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In the Corner with Dan Hughes


Feb 13, 2015

The San Francisco mint, 1917.

Somebody was doing SOMETHING unauthorized with one of the new machines that made half dollars, and there were no clues as to who (or what?) was responsible.  The Secret Service to the rescue...

This is the exciting story of a counterfeiter who didn't really counterfeit - or did he?  See what you think, as you listen to the story of Charlie Butler and the absolutely-perfect fifty-cent pieces he made on the sly.

 

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Paul Taylor
two and a half years ago

fascinating. I had not heard that story before. And you're right, by any normal legal definition he was not counterfeiting. As you point out, he was definitely misappropriating government property. And if he had been printing currency rather than minting silver halves, it is possible that he could have run foul of monetization laws.