Hey everyone on CCF,
This Jefferson nickel
sent me down the Pareidolia
rabbit hole and I jumped on in, head first.
I was looking for RPMs with some older nickels I had saved from a while back. I saw this one with some arcing under the "D" and put it under my microscope to take a closer look. I started to notice that what looked like an "S" mintmark.
I used Microsoft Paint 3D to utilize the editing features. I wanted to get the correct sized mintmarks for 1954. I had the "D" with the coin in question and was able to find a nice "S" in the same stash of nickels. I used Paint 3D to overlay the photos to get the right sizes of mintmarks. To note, the "S" is quite larger than the "D". I then started with a blank photo of just the "D" and started marking random marks where I saw what could be features or even PMD
(photo 4). Since I had the correct sizing, I started to see if the "S" would fit anywhere (this is where things really got interesting). I was able to use the same "S" mintmark and it started lining up all over the place with little markings. Most of these line up perfect with the arcs, edges, and ends the "S". Without changing the sizing, all I did is rotate and move the "S" around. I kept on finding more and more places. I thought (at first) it was only going to be 3 or 4 places, but I have lined up over 10 places so far.
This got me thinking. With the San Francisco mint knowing that they were not making coins past 1954, the Denver mint got all the San Francisco dies to reuse if they could. They had to remove the "S" and just replace it with a "D" (this is why the 1955-D/S OMM Jefferson nickel
exists). One idea I had was if the San Francisco mint had that 1 die that they would use for practice or training purposes. The Denver mint put their "D" onto it (possibly not knowing how many times the San Francisco mint had reused it) and went ahead and used it. They would have had to use this die in the later stages of the 1954 manufacturing, because the Denver mint would have had to receive the die, repurpose it, and then use it before the start of the 1955 inventory being produced. This is just one possible idea that popped into my head.
If you would like pictures of the markings I used to consider the "S" lined up, please let me know. I can show which markings I used with arrows or something else along that line.
Like I said, dived in head first. With all of this being said, I would like the opinions or ideas from CCF.
Also, just an FYI, these photos are of the actual coin(s) I used and I have not added or changed any markings. I have taken all these photos and I give permission for anyone to use them to reproduce the findings of this post.
Thanks for everyone that takes a look.
Next picture is of the overlay of the first 2 pictures
Next picture is with the misc. markings
Next picture is on the stickers I used in Paint 3D
Next 10 pictures are of examples on the "S" mintmark lining up in different locations