U.S. or imported into the U.S. have to be marked with "COPY" or similar words in large enough letters on the replica's obverse or reverse.

Collecting replicas is a bit like collecting posters of expensive oil paintings. You obtain the same beauty at a small fraction of the cost. It can also be interesting to collect replicas along with authentic coins, as variations on a theme.

The following are same-size replicas of Bust dollars that I've picked up.













National Collector's Mint Proof













This is the best of the Bust dollar replicas, a proof replica from National Collector's Mint of Port Chester, NY. Liberty's face and bust looks very much like that on authentic Bust dollars. The frosted devices and mirrored fields are well done as well. This replica is made of .999 silver and weighs 1.0 troy oz. (31.1g), compared with about 90 percent silver and 10 percent copper and 27.0g for the originals. The edge is stamped ".999 Fine Silver."

National Collector's Mint has also made the same replica as a silver-plated proof. Last time I checked, these replicas weren't among the items currently for sale at their Web site.

National Collector's Mint makes many other coin replicas and markets them on TV and in magazine ads. Unfortunately, its marketing practices are less than straightforward. It doesn't call its products replicas in its ads, which potentially can cause unsuspecting novices to believe they're buying authentic coins.













Gallery Mint Museum Proof













Here's another proof replica of the 1804 dollar, from Gallery Mint Museum of Eureka Springs, AR. Liberty's nose and chin are a little too pointed, and her bust is a bit elongated, but otherwise this is a high-quality replica. Unlike the National Collector's Mint proof replica, it is the same weight and alloy as the original coins, and the edges are lettered like the originals.












Gallery Mint Museum Uncirculated













Here's another version of the same replica from Gallery Mint Museum. "We made this reproduction to illustrate what the 1804 dollar would look like if it had actually been produced in 1804 as a circulating coin," says Gallery Mint Museum at its Web site. "Unlike the proof, this piece is struck out of collar and displays clear edge lettering, full denticles, no rim, and is slightly larger than the proof struck in collar. Other differences include a different 4 punch, and a full upper hair curl."













Tin Replica













This is a fairly schlocky replica, crudely made and very lightweight. It consists primarily of tin alloyed with a small amount of lead, according to an x-ray elemental analysis that I had done of this replica along with many of the counterfeits on the previous page of this Web site. It weighs just 16.1g. I have no idea who made it.



No-Motto Replica
    Here's a strange replica, with its most noticeable characteristic the missing "LIBERTY" motto on the obverse. This specimen has a "COPY" countermark on the reverse, but I've seen the same replica without one. This piece was made in China. It's cast, made of some white metal, has a reeded edge, and weighs 18.4g.    

Silver Round













Here's a Bust dollar silver round, a dateless replica consisting of 1 troy oz. (31.1g) of .999 fine silver, as the reverse indicates. Silver rounds of coins, as with the U.S. Mint's American Silver Eagle series, are an attractive way to collect silver bullion. A number of manufacturers have made silver rounds of Bust dollars and other coins over the years.

With this particular silver round, however, Liberty's face and bust are crudely rendered, making her look somewhat brutish. See the previous page of this Web site, on counterfeits, for a picture of a deceptive effort to pan off an altered silver round as an authentic Bust dollar.

Altered, counterfeit, and ugly Bust dollars aren't all you need to beware of. You also need to look out for overgrading.




Draped Bust


Anne's Life

Anne's Death

1804 Dollar


Dollar Set






Other Images

More Info

Other glomworthy coins:

Oldest Coins

 Athenian Owls

Alexander the Great Coins

Medusa Coins

Thracian Tetradrachms

House of Constantine

Draped Bust Coins

Saint-Gaudens Double Eagles

Coin sites:
Coin Collecting: Consumer Protection Guide
Glomming: Coin Connoisseurship
Bogos: Counterfeit Coins

© 2014 Reid Goldsborough

Note: Any of the items illustrated on these pages that are in my possession are stored off site.