Durring 1999, the general press, including local and national news, radio stations and newspapers, released some inaccurate information about some 50 State quarter error coins known as Rotated Die Errors.
Many reports describe the coins as misstamped, turned, upside down, inverted and so on. Likewise, reports have erroneously stated that the coins are worth in the $500 range and have inaccurately described the method to take the test.
Take the test
Before you go on, first make certain that you indeed do have one of the rotated die errors. Rotated errors were reported for Delaware, Pennsylvania and Connecticut quarters from both Philadelphia and Denver; of course, other State quarters could possibly exhibit the same errors, since this is a form of error that can happen to any coin.
Please follow along with the photographs on this page that demonstrate the test.
Hold the coin in your left hand (by the edges – NEVER handle a potentially valuable coin by its obverse and reverse; it leaves oils that can ruin the coin’s surfaces) so that you’re looking at the obverse with Washington perfectly vertical, right side up.
Your thumb should be near the legend LIBERTY (9 o’clock) and your forefinger should be near the legend IN GOD WE TRUST.
2. Using your other hand, flip the coin end over end. Do not release the coin from your left hand – the coin should spin, and that’s the only thing that should move.
Once you have turned the coin all the way around and you are fully viewing the reverse of the coin, the reverse should be right side up and read normally from left to right.
If the design on the reverse is NOT right side up, or if it is rotated left or right, your coin is a rotated die error. Please note that a rotation of 5 degrees or less is considered within acceptable tolerances.
This coin is normal; its legends read left to right and the image is right side up. If this coin was a rotated die error, the design would be upside down, sideways or even diagonal.