Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Colorful Coin

Under the category of "what the heck is that" is this coin I received in change the other day... The front side (left) is normal, but the back is in color! I didn't think much of it, figured someone was doodling with fingernail polish, and didn't think much of it. I finally dug it out of my change jar yesterday and took a good look at the obverse side. Shown at right, it appears someone took cares to color at least part of the design - trying to stay inside the lines, anyway... I took out my "supermacro" (Canon MP-E 65mm) to document here. The upper images here are at the lowest magnification I can get - about 1:1, or life-size on the sensor. The quarter just quite does not fit in the field of view. But even here you can see that the scene isn't a straight painting, rather it appears to be a multi-layer screen print. Note the screen dots on the details of the woman and what she is carrying - indicative of some sort of a screening or printing procedure.

I was not aware that this was a "thing", but a quick internet search showed them available at Amazon and Ebay for as little as $2 each when bought as a complete set. They appear to be legal tender, which is likely how I received it, when someone needed a quarter and spent this for whatever purchase was needed...

The close-ups here were taken with the same lens at about 3X magnification (scale at bottom is in millimeters. Note especially on the "Pennsylvania" detail, there appears to be a slight registration error of about a half millimeter. At right you can also see the barely-visible E Pluribus Unum through the layer of color at bottom...

All-in-all, an interesting circumstance to run into this item. They do not appear to be common, as after posting last night on FB, most have indicated they've never seen one! One fellow knew someone that collected them, but were new to another half dozen commenters. But they are out there and another reason to pay attention to your money!

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