How and Why Were “Privately Made” VAMs Produced ?


The counterfeiters fabricated transfer dies from genuine coins.
The die-struck counterfeits contained the proper amount of silver and were of high quality.



It appears that they were produced prior to the end of World War 1.

They circulated heavily as genuine coins. Most known examples are well-worn.

Specimens grading EF-AU are very rare.



At the time of production, the free-market cost of the silver content was less than 45 cents.



At least 100,000 were produced.

It is possible that millions of them may have entered circulation.

This was a major operation and it required a sophisticated group.



It was basically a perfect crime, completely unknown to the general public until 2005.

Even now, most people are not aware of the scale of what transpired.

The perpetrators were never caught or even identified (more on that later).