1902-O VAM-3 (Privately made) Micro O Mint Mark
Discovered by Francis Klaes, June 1963. Known to exist since prior to 1945.
This coin is a Top 100 Morgan VAM.
3(Privately made) III2 · C3a (Small Micro O Tilted Far Right) (181)
Obverse III21– Date at left side of normal lateral position. Broad raised dot at lower inside of ear. Fine scattered raised dots all over obverse,
typical of cast die.
Die markers– Raised diagonal line between UR. Small dot in front of neck one-quarter of way down from jaw-neck junction.
The obverse die copied has been shown to be the VAM 43.
Reverse C3a– Small micro I O mint mark set slightly high and centered with tilt far to right. Rounded design where it meets field.
Three dies copied from 1899 O VAM 6 coin reverse with same characteristics as described for 1896 O VAM 4 micro O,
and same three dies used. Only C3 design type die used for 1902 P, O and S which makes it suspect as counterfeiter’s mistake.
1. The 1902-O VAM-3 is one of four micro o counterfeit coins that have a VAM number.
2. The other three are 1896-O VAM-4, 1900-O VAM-5, 1901-O VAM-42. The 1896, 1900 and 1902 was counterfeited with the same
reverse die. Read the [PCGS announcement that they no longer slab these micro Os as they believe they are counterfeit].
LVA Plate Photos:
Below is an example comparing a micro O and a normal O (from 1899-O coins but having the same sizes). Notice the Micro O is almost round and the normal O is tall and has an almost oval center.
Among the VAM-3 micro os out there, this is the only one identified that has a nice naturally rainbow-toned obverse,
Full Coin Photos
TwoHawks Uncirculated 1902-O VAM-3. Images Photographed by John Baumgart @
These pictures are of the first known uncirculated 1902-O Micro O, graded MS61 (and labeled as a counterfeit) by ICG. This coin was part of a collection located in Idaho from a person who died in 1945.
2 copyrighted© images below on loan to VAMworld courtesy of oldcollectorcoins from a coin of Brian Raines
The total pop numbers of PCGS, NGC,ANACS and ICG are as follows. Note 10 have been bought back at a min.
ICG 6 to date Mar.12 2013