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Do You Know How Much Your Dollars are Worth?

NSDR Journal

VOL. XXV, No. 1

Spring 2007


Do You Know How Much Your Dollars are Worth?

By Michael S. Fey, Ph.D.


It’s been a mere decade since the Top 100 Morgan Dollar Varieties: The VAMKeys was published.  On page 1, Jeff Oxman and I wrote, “Welcome to the Revolution.”

For those of you who jumped on the train, you have likely enriched your knowledge of Morgan and Peace dollars varieties, had a little fun, and significantly enriched your pockets as well.  That’s not bad for a small investment in a book.  For those of you who missed the train, it’s not too late.  I believe we’re sill in our infancy of silver dollar variety growth and market development.

Try to think back as to why you got into this business in the first place.  Was it for fun?  Did you want to learn?  Did you want to make money?  If you haven’t yet fully explored the silver dollar variety revolution, perhaps you should buy and read the books that your customers are reading.  It will cost you far more in lost profits in the long run if you don’t.

Don’t have enough time to look at your dollars?  Don’t fret, your customers would be happy to look at your coins for you…and relieve you of those XF $5000.00 coins for $25-$40.

The truth is that there is far more to collecting Morgan and Peace dollars than most dealers know…and even more than is published in most of the books you see.  One key to increase your fun and profits in the hobby is by acquiring as much knowledge about the series as you can.  Knowledge can be acquired through specialty books on silver dollars.  Some of those in print that you should read and have in your library are:  The 4th Edition of the big VAM Encyclopedia, the Top 100, 1878 8TFs, the Top 50 Peace, the 1879 s Reverse of 1878, Fun with 1921 D, and the latest new and interesting area to explore, “Elite” Clashed Morgan Dies.

Books currently out-of-print include the Hot 50 and the 1878 7/8 TFs.

There are also several VAM update supplements and monographs offered by Leroy Van Allen that you should consider getting.  You should subscribe to newsletters such as the Top 100 Insights & Value Guide and VAMView.  I recommend you join the Society of Silver Dollar Collectors (SSDC) at, and visit and web sites regularly.

If you don’t have the time, patience, or interest in learning all there is about Morgan and Peace dollars varieties yourself, offer an invitation to your favorite expert to work with you on a fair and equitable basis.

I routinely work with scores of dealers on a 50:50 split of the profit (less the base price of the coin) to identify, price, and in many cases help market the better ones.  I do this through RCI’s Lightening Sales on a quarterly basis, and through RCI’s Spring Ultra Rarities auctions.

I routinely receive packages of circulated and MS 1878 Morgan dollars to review, attribute and price the premium varieties.  I usually return coins within a day or two.  I often call to discuss important rarities, then buy/sell/place with my clients.  My aim is to make everyone happy.

I also worked as a paid consultant on two large silver dollar hoards to help the owners realize far more than they would otherwise.

I think you will find that most collectors would jump at the chance to work with you.  I encourage it as long as they are knowledgeable, responsive, professional and have integrity.

Knowledge is King!

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