RSchwa57's Blog

15 Jul 2022

Intentionally Damaged U.S. Coinage

Coins-United States | RSchwa57

I have always wondered why someone takes the time to intentionally deface any coin or paper money. Are they trying to be artistic? Rebelling against Big Brother? Bored to the extent they need to damage something?

As stated in previous posts, I spend a lot of time CHR. I find the most bizarre cents, nickels, dimes, quarters, and halves TOO.

I save these weird pieces of various metal configuration. I have a set of Lincoln, Jefferson, Roosevelt, Washington, and even Ben that were coated in a red enamel fingernail polish or paint. A set of blue coloring as well.

Another set has 1 hole somewhere drilled into the coin. A set of 2 holes per coin has also been set aside. Keep in mind these coins are only FACE VALUE, mostly modern from the 40's to date.

Anyone collect ROADKILL Coins? I have many, many that were treated to the experience.

Then you get to why did someone intentionally use snipes or a cutting tool to cut, but not remove the entire area cut. It is still attached causing the coin to become 2 daggers looking for a place to cause damage.

I have coins with sodar, all letters but Q counter marked somewhere on the coin, counter sunk quotes, businesses, and names are a few.

Feel free to include the weird things that have somehow found a way into your collection.



Level 4

I had an 1864 2 cent piece once which I sold. (Kinda regret it now) It had two holes, evenly spaced, side to side, and REALLY good details. The holes were obviously punched, NOT drilled. My best guess was that a soldier in the civil war lost a button on his uniform, and used it as a button. Don’t know if that was true, but the guy that bought it really liked that explanation, and actually paid a pretty good premium for it. Should have kept it myself. Would have a least been a great conversation piece.


Level 4

If 2 holes on each side, it was probably a Zinger. A string and a coin. They fiddled with it. Spun it fast. Made it do tricks like a yo yo.


Level 4

I know a certain person who intentionally damages random coins when they're bored. (Me)

AC coin$

Level 6

I have had the experience to see curious details and damages in US coinage and world's currency . But what gets me is coins turned into jewerly .

Long Beard

Level 5

I'll buy the more ornate love tokens if I find them. While some of the numerous hobo nickels are highly collectible, these don't seem to appeal to me as the love tokens. And this I can not explain as they are often equally attractive in personal design. However, as a competing hoarder I would not part with one should I find it.


Level 4

I do find the One-of-a-Kind designs interesting. Nice addition!


Level 6

Loved your blog! Cool stuff indeed! I think it's always fun to find a "damaged" coin and wonder what the heck! Good for you and your "weird" collection. haha ; )


Level 6

I am a fan of chop mark Trade Dollars. The show a huge history to me. Thanks.


Level 5

A few thoughts: 1) Coins with paint might be from vending machines. Some jukebox operators give painted coins to the waitresses to play music occasionally to encourage customers to keep the music going. The painted coins are returned to the waitresses when the coin box is emptied. 2) Drilled coins can be put on necklaces, bracelets or shoe lace as cheap jewelry for children. 3) Some years ago at an ANA coin show, an avid bicycle rider had an exhibit of "roadkill" coins that he had found while riding. I believe it was a prize winner!. 4) When I was a child, I had instructions on how to make a clock with gears made from coins. (Wish I still had it!) This involved using nippers to notch the edge of the coins. None of the above involved coins above face value so end the end they would be returned to circulation. (For us "roll hunters to find.)


Level 4

2 holes at the top and bottom on Buffalo nickels mostly I found were put on a string and I believe they were called Zingers? Kids played with them a lot during the depression. I also have a couple cents that for sure were put in FUSE boxes to keep fuses from blowing in old electrical systems in homes.


Level 7

I just have no interest in damaged coins at all. The only thing that came close was putting quarters on train tracks when we were kids. As far as the rest go. they would not be of interest to me. I don't know why people do these things. They must have some reason!.

I. R. Bama

Level 5

You must have been a rich kid! All we ever put on the tracks was cents!


Level 4

I keep them because I am considered a hoarder.


Level 4

I have not paid much attention to “intentionally” damaged coins, personally. I have seen that counter stamps collecting is a thing. Coins that have certain counter stamps from an organization, group, or destination seems to be a thing some try to collect. Masonic symbols, state outlines, initials, or organizational mascots appear to be the most popular.

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