NGC Slabed Tourist Fake

1808 - Ceylon - 48 Stiver

A Forty Eight Stiver silver coin slabed by NGC. A modern Tourist fake of original silver dump coin struck in Ceylon for circulation.

Denomination48 Stiver
Diameter20.0 mm
Thickness mm
Weight Legal9.05 gms
Weight?.? gms
EdgeCast ?
Mint Tourist Fake ?
1808_48st_ag-dump_obverse 1808_48st_ag-dump_reverse
Pridmore #13; Mitchiner #2203; Krause #77

Obverse : Within a circle of dashes an elephant facing left with a perspective ground. The year 1808 below a line.
Reverse : Within a circle of dashes CEYLONGOVERNMENT preceded by a group of seven dots. 48 ST the value in Stivers at center within a bead circle. Two lines below the T.

The very childish style of elephant makes this very probably a tourist fake. The seven dot symbol, the irregular bead circle and the size, orientation and spacing of the thick lettering around it are all in error. Compare with the very regular and finer text in the genuine silver stivers. Silver specimens like this can only be regarded at most as contemporary forgeries, but even that is very unlikely in this case.

This fake dump appeared in Heritage coin auction being held on location in Long Beach, CA on 2003 September 18-19,

Lot: 11566
Sale: 332 Ceylon
48 Stivers 1808, KM77, MS63 NGC. Popular coinage featuring the
elephant obverse, and very scarce in this quality. Est. 200-275

I could hardly believe the claim that it is certified NGC MS63. Anyone would spot this as a cheap tourist fake. When I phoned and asked for the NGC number on the certificate they told me it maybe a raw coin. Said the coin was at show. I phoned up a Cell phone number they gave me for someone at the show and left a message as to what I think of it. Soon after the fake dump was withdrawn and lot is nolonger online. Invalid Lot number. The lot with image is in the printed Auction catalog. A week later on September 23rd Paul R. Simonetti of Heritage acknowledged my E-mail and informed me the coin had already been withdrawn from the auction. I am glad Heritage acted on my recommendation They had probably been misled by the NGC Slab.

Six months later I was very curious when I saw a listing for a 1808 48 Stivers NGC-MS63 in the 2004 February issue of the "World Coin News". The US-IL dealer was kind enough to send me the scan of coin and the NGC certificate on right. It was the same fake dump.
I don't understand why Heritage didn't inform NGC.

Since I now had the number of NGC certificate, I phoned NGC and requested that it be withdrawn. They claimed they will try recover it. NGC said that this was one that probably slipped through the cracks but was not willing to say who did the grading or when. Talking to NGC at an ANA show they told me that when they are not sure they will ask dealers in South Asian coins like Steve Album. The have clearly had not done so in this case.

I keep track of sale of Ceylon Silver stivers on eBay. In 2002 I was offered a 12% under weight 1808 Silver 96 Stiver which at best was a contempory forgery. It was offered to me at $170 by a dealer who retuned it to distinctivecoins as a forgery after discussion. Distinctivecoins sold it on eBay on 2002 Oct 30th to kristoflaila of Germany for $213. I find that it may not be a coincidence that this same US-IL dealer is involved with the above sale.