Gerard C. writes: I operate Southwest Texas Gold & Silver Exchange. Yesterday, while looking through a client’s collection i found a large Coronet cent which appears genuine and unaltered dated 1815. Is there a remote possibility that it is authentic? Thank you.
There are no known U.S. cents dated 1815, there were no copper planchets available for striking. Clever alterations with the Coronet type are commonly made from 1845 and 1816 examples. The 1845 alteration always has too much space between the “8” and”5″. The 1816 is made by chasing the “6” with a graver into a “5”.
Of course, you can always have the coin authenticated at the grading services or the ANA (see the CoinSite Links Page ). There has been pretty strange stuff showing up lately, so you never know. Good luck!