We here are DLRC are happy to offer a large assortment of VAMs in a wide array of condition and price. For the acute dollar collector, introducing VAMS into your collection can make for a long and satisfying collecting experience.
VAM Dollars: A Brief History
Forty years ago, Leroy C. Van Allen and A. George Mallis engaged in extensive research of the variations of dies that were used to strike Silver dollars. Their work focused on Morgan Dollars minted by the U.S. from 1878 to 1921 and Peace Dollars issued from 1921 to 1935. The name “VAM“ is an acronym for “Van Allen-Mallis.”
Silver dollars are created by striking metal blanks with hardened dies containing the mirror image of the desired pattern. Through careful study, slight differences are revealed to identify specific dies that produced the coins. Sometimes the differences occur during the creation of the dies, while other times they are caused by the dies’ use.
The end goal of Van Allen and Mallis’s VAM process was to catalog and number every known die variety by mint mark and date.
Top 100 Morgan VAMs: A Variety Within
In 1996, Dr. Michael Fey and Jeff Oxman published the Top 100 Morgan Dollar varieties which was intended to re-focus collectors and dealers to only the most noteworthy VAMs, to overcome the current problem of “micro-vamming”: the search for and collection of insignificant varieties. Their publication did exactly that and was very successful. Many of these Top 100 VAMs have entered the mainstream collecting of Morgan Dollars, and it has become unheard of to boast a complete Morgan Dollar collection without including the 1882-O/S, Scarface, Hot Lips, and a 1900-O over CC example, along with several other varieties.
Many of the VAMS that we’re pleased to offer now come from the California Collection. This collection was put together by an astute collector of dollars for many years, and we were excited to be offered a small selection of this collection recently. You can find these interesting specimens listed on our website under the VAM tile on the homepage. Happy variety hunting