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Coin and Paper Money Collecting/mint design on 1954 s wheat penny


1954 s mint wheat penny
1954 s mint wheat penn  
I would like to know the explanation of why the "s" on my 1954s mint wheat penny looks like it hasa fox tail trying to touch the number 5 in the date? Is this common and would you know the value? Pictures attached. Thank you.


This is a fairly well known mint mark minor error, sometimes called the "San Jose" cent. It is a result of a die chip (break). They sell from time to time on Ebay for $2 to $5. This specific date and mint mark has a number of minor date, mint mark and letter errors in "LIBERTY". Things like clogged digits, letters and doubled mint marks exist in significant numbers. Most all of the sell for under $10 in BU condition.

For examples, see: and

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Ronald Fern


I can answer most all questions relating to US coins, tokens, and currency. I'm not strong on world coins or ancients. Primary field of expertise is errors and varieties. Over 55 years experience in coin collecting. Part time dealer since 1976. Employed by McDonnell Douglas/Boeing for over 34 years as an Industrial Engineer/Technical Specialist before retiring in 2002.


Worked weekends for "Lonesome" John in the late 1960's to mid 1970's processing error coins, packaging, and preparing orders. Worked with John Devine and Fred Weinberg on several California Error A Rama's in the early 1970's. Served as display judge at annual Error-A-Rama coin shows. Opened and operated mail order coin business DBA "CAL ERRORS" in 1976. Contributor to Alan Herbert's "Official Price Guide To Mint Errors" and Fivaz/Stanton "Cherrypickers' Guide". Worked Saturdays at Huntington Beach Coin Exchange 1980-1999. Had table and sold coins at a number of coin and gun shows in So CA, AZ and NV. Sell coins, tokens and currency on Facebook. Past "Errorscope" Editor. Presently CONECA Examiner.


Errorscope, Numismatic News, Civil War Token Journal, Error and Variety News

AA Degree LBCC pre Engineering, 1964 BS Degree CSULB Ind Technology, 1968

Awards and Honors
1st Place EAR Trophy for Civil War Token Errors, NLG Author of Year Award for best monthly coin column "Error News and Views" in small Numismatic paper, owned and published by Ray Anthony.

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