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The Numismatic Bibliomania Society is a non-profit association devoted to the study and enjoyment of numismatic literature. For more information please see our web site at


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To join, print the application and return it with your check to the address printed on the application. Print/Digital membership is $40 to addresses in the U.S., and $60 elsewhere. A digital-only membership is available for $25. For those without web access, write to:

Charles Heck, Treasurer
Numismatic Bibliomania Society
P. O. Box 2058,
Bluffton, SC


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Sale Calendar

March 6, 2021 KOLBE-FANNING

Watch here for updates!

Content presented in The E-Sylum is not necessarily researched or independently fact-checked, and views expressed do not necessarily represent those of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society.


Wayne Homren 2017-03-15 full New subscribers this week include: David Buehler, courtesy Eric Holcomb; Larry Jewett, courtesy of Jeff Starck; Timothy Shellenberger, courtesy of Jonas Denenberg; Stanley Benedict, Michael Kodysz, and George Di Russo. Welcome aboard! We now have 6,607 subscribers.

Thank you for reading The E-Sylum. If you enjoy it, please send me the email addresses of friends you think may enjoy it as well and I'll send them a subscription. Contact me at anytime regarding your subscription, or questions, comments or suggestions about our content.

This week we open with a numismatic literature sale, five new books, a new periodical, the loss of a hobby stalwart, updates from the Newman Numismatic Portal, and more.

Other topics this week include Food Stamp credit tokens, Numismatic News, Charles Barber, R. S. Yeoman, F.C.C. Boyd, R. W. McLachlan, Mormon paper money, collector's marks, upcoming auctions, the 1822 Half Eagle, an 1862 Lincoln Indian Peace Medal, a holocaust survivor's medal, and Black American numismatics.

To learn more about the Richard Margolis library, trade tokens of Newfoundland, Joe Levine, a counterstamped Conder token, silvered 1896 Indian cents, communion tokens, Mary Lannin, engraver Henry W. Page, Franklin Cents, and how Morgan Dollars became Indian Rupees, read on. Have a great week, everyone!

Wayne Homren
Editor, The E-Sylum


In March Kolbe & Fanning will offer highlights from the numismatic library of dealer Richard Margolis. Here's the announcement. -Editor

Richard Margolis Library Sale March 6

K-F Margolis sale cover Kolbe & Fanning Numismatic Booksellers are proud to announce that we will be offering highlights from the important library of numismatic literature belonging to Richard Margolis at auction on Saturday, March 6, 2021. Richard Margolis was a highly esteemed dealer in world coins and an indefatigable researcher. Well known to many as the long-time organizer of the New York International Numismatic Convention, he was also heavily involved in the International Association of Professional Numismatists. His library covers the coins, medals and paper money of all times, but is especially important for numismatic works on the period of the French and American Revolutions. The 539-lot sale features books, auction catalogues and periodicals, as well as separate sections on numismatic art and archival materials.

Some highlights of the sale include:

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Leonardo Agostini's 1686 work on engraved gems French governmental monetary system publications
Lots 1 and 97

Lot 1: Matthew Boulton's set of Leonardo Agostini's 1686 work on engraved gems

Lot 97: an extraordinary collection of 71 different French governmental publications printed during the Revolutionary period relating to the monetary system

biography of  David d'Angers Schaumünzen des Hauses Hohenzollern
Lots 111 and 188

Lot 111: Henry Jouin's magnificent two-volume 1878 biography and study of medallic artist David d'Angers

Lot 188: the massive and superbly illustrated 1901 Schaumünzen des Hauses Hohenzollern, compiled by Julius Menadier

continuation to Van Loon on Dutch medals Gabinet medalów polskich
Lots 274 and 285

Lot 274: a complete set, in ten parts, of the scarce continuation to Van Loon on Dutch medals, Beschrijving der Nederlandsche historie-penningen...

Lot 285: the very rare Gabinet medalów polskich, complete in four volumes, by Edwarda Hr. Raczynski, a classic of Polish numismatics

The Coinage of Scotland Mitchell-Boulton Correspondence on Coinage for South Carolina
Lots 290 and 311

Lot 290: a large-paper set of The Coinage of Scotland, by Edward Burns

Lot 311: the very rare Mitchell-Boulton Correspondence, 1787–1792, Relative to Coinage for South Carolina and the United States

British auction catalogues from the library of Leonard Forrer Counterfeit Reports
Lots 456 and 482

Lot 456, et seq.: handsomely bound volumes of classic British auction catalogues, primarily by Sotheby's, from the library of Leonard Forrer: several lots feature similar volumes, with most of the catalogues priced and named

Lot 482: a complete set of the Counterfeit Reports published by the International Bureau for the Suppression of Counterfeit Coins.

Over the past half century, Kolbe & Fanning have handled an exceptionally wide variety of numismatic works, from the vital to inconsequential, the magnificent to the mundane. It is safe to say that the Richard Margolis Library stands out as one of the most interesting and intriguing libraries it has been our pleasure to bring to market.

The printed catalogue of the Margolis Library will be mailed to all active customers on our mailing list shortly. As international mail speeds have been slowed by the Corona situation, we encourage our international clients to consult the electronic catalogue in case their printed catalogue does not arrive promptly. A PDF of the printed catalogue has been posted to our main website at for those who prefer that format. Bids placed via post, email, fax or phone must be received by March 5, the day before the sale, in order for them to be processed. Advance absentee bids may also be placed at any time online at Live internet bidding will be available during the sale itself through the same platform.

Kolbe & Fanning Numismatic Booksellers LLC is a licensed and bonded auction firm in the State of Ohio. For more information, please see the Kolbe & Fanning website at or email David Fanning at a href=""> To register for the sale, go to We look forward to your participation.

Archives of Augustin Dupré From the Archives of Augustin Dupré
In conjunction with our sale of the Richard Margolis Library, Kolbe & Fanning are proud to team up with John Kraljevich Americana to offer a select number of items from the archives of the illustrious French engraver Augustin Dupré, whose works include the famous Libertas Americana medal. This fixed-price offering includes two original letters published in Loubat's Medallic History of the United States of America.

To view the fixed price list, see:
From the Augustin Dupré Archives (

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
RICHARD MARGOLIS (1931-2018) (

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Whitman has published a new edition of Dave Bowers' book on U.S. gold eagles. Here's the press release. -Editor

GB-GoldEagles-2nd-edition_Cover Whitman Publishing announces the release of the updated second edition of A Guide Book of Gold Eagle Coins, volume 24 in its popular Bowers Series of numismatic titles. The 448-page book will be available March 2, 2021. It continues in the tradition of the Guide Book of Morgan Silver Dollars and other best-selling "Official Red Book" guides. The full-color volume will be available online (including at and in bookstores and hobby shops nationwide for $29.95.

As he did in the first edition, author and numismatic researcher Q. David Bowers combines the history of America's $10 gold coins (minted 1795 to 1933) with coin-by-coin analysis, pricing in multiple grades, auction records, grading guides, and collecting tips to help enthusiasts build and enjoy their own set of gold eagles.

Bowers, nicknamed the "Dean of American Numismatics," has been researching and writing about U.S. gold coins for more than 60 years. He has studied numismatic catalogs, periodicals, and books on gold coins. More importantly, he has personally examined hundreds of thousands of gold coins, many of them in the process of cataloging the most famous coin collections ever to cross an auction block.

Gold-Eagles-2nd-ed_pg006 Gold-Eagles-2nd-ed_pg023

Today these classic American gold coins have become highly popular and accessible for collectors, thanks in part to an influx of gold eagles returning from Europe since the 1950s, and the Internet making it easier than ever to find and purchase rare coins.

Bowers wrote A Guide Book of Gold Eagle Coins for collectors who want to create a valuable and attractive collection. The fully revised and updated second edition contains pricing for every gold eagle by year and mintmark, from the 1790s to 1933. Bowers includes updated details on rarity, advice on collectible grades, market analysis, and more than 50 years of auction records.

The second edition also includes new historical images of the U.S. Mint's gold coin production, as well as close-up photographs of flaws, such as lintmarks and copper spots, that can detract from a coin's grade and value.

Gold-Eagles-2nd-ed_pg338 Gold-Eagles-2nd-ed_pg400

Readers will find engaging and informative stories of some of the Philadelphia Mint's earliest coinage, the famed Turban Head eagles of 1795 to 1804; the long-running series of Liberty Head eagles, minted for nearly 70 years from the 1830s to the early 1900s; and the innovative Indian Head eagles of 1907 to 1933. Bowers also explores famous shipwrecks and hoards of gold coins, the holdings of the National Numismatic Collection, the coins owned by King Farouk of Egypt, the coverage of gold eagles in price guides going back to the 1930s, and other fascinating side journeys.

Because Whitman Publishing is the Official Supplier of the American Numismatic Association, ANA members received 10% off when ordering the book directly from the publisher. ANA members can also borrow it for free from the Association's Dwight N. Manley Numismatic Library.

A Guide Book of Gold Eagle Coins, 2nd edition. By Q. David Bowers; foreword by Douglas Winter.
ISBN 0794848370.
Softcover, 6 x 9 inches, 448 pages, full color.
Retail $29.95 U.S.


RENAISSANCE OF AMERICAN COINAGE: Wizard Coin Supply is the official distributor for Roger Burdette's three volume series that won NLG Book of the Year awards for 2006, 2007 and 2008. Contact us for dealer or distributor pricing at .


Token Publishing is offering a new book: A Guide to the Guinea 1663 to 1813. -Editor

Guide to the Guinea book cover A Guide to the Guinea
Roderick A. Farey

Available now! The definitive guide to one of Britain's most famous coins! Covering the history of the Guinea from its beginnings in the reign of the newly restored monarch Charles II to its demise as a circulating coin and replacement by the modern sovereign in the time of George III, this book will tell you all you need to know about the "golden guinea" and all its varieties. A separate eight page Price Guide to the Guinea is also included with the book.

Guide to the Guinea sample pages1
Guide to the Guinea samples pages 2

For more information, or to order, see:
A Guide to the Guinea (

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A new book on Food Stamp Credit Tokens (also called 'Change Tokens') has been published. Congratulations to the authors! A tough subject to tackle. -Editor

Food Stamp Credit Tokens book cover Food Stamp Credit Tokens, by Buckner Creel and John Ostendorf, is the first reference book on food stamp credit tokens in about 40 years. This reference book has over 500 pages of information with over 9,500 listings from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Also included is the most information published to date on various manufacturers with photographs of stock reverses, including sub-varieties.

Food stamp credit tokens became a necessity during periods in which the U.S. government did not allow merchants to give change for their customers who paid with food stamps. The lowest denomination food stamp was 50 cents (later one dollar), so merchants had to fill the gap in order to provide correct change to their customers. Merchants used various means to provide change such as credit slips, scrip, punch cards, and tokens. Tokens became a popular means to provide change inexpensively while also providing advertising for the merchant. Most food stamp tokens were made of plastic by a few manufacturers that dominated the trade; however, food stamp tokens were also made of aluminum, brass, wood, and fiber.

Most food stamp credit tokens were issued in the 1970s; however, this book also discusses and lists food stamp tokens from prior periods of issuance and explores the EBT/SNAP tokens that are issued today, mostly for use in farmers' markets. This book will be a "must own" for any collector serious about food stamp credit tokens. Food Stamp Credit Tokens is now available for $65.66 plus shipping at Just go to and type in "Food Stamp Credit Tokens".

For more information, or to order, see:
Food Stamp Credit Tokens (

To read earlier E-Sylum articles on the topic, see:


Eric Leighton of Nova Scotia has published a new book on the trade tokens of Newfoundland, Labrador, and Prince Edward Island. This article is republished here with permission from Canadian Coin News. Thanks. -Editor

Trade Tokens of Newfoundland etc book cover Nova Scotia collector, researcher and author Eric Leighton has published a limited-edition reference book for Newfoundland and Labrador plus Prince Edward Island tokens.

The 126-page hardcover book, The Trade Tokens of Newfoundland and Labrador & Prince Edward Island, is more than six years in the making.

Following the seven-page introduction, the book includes a checklist and index for both provinces' tokens issued between 1867 and 2020. Each listing also includes a historical account with photographs, details of the tokens' size, shape and composition plus any new research.

A Fellow of the Canadian Numismatic Research Society, Leighton illustrates every trade token, including new additions with varieties, in colour.

The Newfoundland and Labrador section includes 63 pages while the Prince Edward Island tokens comprise 34 pages.

The books are available for $44.95 (plus shipping, which is $20 within Canada).

Eric Leighton adds:

"Cost for the book is $55 US at the current rate of Exchange, including postage."

For more information or to buy a book, contact Leighton at

To read the complete article, see:
Newfie, P.E.I. tokens detailed in new book (

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A press release from the Banque de France announces a new book on emergency money in France during WWII. Here's a Google translation. Found via News & Notes from the Society of Paper Money Collectors (Volume VI, Number 33, February 2, 2021). -Editor

Billets en guerre book cover "War Notes" by Jean-Claude Camus

Preface by François Villeroy de Galhau, Governor of the Banque de France

Unpublished documents from the collections of the Banque de France

This is a still unseen story from Seconde World War which is told in this book. That battles where banknotes clash of all the belligerents: invasion tickets imposed by the German army, relief tickets and reserve prepared by the Banque de France, banknotes of the free French to reconquer the territory, American banknotes from the Normandy landings then the Liberation ...

Billets en guerre sample pages1

This vast panorama composed of more than 200 images deciphers the strategies of the Banque de France, Roosevelt, Churchill and De Gaulle for the mastery of cash, both the sinews of war and proclamation of political sovereignty. Enriched with documents from the United States and England, this book provides a information and images essential to understanding military issues and monetary policy of the last great world conflict.

Billets en guerre sample pages2

Jean-Claude Camus is responsible for the numismatic collections of the service of Historical heritage and Archives of the Banque de France

To read the complete press release, see:
« Billets en Guerre » de Jean-Claude Camus (

For more information, or to order, see:
Jean-Claude Camus Billets en guerre 1938-1948 (


Timothy Shellenberger submitted this invitation to his new newsletter, The Loupe. Good luck! See the link below to subscribe. -Editor

The Loupe Issue 2 A New Weekly Numismatic Newsletter!

On January 26, the first issue of my weekly numismatic newsletter kicked off! As a numismatist like you, I understand how important it is to be continuously learning about all the different aspects of the hobby. To help you keep on learning, I decided to create my own weekly newsletter, delivered straight to your inbox! Each issue includes a spotlight on a United States type coin, a short profile on a Chief engraver, the latest numismatic news, silver coin melt values, and even a special "Guess the Grade" segment. And best of all, it's free to sign up!

The Loupe is the official publication of Numismastery, a free online resource for beginner collectors who need help setting foot into the hobby. Numismastery is also a relatively new site, so we are still working on adding more articles and courses for you to explore. Be sure to stay tuned, because we are planning on adding much more tools and resources to the website in the near future.

Signing up for The Loupe and using Numismastery's resources are completely free, so what is there to lose? To join the email list for the Loupe, click the provided link, which will take you to our newsletter website. From there, you can plug in your email, or create an account on the website to have access to the newsletter archives. Thanks for considering, and stay safe!

To visit The Loupe newsletter website, see:

To visit the Numismastery website, see:

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We lost another hobby stalwart this week - medal dealer Joe Levine. He was a member of my Northern Virginia numismatic social group Nummis Nova, and will be greatly missed. Born April 15, 1940, he was 80 years old. Here's Pete Smith's entry for Joe on his American Numismatic Biographies book. -Editor

Joe Levine interview Born in Lock Haven, Pennsylvania. Received B.S. from Lehigh University in 1962, LL.B. from George Washington University in 1965, LL.M. from Georgetown University in 1966 and MBA from American University in 1969. He taught as assistant professor of law at the American University in Washington, D. C. Married to Alice H. Hawes October 15, 1988. He has a daughter from a previous marriage.

Owner of Presidential Coin and Antique Company of Alexandria, Virginia, established in 1971. They joined with Bowers and Merena for the sale of the Julian Leidman and David Dreyfuss collections in 1986. Levine and Presidential conducted 83 auction sales 1969 through 2010.

Levine was on the board of directors of TAMS and president 1989 to 1990. He was honored by TAMS with one of their presidential medals. He served as vice president of the Civil War Token Society. He was a member of the 1981, 1985, 1989, 1993, 1997, 2001 and 2005 Official Inaugural Medal Committees. He is a member of the ANA, ANS and other collector organizations. Received the Medal Collectors of America Carl W. A. Carlson Award in 2000.

He has contributed over 20 articles to The Numismatist. Co-author of "Exonumia Notebook," a monthly feature in The Numismatist. Author of Collectors Guide to Presidential Inaugural Medals and Memorabilia issued in 1981 at $8.95. He has also been a contributor to a number of books on tokens and medals.

To read the complete article, see:
Henry Joseph Levine (

Joe Levine TAMS Medal Levine Inaugural Medals book cover
Joe's TAMS Medal (courtesy Pete Smith) and his book
Joe Levine examining item
Joe Levine examining a medal in a 2015 television report
2016-11-Baltimore Neil Musante, Bruce Smith, Joe Levine

Joe Levine reviewing medals at Neil Musante's table, Baltimore November 2016. Bruce Smith in foreground. Wayne Homren photo

2016 September Nummis Nova Velvet devil Merlot Gene Brandenburg Joe levine
Gene Brandenburg and Joe Levine, September 2016 Nummis Nova dinner
Joe Levine and Tom KAys at 2015-05 Nummis Nova meeting
Joe Levine and Tom Kays, May 2015 Nummis Nova dinner

Joe Levine, Charlie Wallace and Neil Musante Baltimore November 2015 Charlie Davis writes:

"I took this photo in Baltimore at my table November 2015. Joe Levine, Charlie Wallace and Neil Musante."

David Menchell writes:

"Joe was the owner of Presidential Coin and Antique Company for many years and was known for his auctions of medals and tokens. He was a brilliant researcher; his catalogues contain a wealth of information and stand as models for in depth cataloguing. Joe was involved with the sale of Presidential Inaugural medals and served on the medal committees for several administrations. He also wrote an important reference on the subject.

Joe will be best remembered for his humor, intelligence and generosity. Whenever I called Joe with a question about a medal or token, he would always respond with a thoughtful, detailed answer. I always looked forward to his auctions held in conjunction with the Baltimore shows. They were low keyed affairs: most of the attendees knew each other, the personnel recording the results were often members of Joe's family and friends.

Joe would be fun to watch, commenting when he thought an item sold for a bargain price, encouraging someone to bid just one more turn to beat a book bid, and consoling a losing bidder not to feel badly since he would have had to go much higher to beat a strong book bid. I felt privileged to be included in Joe's inner circle when we would go to dinner at Morton's following the sales. As the saying goes, Joe was a gentleman and a scholar. He will be missed by all who were fortunate to have known him. "

Neil Musante writes:

"I was terribly saddened to learn of Joe's passing. I had the good fortune to spend an afternoon with Joe and Alice this past October. He was struggling, but upbeat and at times it was like old times. Joe was a kind and good man and I enjoyed being in his company. Some of my fondest numismatic memories were attending his sales. They were always fun. He was always fun to be around and so knowledgable. I feel like I've lost a dear uncle. Deepest sympathy to his daughter, to Alice and to all those who knew and loved Joe."

Jimmy Hayes writes:

"Joe was a member of the official inaugural medals committee for Ford, Reagan, Bush, Clinton and George Bush."

Jeff Rock writes:

"2021 was supposed to be better than this! I am saddened to hear of the loss of Joe; even though he had scaled back his involvement and those Presidential sales no longer arrived he was still everyone's go-to man when they had a question about a token or medal, and he shared his knowledge freely and fully. His auction catalogues are a treasure trove of information and I know many of us could barely wait to see what was in each one, ripping open the envelope the day it arrived and devoting a couple hours to joyful reading - and plotting our plan of attack, since we all knew who else was likely going to be interested in the same things we wanted. I'm glad these sales are on the Newman Numismatic Portal - they will be important references for centuries to come."

robertwhiteheadc1987pres_0001 nathaneglitcolle1992pres_0000

To read Joe's Presidential Coin & Antique catalogs on NNP, see:
Presidential Coin & Antique (

Pete Smith writes:

"I am attaching the image of a medal produced by Levine and his first wife around 1977. There were 400 struck and sold at $3 for the benefit of the American Cancer Society."

Gail and Joe Levine Medal c1977

Nummis Nova 2019-12 Gadsby's Menu

At Nummis Nova we last saw Joe at our 2019 holiday dinner when he and his wife Alice joined us at Gadsby's Tavern in Alexandria, VA., which operated as a hotel and tavern from 1796 to 1808, twice hosting George Washington himself. The room was candlelit and our servers were wearing late 1700s garb. It was a wonderful evening as chronicled in my earlier Numismatic Diary article. -Editor

Nummis Nova 2019-12 front table

Seated from left: Dee Homren, Julian Leidman, Wayne Herndon. Alice and Joe (back to camera) Levine. Standing: Joanne Schenkman. Photo by Wayne Homren

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:

Julian Leidman writes:

"I went back to the 1960's with Joe. While he was still studying, he was an active vest pocket dealer in the DC area. He used to take me to various PA shows and we spent many fun weekends together at these shows. I attended his admittance to the PA bar, as well. He was a very dear friend and will be sorely missed."

Chris Neuzil writes:

"I was saddened to hear about Joe. I was a coin collector beginning to notice medals in the mid 70s when a Boston dealer, Ralph Goldstone if I remember correctly, told me to look Joe up since I was moving to Virginia. How lucky for me that I did. Joe was incredibly knowledgeable, got me to buy Bob Julian's book, and encouraged my budding interest in early American medals. Thanks for everything, Joe."

Joe Esposito writes:

"I am deeply saddened to hear this. Joe was not only a great numismatist, but he was a very friendly person and a great storyteller."

Roger Burdette writes:

"Such a loss of a wonderful person."

Mike Packard writes:

"I enjoyed his stories at our dinners. He will be missed."

Howard Daniel writes:

"I never did any business with Joe but I did sit next him or across the Nummis Dinner table and we had some great conversations. He was always the gentleman and I cannot remember him ever treating anyone badly."

Eric Schena writes:

"I am so sorry to hear of Joe's passing. He was always great to talk to and hear his stories."

Thanks, everyone. I had an additional opportunity to see Joe on November 3, 2020 when I visited his home to pick up several boxes of auction catalogs and dealer pricelists from his library. I sorted through them, saved a number for the Newman Numismatic Portal and donated the rest to the local Fairfax Coin Club. Joe had been ill for a while, but he and Alice were doing well and were both in good spirits. I enjoyed the visit. Joe will be greatly missed. -Editor

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Newman Numismatic Portal Project Coordinator Len Augsburger provided the following update on the digitization of Numismatic News. Thanks. -Editor

numismaticnewsvo1201unse_orig_0001 With the assistance of Cliff Mishler and George Cuhaj, Newman Portal continues to scan Numismatic News (1952-date). The reference set of this periodical is held by the Iola (WI) Historical Society, which has kindly loaned the run for scanning and permitted Newman Portal to unbind the volumes prior to scanning. To date, 1,368 issues have been scanned.

Illustrated here is the front page of the January 6, 1964 issue, announcing that Congress passed legislation, by an overwhelming margin, for the creation of the Kennedy half dollar. The concept design illustrated is markedly different from the actual coin, with smaller central figures on both sides.

While we have not secured permission to display this periodical with full-view on NNP, we will display brief snippets in search results, which will alert researchers and readers to the existence of an article not otherwise known. In addition, Newman Portal is able to fulfill limited requests for copies of selected articles under Fair Use.

Partial boxed set of Numismatic News at Internet Archive scanning center

Together with the earlier digitization of Coin World, this project will make decades of great numismatic research and writing more easily discoverable by researchers. Welcome to the future. -Editor

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:


These are selections from the David Lisot Video Library that feature news and personalities from the world of coin collecting. David has been attending coin conventions since 1972 and began videotaping in 1985. The Newman Numismatic Portal now lists all David's videos on their website at:

Here's one on the medals of Charles Barber. -Editor

Barber Medal Medallic Works of Charles Barber
Video Producer: David Lisot.
Speaker: Lawrence P. Baber.

Charles Barber designed some of America's most famous coins. Learn about other numismatic works that helped ensure this great sculptor's place in history. Delivered at the Florida United Numismatists in January 1996. Lecture with slides.

The video is available for viewing on NNP at:


The CoinWeek Podcast #150 is titled "How R.S. Yeoman Changed the Coin Collecting Hobby Forever." Check out the interview with Red Book Editor Emeritus Ken Bressett at the below link or on iTunes. -Editor

How RS Yeoman Changed Coin Collecting In this week's episode of the CoinWeek Podcast, editor Charles Morgan talks to longtime Red Book editor Kenneth Bressett on the career and legacy of Red Book creator and coin board innovator R.S. Yeoman.

Yeoman's ideas transformed the hobby from an academic pursuit to one with broad mainstream appeal. Whereas most numismatic books published before 1950 were printed in limited numbers, Yeoman's Red Book was an instant success and has gone on to sell tens of millions of copies and is updated annually. This year, we will see the publication of its 75th edition.

Bressett worked with R.S. Yeoman and probably knew him better than anyone in the industry and Charles asks him to share his insights into Yeoman's vision for the hobby and where Yeoman fits amongst the giants of 20-century numismatics.

Also in this episode, Charles and CoinWeek staff writer Chris Bullfinch discuss this week's new United States Mint product offerings and take a quick look at the rise and fall of the Redditors' silver bullion play.

To read the complete article, see:
CoinWeek Podcast #150: How R.S. Yeoman Changed the Coin Collecting Hobby Forever (


Douglas Nyholm published a great article in the Utah Numismatic Society Mint Master for February 2021 about the recent discovery of an engraving plate for a previously unknown $10 Deseret Currency Association note. It was originally published in the SPMC Paper Money journal last month. With permission, we're publishing an excerpt here. Thanks! -Editor

I was recently contacted and received an image of a $10 engraving plate from the Deseret Currency Association which was heretofore unknown. Presently printed notes from the second series of engraved notes were known only in the denominations of $1, $2, $3, and $5. There has never even been a rumor of any other denominations existing. Although this discovery item is the engraving plate, and no printed notes have yet come to light, it is a definite relic that at least plans were in place for a possible printing of this denomination.

Utah Mercantile Currency $10 plate

To begin with, a bit of history about the Deseret Currency Association should be discussed. The "State of Deseret" was formed about two years after the arrival of the "Saints" into the Great Salt Lake valley in 1847 with their leader, Brigham Young. The Mormons were continually active with the issuance of currency beginning in Kirtland Ohio, then from Nauvoo Illinois, and finally from Salt Lake. The "Deseret Currency Association" was organized in January 1858. Its primary purpose was to relieve the lack of circulating currency in "Deseret" and to fund the defense against the U.S. Army which was enroute to Salt Lake. Brigham Young was sure that the army's intentions were to remove himself as Governor, halt the practice of polygamy, and end the Mormon's dominance over economics and political affairs in the territory. Capital was desperately needed as there were no banks in the territory and the only circulating specie was a small amount of circulating U.S. money in addition to a few remaining re-issued Kirtland banknotes and a small number of Mormon gold coins available.

Thus, the first issue of The Deseret Currency Association's currency was consisting of typeset denominations hastily printed in the denominations of $1, $2, $3, $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100. These were printed uniface on very thin paper issued with the notation "Good Only in this Territory." This issue was later a target for the now infamous counterfeiter Mark Hofmann in the early 1980's who researched records to determine the denominations which were issued. Presently only the $1 and $2 denominations plus a unique $3 are known to have survived as authenticated genuine specimens. Hofmann created forgeries of all the higher denominations.

These typeset original Type 1 denominations were issued quickly due to the urgent need and the higher quality engraved examples were planned but the copper plates would not be available for several months. Later in the year the engraved copper plates were prepared. The plates indicate that the "drawer," or designer was Henry Maiben and the "engraver" was David McKenzie as noted in small font at the lower edge. It is also well documented that plates for denominations of $1, $2, $3, and $5 were prepared as well as surviving known printed notes of all four denominations. This recently discovered copper printing plate for a $10 denomination for the Deseret Currency Association is therefore an extraordinary find. Up to this time there has not been any information that such a denomination was contemplated let alone a printing plate created.

The article next goes into the timeline of Deseret currency printing and the printing plates themselves. -Editor

First, a little history of copper printing plates which were created during this time in Salt Lake. Prior to the discovery of this $10 plate no other copper engraving plates were known to exist except for a $2 plate created for the "Utah Territory Mercantile Company" presumably by the same engraver, David McKenzie, as his signature appears at the bottom left of the printed $3 note of this type. Approximately 10-15 years ago a copper plate was sold at auction for a $2 denomination from the Utah Territory Mercantile Company. This brings to two, the number of Utah copper engraved plates known today. There are also no printed notes known to have been printed or have survived from this $2 plate.

Utah Mercantile Currency $2 plate

The above mentioned $2 plate was auctioned by Stacks on October 16th, 2007.

Judge John Cradlebaugh, who served in Utah during 1858 and was an outspoken critic of the Mormons, spoke to the House of Representatives on February 7, 1863. He discussed the seizure of currency printing plates from Brigham Young's workshop "and produced and waived in his hand during his speech the two copper plates which he stated were produced in Utah to promulgate forgery and counterfeiting against the U.S. Government." -Editor

How did this discovery plate come to be found? To begin with, it was found in the basement rafters of a house located at 10th St. SW in Washington D.C. It appeared at a small local auction in the area in early 2020, where it was purchased by the present owner. The consignor obtained it from her grandfather who was living in the house until 1954. He passed it on because she was interested in history. The house was built in 1909 on a vacant lot purchased in that same year. The house functioned as a boarding house with residents employed in the Washington D.C. area and is located about 1 mile from a local Mormon Church. The ability to trace who may have placed it in the rafters is probably impossible since from the speech in 1863, to at least 1909 when the house was built there is an untraceable gap. It seems to possibly have had some connection either with some Mormons or a political figure who may have been connected to Cradlebaugh who was the last person to be traced to the plate.

SUMMARY The importance of this discovery cannot be overstated. It is a significant remnant of a tumultuous time in the history of the Mormons early history in the Salt Lake valley. It also ties this newly found copper engraving to the first copperplate engraving of the Mercantile Currency which was completed in the western territories of the fledgling United States. Although not 100% verified it is certainly strong evidence of the illegal counterfeiting efforts to undermine the U.S. Army troops sent to Deseret. It is also an amazing artifact from the second type of the Deseret Currency Association, which was the only currency ever issued in the United States to be backed by livestock and a denomination that was never known to have been documented or even planned. I am pleased to be able to bring this part of history to light not only to historians but collectors alike. It is one more instance that with history, not everything is known, and new discoveries are still waiting to be brought to light.

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No Known Polymer £5 Note Counterfeits
Jonathan Callaway writes:

"I found the article RAID NETS UK'S LARGEST COUNTERFEIT SEIZURE very interesting. One unfortunate error in it is that the original report used the image of the current polymer £5 note, whereas the criminals had been counterfeiting the last paper £20 note, a very different situation indeed. There are no known examples of any of the new polymer notes being counterfeited and I think that should be made clear."

Good point. Thank you. Journalists aren't the best with numismatic details. I perpetuated the error, but that was the only image I had to work with in the article. I must see dozens and dozens of counterfeiting articles each week, and most are uninteresting stories of small-time crooks. The following article from Hong Kong was an example of that, and was included only because of the shared theme. The U.K. report was notable for the size of the haul and the sophistication of the counterfeiters. -Editor

To read the earlier E-Sylum articles, see:

Playing with Coin Whirligigs
Merriam Token Two-Holder Pie Crimper reverse Lev Linkner writes:

"E-Sylum readers are so fantastic and filled with information. Thanks for figuring out my Apollo token is a kids toy. I will try it out today with my 2 1/2 year old grandson! Please thank the respondents for me!"

DONE! Have fun with it. If you have the piece slabbed, will they drill holes so you can still play?

Thanks also to Carol Bastable and other readers who wrote in about coins as pie crimpers. The E-Sylum is like a weekly cocktail party with people across the numismatic spectrum, and the conversation drifts from one interesting topic to the next. Lots to learn along the way! -Editor

To read the earlier E-Sylum articles, see:
NOTES FROM E-SYLUM READERS: JANUARY 24, 2021 : Merriam Token Two-Holed Pie Crimper (
NOTES FROM E-SYLUM READERS: JANUARY 31, 2021 : Coin Whirligigs (

Warwickshire Conder Token With Multiple Counterstamps

Warwickshire 81 counterstamps
Jeff Rock writes:

"I read with interest Bob Rhue's bit on his counterstamped Hard Times Token. Definitely a cool piece - but the Brits would say "hold my (warm) beer," as this D&H Warwickshire 81 Conder token has a dozen DIFFERENT counterstamps, all on the reverse side. Stuff like this is definitely fun!

"I should note that while the counterstamps are different, the letter punches look quite similar in style, even though some are in different size. I suspect this was a test piece for whoever was making the counterstamp punches that he then sold to others, and perhaps the hole in the center was to hang it from a nail to keep it handy."

Interesting piece - definitely a fun item. -Editor

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:

Vattemare and the Castorland Jetons
Chester Sullivan writes:

Vattemare on Castorland Jetons "Thanks for calling attention to Alexandre Vattemare's Collection de Monnaies de L'Amerique du nord de 1652- a 1858. Len Augsburger and David Gladfelter added good insights, and I found a new early reference to the Castorland jetons!"

You're welcome. Vattemare's writings are often overlooked by U.S. collectors because they're not in English, but he was one of the giants of early American numismatics. I was pleased to "discover" his 1864 article even though it was only a rediscovery. Generations of numismatists come and go and each one has a lot of relearning to do. Illustrated is Vattemare's entry for the Castorland piece on p119 of his 1861 work. -Editor

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:

Ridgewood Coin & Stamps Ridgewood Coin & Stamps
Harry Waterson writes:

"In looking for something else, I ran across this great photo of a neighborhood coin store."

The store is (or was) in Ridgewood, Queens, New York. Harry ran it past former New Yorker George Cuhaj, who wasn't familiar with it. Can anyone tell us more? Who ran this shop? -Editor

To read the complete article, see:

Franklin Cent = Fugio Cent

Fugio Cent obverse Fugio Cent reverse

Bob Rhue writes:

Fugio 'Franklin Cent' envrlope "Long ago I purchased a Fugio Cent that came in This original envelope from the famous coin retailer of the day, Scotts coin company.

"Fugio cents are one of the perennial favorites of colonial coins because they are billed as the "first coins issued by authority of the United States".

"In 1787 Congress authorized a contract with a Mr. James Jarvis for the coinage of 300 tons of copper coin. As an aside, Jarvis had significant problems obtaining sufficient amounts of raw copper. He obtained scrap copper from any available sources, which accounts for the large proportion of known Fugios that are found with one degree or another of inclusions/black impurities embedded in the planchet.

"Little known however is the fact that Fugios used to be known as "Franklin Cents". That was because the obverse mottos are credited to Benjamin Franklin. Fugio meaning "time flies"; and "Mind Your Business" meaning tend to your affairs."

Thanks. Neat ephemera. I have often seen these referred to as Franklin cents in older numismatic literature. The Newman Portal contains many such references. 'Fugio' is certainly the term preferred today. -Editor

Correction: Lincoln Cent Composition Change in 1982
Regarding this section of last week's Vocabulary entry on collar wear: "Cents struck before 1972 used a collar with a 0.747-inch aperture. After 1972 (with the new copper-coated zinc composition)", B.J. Herbison writes:

"The switch in composition happened in 1982, not 1972."

Len Augsburger and I agree - that's a typo and should be '1982'. He corrected the Newman Portal dictionary entry and we'll fix the E-Sylum archive. Thanks. -Editor

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:

1965 Double Headed Quarter
Website visitor Tiffany Owens writes:

"I would like to authenticate my 1965 double headed quarter with no mint mark. It weighs 5.44/5.43 grams."

1965 double headed quarter side 1 1965 double headed quarter side 2

I responded: "Genuine 1965 quarters weigh 5.67 grams. See: A Guide Book of United States Coins by R.S. Yeoman, 2020 edition. Your coin is too light. It's probably a "Magician's coin" used for magic tricks. They're usually made by taking two genuine quarters, splitting them in half and putting the heads and tails sides together to make two fake coins. If you look at the edge, you might find a seam. If you'd like to get an official determination, submit it to one of the major services."

Looking at these photos a seam is evident even without seeing the edge. It's very likely a fake. -Editor

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Lev Linker noticed a reader inquiry in the November 23, 2020 Coin World about a nickel-colored 1896 Indian Cent. CW staff concluded that the silvery-looking piece was likely a normal worn cent that had been plated outside the mint. -Editor

1896  Silvered Indian Cent obverse 1896  Silvered Indian Cent reverse

Lev writes:

"The silver-plated cent is from the Bryan presidential campaign of 1896. The cent is not listed in Fred Schornstein's Bryan Money book; I suspect since it's not a minted token. I do not know how many of these are left, or just went into circulation and the plating quickly wore off."

2003 Byran Silvered Indian Cent ad cropped Interesting. I've never seen one of these, and was unaware of their existence. Lev provided a clipping from p9 of the January 27, 2003 Coin World with an ad from Larry Hanks' Columbia Rarities Group, Inc. advertising "1896 William Jennings Bryan Presidential Campaign "Silvered" Indian Cents" for sale. Various search terms in the Newman Portal turned up only on that date in Coin World plus August 12 and 26, 2002 and November 18, 2002. Len Augsburger confirmed that these hits are all other examples of the same ad.

Lev has one of these coins, and provided all the illustrations for this article. Can anyone provide documentation of the creation of these cents for the Bryan campaign independent of these ads? -Editor

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Here's another entry from Dick Johnson's Encyclopedia of Coin and Medal Terminology. -Editor

Collector's Mark. A type of hallmark applied by an owner to a numismatic or medallic item to prove ownership, such like a bookplate or an accession number. Perhaps in fear of theft collectors have inscribed, stamped or penned their initials, name, a number or symbol on numismatic items (usually on the edge). This is generally not appreciated by succeeding owners unless the figures or letters can be easily removed, or the owner is famous – in which case the mark remains intact. In recent years, collectors have marked their more valuable items with invisible ink (then it becomes identifiable under ultraviolet light).

In Poland during the 19th century and because of the chronic political unrest there, collectors marked their collections with collector's marks and the Morgenroth collection (#267) has such a collector's mark. But perhaps the most interesting collector's mark was used by J.P. Morgan who had medals in his personal collection pricked on the edge with seven tiny holes – in the shape of the Big Dipper and the North Star. Compare hallmarking, accession number.

Interesting - I was familiar with collector's marks, but not J.P. Morgan's. Do any of our readers own one of these pieces? Has a photo of the mark been published anywhere? -Editor

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Here's another entry from the online draft of John Lupia's book of numismatic biographies. Thanks! This week's subject is F. C. C. "Fred" Boyd. John's article is quite extensive and this is a short excerpt with the full article and bibliography available online. -Editor

Boyd F.C.C. Boyd, Frederick Cogswell (1884-1958), Coin Dealer, Business Executive, Philanthropist.

He was born in September 1884, in New York City, New York...

F. C. C. Boyd made his first appearance on the numismatic scene, in June 1912, when he applied for membership in the ANA.

In July 1912, he was elected to membership in the New York Numismatic Club, and exhibited an 1858 proof silver dollar. This was not an exceptionally rare coin, having more than 300 minted, but it did show not only his flair for high-grade coins from the outset but also his ability to attract attention by those who had such coins in their collections allowing him to network.

His activity in the numismatic field grew rapidly and by December 1912, he was already being nominated for the Executive Committee of New York Numismatic Club.

Boyd Numismatist ad 1913 Sept 17 He held a mail-bid sale on Sept 17, 1913, Sale of Collection of Foreign and United States Gold, Silver, Minor Coins, Patterns, Medals, Siege Pieces.

On January 17, 1914, he became a Fellow and resident member of the American Numismatic Society (ANS). He contributed to the 1914 ANS Exhibition by placing on loan an 1856 $20 Blake & Co.

Boyd's interests in obsolete paper currency collecting is first seen in the July 1915 meeting of the New York Numismatic Club, where he exhibited eight different essays for Confederate notes, with the backs of $5, $10, and $20, printed on block. Also, several other items of the Confederacy including a Postal Money Order for $7,896.42 and the Seal of the Department of the Treasury of the Confederate States of America (CSA)

At the September meeting of the New York Numismatic Club he exhibited a Spinner fractional currency note of fifty cents, and a series of various private notes printed for Bishop's General Store, Salt Lake City, Utah, mainly dating to the late 1890's.

Probably during the late summer or early spring of 1915, Boyd married Mary Helen Lynch.

In June 1918, the New York Numismatic Club struck a gold medal commemorating the presidency of Boyd from 1916 to 1917.[15] The medal was designed by J. M. Swanson. One was struck in gold, one in silver, and fifty in bronze. The medal is illustrated in the 1922 The New York Numismatic Yearbook on page 17, and in The Numismatist, March 1951, on page 268. He was again elected as the Chairman of the Executive Committee of the New York Numismatic Club for 1918.

In 1918, he became manager of the purchasing department of the Union News Company, a subsidiary of the American News Company, and was promoted to Vice-President at the time of his retirement in 1946.

He cataloged the American Numismatic Association (ANA) convention auction in August 1922, 800 lots, with Daniel R. Kennedy as the auctioneer, at the Great Northern Hotel, 118 West 57th Street, New York, New York.

In 1924 he published the book by Daniel Webster Valentine and the New York Numismatic Club, "Fractional Currency" of the United States.

During the 1930s, Boyd served as a board member of the National Recovery Administration, and later as a board member of the Office of Price Administration during WWII.

From 1945 to 1946, Abe Kosoff and Abner Kreisberg and his Numismatic Gallery sold portions of the Boyd Collection showcasing it as "The World's Greatest Collection."

In 1950 he became a Life Fellow of the ANS and a Patron.

He died on September 7, 1958 following surgery at Orange Memorial Hospital, Orange, New Jersey.

To read the complete article, see:

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Howard R. Engel is the proprietor of Richard Stockley Books in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, specializing in numismatic and philatelic literature. He recently inaugurated a new column on literature in Bison Tales, a publication of the Manitoba Coin Club. They and Howard kindly agreed to my request to republish the articles here in The E-Sylum. Thanks for sharing this. Items discussed are generally part of Howard's stock. All readers are welcome to do the same, offering a "show-and-tell" about interesting numismatic literature items in their library, duplicate file or stock. -Editor

Engel's Angle on Numismatic Literature

Richard Stockley Books logo Welcome back to my occasional column "Engel's Angle on Numismatic Literature". This month we are looking at another venerable leading pioneer of Canadian numismatics, this time "Canada's foremost collector and one of the leading numismatic scholars in the world", Robert Wallace (R. W.) McLachlan (1845-1926) and specifically his work Canadian Communion Tokens: A Catalogue of Metal Sacramental Tickets Used in the Different Presbyterian Churches in Canada. This work was originally published serially in 1889-1890 in the Canadian Antiquarian and Numismatic Journal and then first reprinted as a monograph in 1891. It has been reprinted in book form at least a couple of times since then.

Robert Wallace McLachlan R.W. McLachlan, born in Montreal on March 9, 1845, began collecting at the young age of 12 in 1857 when copper coins circulating in Upper and Lower Canada consisted of a "hetergeneous collection of coins and tokens of many countries" that held out fascination and challenge for the observant young collector to find rare and attractive specimens. He certainly inherited a few of these upon receiving, through his mother, his maternal grandfather's collection of some dozen pieces amassed about a century before. The collection included "a Scottish six shilling piec of James VI, a copper one tari piece of Emanuel de Rohan of Malta, with the head of John the Baptist, and one or two 18th century trade tokens". In 1862 he had the opportunity to view the "well selected and extensively classified" coin cabinet consisting of some 3,000 pieces of Mr. J. L. Brondson, "one of the most ardent Montreal collectors of the time." This inspired McLachlan to build up his own collection, which had grown to about 150 pieces by then, with similar discriminating selection and organization into a coin cabinet, specializing in Canadian material. He paid attention to the accurate classification of each piece to better appreciate their intrinsic beauty, history and variety for the sake of education and exhibition, inventory and posterity.

McLachlan also appreciated the social aspects of the numismatic hobby, becoming, in 1864, an early and very active member of the Numismatic Society of Montreal (later the Antiquarian and Numismatic Society of Montreal), sponsored by his mentor Brondson. He also was elected as one of the earliest members of the Numismatic Society of London in 1868. He became a charter member of the British Numismatic Society and a permanent member of the American Numismatic Society in 1884, after a 2-year stint as a corresponding member of the ANS from 1877-1879. McLachlan first became a member of the American Numismatic Association (ANA) in 1908, attending and presenting papers at many ANA conventions. At the Chicago Convention in 1911 he was elected as 2nd Vice-President of the ANA and became 1st Vice-President in 1913. McLachlan was inducted in the ANA Hall of Fame in 1982.

By the time McLachlan turned 77 years of age in 1922, he decided that he could no longer actively manage his extensive collection and he wanted to preseve it for public education in his home city of Montreal. He thus arranged to transfer ownership (partially by donation and partially by sale) of his collection of 20,000 pieces (including the most complete collection of Canadian numismatics amassed to that time), plus his numismatic library consisting of 500 books and 5,000 pamphlets to the Antiquarian and Numismatic Society of Montreal to reside in the home of the Society at the Chateau de Ramezay museum for generations to come. The Bank of Canada purchased the McLachlan Collection from Chateau de Ramezay in 1974 but this did not include his numismatic library, which was sold to a private collector in 1984 and was later dispersed in at least four George Kolbe numismatic auctions in the 1990s.

As a pioneer Canadian numismatic giant, McLachlan would not only subscribe to the adage of subsequent generations, "Buy the book before you buy the coin", he effectively communicated by his extensive numisatic research "Write the book about the coin"! His "home club", the Antiquarian and Numismatic Society of Montreal published his many articles in their journal, beginning with the first issue in 1872 with the article "A Plea for Artistic Coinage". Over the years many of his articles were reprinted as a testimony to their quality and authority in the field. Notable examples include "'Canadian Temperance Medals", "Money and Medals of the Old Regime in Canada", "The Louisburg Medals", "The Card Money of Canada" and "Canadian Communion Tokens". The last example on the aforementioned list of McLachlan's prolific numismatic publications is the focus of this column's work of numismatic literature.

Communion tokens were a way some churches (most notably, in the Canadian colonies, those of the Calvinist tradition later known, after the union of 1875, as the Presbyterian Church in Canada) to identify their own worthy communing members. They were issued in the base metal of the day (white metal, pewter and later issues in aluminum). In the Calvinist tradition, communion was celebrated only a couple of times a year and required much preparation and anticipation among the faithful. Parishioners would arrive on Wednesday for the Communion event that began on Thursday and culminated with the celebration of Holy Communion on the Sunday. The tokens were distributed on Saturday night by the minister in charge to deserving members who then would submit them at the time of communion the following day. Tokens would typically include the name or initials of the Church and its community, the year of issue and an appropriate Bible verse on the reverse, such as "This do in remembrance of me" (I Corinthians 11:24), In terms of their shape they were typically square, rectangular, or oblong, seldom round, presumably since the need for text was more easily accomplished on non-round shapes. Later stock tokens would sometimes replace the name of the parish and date of issue with another Bible verse, like "Let a man examine himself." (I Corinthians 11: 28). Others might include an image of the Communion table, for instance.

Canadian Communion Tokens cover Canadian Communion Tokens Charleton cover

The earliest communion token in the Canadian colonies of British North America was issued by the Assoicate Presbytery in Truro, Nova Scotia in 1772. Just over a century later, in 1876, the newly formed Presbyterian Church in Canada probably issued the last communion token with the name of an individual parish, in this case Old St. Andrew's Church in Toronto, Ont. According to Warren Baker, most churches that had used parish-specific tokens had opted for stock tokens and the much less expensive cardboard tickets beginning in the 1860s. Thus, by the time McLachlan produced his treatise on Canadian Communion Tokens in 1891 and assign his own numbering system to them, the series was complete and ripe for a comprehensive treatment that only a numismatist of McLachlan's caliber could give. In recognition of McLachlan's numismatic research and service in the Royal Society of Canada (RSC), including many years as the official Antiquarian and Numismatic Society delegate to RSC meetings, in 1911 he was elected as a member of the prestigious and exclusive RSC. This entitled McLachlan to the rare privilege of using the initials F.R.S.C. after his name.

Original copies of the 1891 reprint are rare. I have the following in stock for numismatic bibliophiles who prefer original editions of Canadian numismatic pioneers:

McLachlan, Robert Wallace. Canadian Communion Tokens: a Catalogue of Metal Sacramental Tickets Used in the Different Presbyterian Churches in Canada. Montreal: William Drysdale, 1891. 62 p., original paper stapled covers, front cover loose, chipped, pages yellowed and paper extremely brittle, archival copy, $80.

The following is the most common reprint, excellent for research purposes:

McLachlan, Robert Wallace. Canadian Communion Tokens: a Catalogue of Metal Sacramental Tickets Used in the Different Presbyterian Churches in Canada. (Charlton Numismatic Historical Series, vol. 1) Toronto: Charlton 1991 reprint. (4), 62, (2) pages, original printed card covers,bumped on right side and slightly creased at lower right. $20.

As contemporary numismatic research luminary and the 2019 recipient of Canada's top numismatic award, the J. Douglas Ferguson Medal, Stanley Clute observes, "'It is not unfair to state McLachlan left behind him a legacy of numismatic research and writing which helped in large measure to lay the groundwork for today's researchers into early Canadian numismatics.'" to which I say, "Amen!"


Atchison, Darryl, ed. Canadian Numismatic Bibliography. The Numismatic Education Society of Canada, 2007, p. 412 (reference to McLachlan's series of articles on Canadian communion tokens originally published in the Canadian Antiquarian and Numismatic Journal).

Atchison, Darryl. "Robert Wallace McLachlan (1845-1926)" Newman Numismatic Portal (, accessed Jan. 15, 2021)

The Charlton Standard Catalogue of Candian Communion Tokens. 1st ed. Toronto: The Charlton Press, 1992, p. ix & x (Warren Baker's introduction), p. 81 (Truro, first token, 1772) p. 239 (Toronto - Old St. Andrew's Church latest name-parish token, 1876), p. 259 (stock token with inscription and altar/communion table design), p. 261 (stock token with inscription on obverse and reverse)

"Obituary: Robert Wallace McLachlan". The Numismatist. Vol. 39 no. 6, June 1926, p. 290-293.

Robitaille, Jesse. "Early Canadian Numismatists gave hobby life". Canadian Coin News. Vol. 58 no. 15, Oct. 27-Nov. 9, 2020, p. 1 (quote by Stanley Clute).

Thanks, Howard! Readers can reach him at 204-253-0419 or by email at -Editor


American Gold and Silver: Dennis Tucker's award-winning 384-page history and guide to U.S. Mint collector and investor coins and medals, Bicentennial to date. Q. David Bowers calls it "the source for facts on the Mint's modern gold and silver coins and medals." $29.95. Order your copy online at , or call 1-800-546-2995.


Julia Casey submitted these notes regarding David Pickup's request about the medallist H.W. Page. Thanks! -Editor

Engraver HEnry W. Page

I searched the records at and believe he is the same person as Henry William Page (b. May 6, 1882, d. Feb 1971). Page appears to have immigrated to Philadelphia in about 1914. He apparently went back to England at some point in the 1920s and then returned to Philadelphia in 1930, where he was naturalized as a US citizen in 1939.

His World War I draft registration lists him as living at 1509 Girard Ave in Philadelphia. At that time he was employed as a die-sinker at J.E. Caldwell & Co at South Penn Square. In 1980 some of his personal collection was sold by Johnson & Jensen. The catalog is located on the Newman Numismatic Portal and there is a photograph of him along with the auction listings.

Arts and Crafts Exhibition Society 10th Expo catalog Henry W. Page also submitted a "Design for a Medal to commemorate the present Exhibition" of the Arts and Crafts Exhibition Society in 1912. (#485). Perhaps the 1912 medal by Page is related to this?

If needed I can provide additional US Census and database records.

David Pickup writes:

"Please thank Julia for doing this. It is very helpful and interesting"

For more information, see:
Auction & Mail Bid Sale #8: Robert D. Young Bicentennial Collection Part 2, Plus Many Other Consignments (
Arts & Crafts Exhibition Society : catalogue of the tenth exhibition, the Grosvenor Gallery, 51A New Bond St., 1912 (

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:

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The United States Mint said on Tuesday it was un

This Reuters article discusses the Mint's problems meeting increased demand for bullion coins. -Editor

able to meet surging demand for its gold and silver bullion coins in 2020 and through January, due partly to pandemic-driven demand and plant capacity issues.

Sales of U.S. gold bullion coins rose 258% in 2020 while silver coin demand was up 28%, the U.S. Mint said Tuesday. Heavy buying has continued in 2021, it said, squeezing supplies, which had already been tight as the coronavirus affected production.

A social media-driven buying spree lifted silver futures to an eight-year high on Monday, but dealers in the market for coins were already grappling with a supply shortage and shipping delays before that rally.

The Mint, a division of the U.S. Treasury, had limited distribution of its silver coins to suppliers as it is currently changing the designs for its American Eagle Gold and Silver Bullion Coins.

"There was going to be a backlog in the silver bullion supply chain that rendered Silver Eagles more scarce either way," said Everett Millman at Gainesville Coins in Florida. He expected delays until mid-March for the most popular products.

In January, 220,500 American Eagle gold bullion coins were sold, up 290% from 56,500 a year earlier, the Mint said.

To read the complete article, see:
Gold, silver coin demand surging, straining U.S. Mint's capacity (


In a press release published February 3, 2021, the U.S. Mint announced the reappointment of Mary Lannin as Chairperson of the CCAC. -Editor

The United States Mint announced today that Mary N. Lannin has once again been appointed as the Chairperson of the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee (CCAC) for a one-year term effective January 29, 2021. Ms. Lannin previously served as Chairperson from 2015 to 2018.

Ms. Lannin, of New York City, was first appointed to the CCAC in 2014 based on the recommendation of the then-House Minority Leader, Nancy Pelosi. She was reappointed to a second four-year term in 2018. Her interest in the CCAC comes from her childhood love of coin collecting, which was rekindled when she purchased a Roman denarius once owned by John Quincy Adams, a noted coin collector and the sixth President of the United States.

Ms. Lannin is a former public television producer and director (KTCA-TV 1968-1978) and former California winery owner and representative (Winery Associates 1982-2000, National Accounts Director; Murphy-Goode Estate Winery 1985-2006, Founding Partner). She is a life member of both the American Numismatic Association and the American Numismatic Society, to which she was elected a Fellow in 2015 and a Board Member in 2017. She is currently a member of the Royal Numismatic Society, the Swiss Numismatic Society, the San Francisco Ancient Numismatic Society, the Pacific Coast Numismatic Society, and the New York Numismatic Club, on which she serves as Secretary-Treasurer.

Ms. Lannin is a freelance editor with developed skills in numismatic publication, and has worked with authors from the United States, Canada, Germany, and Greece. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Minnesota (1969) and attended Trinity College in Washington, DC.

The CCAC was established by an Act of Congress in 2003. It advises the Secretary of the Treasury on theme or design proposals relating to circulating coinage, bullion coinage, Congressional Gold Medals, and other medals produced by the United States Mint. The CCAC also makes commemorative coin recommendations to the Secretary and advises on the events, persons, or places to be commemorated, as well as on the mintage levels and proposed designs.

The CCAC is subject to the authority of the Secretary of the Treasury. The United States Mint is responsible for providing necessary and appropriate administrative support, technical services, and advice.

The CCAC submits an annual report to Congress and the Secretary of the Treasury, describing its activities and providing recommendations.

To read the complete article, see:
Mary N. Lannin Appointed to Position of Chairperson of the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee (

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:

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Heritage guest cataloger Bruce Hagen submitted this final selection of highlights from the Hunter collection of U.S. colonial notes. Thanks! -Editor

The formation of thirteen colonies sets has been a popular pursuit for generations. Whether seeking to advance an existing collection or to embark on commencing a new one, collectors need to look no further than the Hunter Collection. This remarkable selection of colonial and Continental notes presents numerous opportunities to achieve a distinguished thirteen colonies set. All will be offered unreserved at auction on Thursday, February 11, 2021.

Delaware May 1, 1777 9 Pence face Delaware May 1, 1777 9 Pence bac

Delaware May 1, 1777 9 Pence Fr. DE-84 PCGS Gem New 65PPQ.
A handsome nine pence note with normal margins. Deeply embossed, with the sheaf of wheat on the back beautifully detailed. Lot 94079.

To read the complete lot description, see:
Delaware May 1, 1777 9 Pence Fr. DE-84 PCGS Gem New 65PPQ.. ... (

Maryland March 1, 1770 $8 face
Maryland March 1, 1770 $8 back

Maryland March 1, 1770 $8 Fr. MD-59 PCGS Extremely Fine 45PPQ.
This is a high-grade note from the March 1, 1770, issue. Face margins display near-perfect balance, and the back is strongly printed. Notes from this issue in Uncirculated condition are basically impossible to find, making this a premium quality example. An underrated Colonial series for notes in this condition. Lot 94159.

To read the complete lot description, see:
Maryland March 1, 1770 $8 Fr. MD-59 PCGS Extremely Fine 45PPQ.. ... (

Gem Two-Color March 25, 1776 3 Pounds Note

New Jersey March 25, 1776 3 Pounds face
New Jersey March 25, 1776 3 Pounds back

New Jersey March 25, 1776 3 Pounds Fr. NJ-182 PCGS Gem New 65PPQ.
This colorful type has always been popular, and it is difficult to find in high grades. Blue and red face color three pound- and six pound- notes were printed for the March 25, 1776, series by Isaac Collins. The Royal coat of arms, sun vignette, and interior bordering in red are enclosed within intricate blue borders. The text is blue. Due to the use of two types of printing set-ups, there are two plate variants created by the orientation of the adjacent six-pound notes printed on the same four-subject plate. Because the "first set-up plate" left no room for a clear margin between the three and six pound denominations, borders from the six pounds were seen on the three pounds positioned above on the plate. However, the "second set-up plate" examples, such as this, have sufficient margins, and do not show the geometric bordering of the adjacent denomination. The imprint on the beautiful nature print back, complete with a line of detailed bees, is ISAAC COLLINS. These red and black high denominations from the issue are underrated compared to the more plentiful low denominations. A gorgeous note with vibrant colors, perfect face-to-back registration, and deep embossing. Lot 94238 .

To read the complete lot description, see:
New Jersey March 25, 1776 3 Pounds Fr. NJ-182 PCGS Gem New 65PPQ.. ... (

Pennsylvania April 10, 1777 20 Shillings front Pennsylvania April 10, 1777 20 Shillings back

Choice Uncirculated April 10, 1777 20 Shillings Red and Black Note Pennsylvania April 10, 1777 20 Shillings Red and Black Fr. PA-222b PMG Choice Uncirculated 63 EPQ.
There are a few Uncirculated notes reported of the 20 shillings denomination from this issue, with this a new listing. A beautifully embossed note with rich color on both sides. The contrast between the bold black ornaments and red devices on the face is dazzling. A perfect representative from this colorful issue. Lot 94374.

To read the complete lot description, see:
Pennsylvania April 10, 1777 20 Shillings Red and Black Fr. PA-222b PMG Choice Uncirculated 63 EPQ.. ... (

Superior May 7, 1781 $1200 Note

Virginia May 7, 1781 $1200

Virginia May 7, 1781 $1200 Fr. VA-223 PMG About Uncirculated 55.
The heavy inflation of Colonial paper currency at the time is seen on this unusual high denomination. A beautiful example in a comment-free holder. Charming sun and moon vignettes are at the left end. Superior to the Newman Collection note that realized $646.25 in October 2015. Lot 94461.

To read the complete lot description, see:
Virginia May 7, 1781 $1200 Fr. VA-223 PMG About Uncirculated 55.. ... (

This important collection, featuring over 400 different Colonial note types, will be auctioned online on Thursday, February 11, 2021, commencing at 6:00 PM Central Time (7:00 P.M. Eastern). Lot viewing is available by appointment only at Heritage's Office in Dallas; contact Jose Berumen at or 214-409-1299. Please click here to visit the online catalog. All lots are currently on view and open for bidding now.

To read the earlier E-Sylum articles, see:

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Here's the press release for the Holabird Americana "Sweetheart Express" February 2021 sale. It only touches on the numismatic content, but I hope to have more detail in another article. -Editor


Headlining the auction are two major collections: Gary Nelson (railroadiana) and Stewart "Scotty" MacKenzie (Montana mining). Nearly 4,000 premier lots will come up for bid.

Holabird E-Sylum ad 2021-01-31 Sweetheart Auction Already famous for its five-day monster auctions that feature thousands of lots in a rainbow of collecting categories, Holabird Western Americana Collections will up the ante with a Sweetheart Express Auction, also five days, from February 11th -15th , online and live in the Reno gallery located at 3555 Airway Drive. The sale is bursting with nearly 4,000 premier lots.

"The first sale of 2021 promises to be our best sale in several years – across the board – in every category," said Fred Holabird, president and owner of Holabird Western Americana Collections. "We've been fortunate to receive many key collections to offer some of the best material to be sold in years. It may be the best cross-section of collectibles since the big market crash of 2008."

Start times all five days are 8 am Pacific time, with Internet bidding available via,, and Telephone and absentee bids will also be accepted. The full catalog can be viewed online now, at For those planning to attend the auction in person, all state and CDC regulations and protocols regarding the COVID-19 coronavirus (masks, social distancing, etc.) will be strictly enforced

The auction is titled The Sweetheart Express because it's loaded with sweet deals right around Valentine's Day and contains thousands of gift ideas for that special someone. The sale will be headlined by two major collections: the Gary Nelson collection of railroadiana and the Stewart MacKenzie collection of Montana mining. Both should attract a great deal of bidder interest.

Top billing goes to Gary Nelson, a lifetime collector and railroad employee whose collection features hundreds of trains in excellent working condition, engines, accessories, buildings, specialty cars (such as snow plows and maintenance cars, with crews), tracks, one-of-a-kind trains (many in mint or near-mint condition), and hundreds of different multi-signal lamps.

There are also hundreds of railroad lanterns, including a Wabash embossed lamp with a teal globe, railroad signal signs, rolling stock with factory errors, a 1930s Standard Gauge in near- mint condition and more. All-model train scales and gauges include S-Gauge, O-Gauge, HO- Gauge and O-27. Names like Lionel, MTH, American Flyer and Buddy "L" are all included. The collection includes the very first cast-iron train purchased from the Graham Clayton collection.

Citizens Gas stock certificate

Rare 1871 stock certificate for Citizens Gas Light Company (Newark, N.J.), issued to Eustace E. Marcy for 14 shares at $50 per share, signed by the president and treasurer (est. $500-$1,000).

Stewart "Scotty" MacKenzie (1942-2020) of Chinook, Montana was a die-hard Montana "paper" collector. One of his great finds was the archive of the Pony, Montana Miners Union, with all their banners, badges and accoutrements. At trade shows he'd have boxes of letters and invoices, having learned that the billhead and letterhead market needed more Montana mining material.

MacKenzie also discovered tons of mining stocks. He brought Montana to the forefront when he acquired the huge holdings of the Butte mines. Armed with thousands of stocks signed by mining magnate William A. Clark, MacKenzie fed these pieces into the worldwide certificate market, increasing global demand. His collection of Montana billheads, letterheads and stocks is huge.

Day 1, on Thursday, February 11th , will feature general Americana (jewelry, marbles and toys, geographic sort and miscellaneous), bottles and saloon collectibles (including brewing items and drug ephemera), mining collectibles and Part 1 of stocks and bonds (to include mining paper). Featured will be stocks and bonds (especially oil stocks) from Ken Prag's sizable collection of U.S. businesses other than mining and railroad. Included are great rarities in every category, as well as rare autographs, including Thomas Edison and many other important financial figures.

James Marshall autograph

Autographed card of James Marshall with vignette of Sutters Mill (Calif.) at left, "Discoverer of Gold in California, January 19th, 1848", signed Jas. W. Marshall" (est. $1,200-$1,500).

Day 1 will contain rare Gold Rush and Western mining collectibles, to include a gorgeous gold-in-quartz watch chain and a James Marshall autograph ("Discoverer of Gold in California, January 19th, 1848", signed Jas. W. Marshall"). Also offered will be a Nome Mining photo album, a large Leadville ephemera collection, a circa 1903 United Mine Workers Pikes Peak banner, rare Nevada pieces (including a Con-Virginia assay ledger), and choice mining medals.

Vulture Mine ingot

Important discovery gold ingot from the Vulture Gold Mine near Wickenburg, Arizona Territory, circa 1911-14, weighing 391.17 grams, 825 fine gold, with a report copy (est. $25,000-$30,000).

Custer tintype

Original tintype of George Armstrong Custer in a non-political case, 3 ¼ inches by 3 ½ inches, taken in 1865 by Matthew Brady, the famous Civil War-era photographer (est. $8,000-$20,000).

Day 2, on Friday, February 12th , will have Part II of stocks and bonds (to include oil, railroad, transportation, agriculture, banking, brewing and industrial), and firearms, military and political collectibles. The firearms and military portion will feature an original 1865 tintype of Gen. Custer by Matthew Brady in a case, and several Colts with papers, including a Copper Queen Mine security force revolver from 1907 and one from 1876, engraved by Louis D. Nimschke.

Lincoln Peace medal

1862 Lincoln silver Peace Medal, 62.5 mm, About Uncirculated, the only Presidential peace medal issued in a year other than the inauguration date of the president (est. $20,000-$29,000).

Leadville Cook ingot

Leadville (Colo.) presentation silver ingot, inscribed, "From Geo. W. Cook to Col. J. J. Slocum Leadville Col June 1881 965 fine", about 23 troy ounces, 3.5 inches long (est. $20,000-$25,000).

Day 3, on Saturday, February 13th , will feature railroadiana and transportation, numismatics, tokens and sports. The numismatics section will include an 1862 Lincoln silver Peace Medal with Osage provenance, three choice ingots (an 1881 Leadville silver presentation ingot, a Vulture Mine gold ingot and a 1,000-plus-ounce U.S. Assay Office silver ingot), a California tokens collection, wooden nickels, U.S. gold coin "look-alike" counters and so-called dollars.

Day 4, Valentine's Day, features art, Native Americana (to include a collection of 19th century photos and documents, including photos of Apache leaders such as Geronimo and two Apache Scout Medal of Honors winners), philatelic and Part 1 of Bargains & Dealer Specials (stocks and bonds). The philatelic section has an 1883 Sheriff R.H. Paul letter about a stage coach robbery and murder in the Arizona Territory, plus thousands of postcards from the Ken Prag collection.

The art category contains fantastic material across the board, the best Holabird has ever offered, such as David Roberts lithographs (Egypt and the Holy Land, circa 1842-1844), selections from the Ben-T art collection (including a superb map from the reign of Peter the Great, circa 1722), great oil paintings by some prominent early 20th century Russian artists, and other fine pieces.

Also included in Day 4 is the Albert Cauchon sculptures collection, featuring over a thousand Chilmark pewter statues, beautifully detailed, by artists such as Don Polland and Michael Boyett. Some are Native American-themed, some are Western-themed and some are Civil War-era. They range in height from four inches to three feet. It's the largest collection to be offered publicly.

Day 5, Monday, February 15th , will conclude the sale with Part 2 of Bargains & Dealer Specials, to include philatelic items, more numismatics and some general Americana – a total of 708 lots.

Color catalogs are available by calling 1-844-492-2766, or 775-851-1859. Also, anyone owning a collection that might fit into an upcoming Holabird Western Americana Collections auction is encouraged to get in touch. The firm travels extensively throughout the U.S., to see and pick up collections. The company has agents all over America and will travel to inspect most collections.

Holabird Western Americana Collections is always in the hunt for new and major collections to bring to market. It prides itself as being a major source for selling Americana at the best prices obtainable, having sold more than any other similar company in the past decade alone. The firm will have its entire sales database online soon, at no cost – nearly 200,00 lots sold since 2014.

To consign a single piece or a collection, you may call Fred Holabird at 775-851-1859 or 844- 492-2766; or, you can send an e-mail to To learn more about Holabird Western Americana Collections and the 5-day Sweetheart Express Auction planned for Thursday thru Monday, Feb. 11th -15th , please visit Updates are posted often.

For numismatic bibliophiles, there are books and catalogs in lots 3627-3631 and 5396-5400, including a 1940s run of The Numismatist and the three-volume set of Mitchiner on early western European tokens. -Editor

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Here are some lots that caught my eye in the World Banknote Auctions Sale 4, which closes on February 18, 2021. -Editor

Lot 4002: 1921 Angola 1 Escudo

1921 Angola 1 Escudo

Angola 1.1.1921 P-55 PCGS Extremely Fine 45 PPQ 1 Escudo

Lightly circulated low denomination note from Angola. Like all Angola banknotes from this time period finding them in fully original condition with original paper is difficult.

Colorful piece. -Editor

To read the complete lot description, see:
Angola 1.1.1921 P-55 PCGS Extremely Fine 45 PPQ 1 Escudo (

Lot 4024: 1966 Bermuda 5 Pounds

1966 Bermuda 5 Pounds

Bermuda 1.10.1966 P-21d PCGS Gem UNC 66 PPQ 5 Pounds

Unsurpassed in the PCGS population report, this is the final date prior to decimalization of this high denomination issue. While a £10 note was introduced in the mid 1960s £5 still represented quite a bit of money on Bermuda at this time, so few were saved, and gem uncirculated examples of this type are very rare. This one is as fresh and bright as the day it was printed and would make for a great type representative.

Nice condition rare note. The color is a little overwhelming for me. -Editor

To read the complete lot description, see:
Bermuda 1.10.1966 P-21d PCGS Gem UNC 66 PPQ 5 Pounds (

Lot 4066: Costa Rica, Banco Anglo-Costarricense 5 Colones

Costa Rica, Banco Anglo-Costarricense 5 Colones

Costa Rica, Banco Anglo-Costarricense ND (1903-17) P-S122r PMG Gem UNC 65 EPQ 5 Colones (Remainder)

I like the colors on this one. -Editor

To read the complete lot description, see:
Costa Rica, Banco Anglo-Costarricense ND (1903-17) P-S122r PMG Gem UNC 65 EPQ 5 Colones (Remainder) (

Lot 4083: Fiji 5 Pounds Specimen

Fiji 5 Pounds Specimen

Fiji ND (1934-35) P-34cts PMG Superb Gem UNC 67 EPQ 5 Pounds "Color Trial Specimen"

Extremely difficult type to find in any form. This is a color trial specimen with background in purple, with the issued note predominantly green. While any Fiji notes with the portrait of King George V are very scarce, the higher denominations are very seldom offered in any form. Seldom encountered opportunity for the specialist to acquire one of the great rarities in British Commonwealth banknotes.

Great pre-war specimen note. -Editor

To read the complete lot description, see:
Fiji ND (1934-35) P-34cts PMG Superb Gem UNC 67 EPQ 5 Pounds "Color Trial Specimen" (

Lot 4115: 1905 Greenland 25 Ore

1905 Greenland 25 Ore

Greenland 1905 P-4b PMG Choice UNC 64 25 Ore

Greenland had a quite extensive banknote issuance for a country with such a low population. This type, dated 1905 was reportedly issued around the beginning of World War I. It is quite difficult to find, especially in uncirculated condition as seen here.

Rare note in great condition. -Editor

To read the complete lot description, see:
Greenland 1905 P-4b PMG Choice UNC 64 25 Ore (

Lot 4231: 1919 Poland 500 Zlotych

1919 Poland 500 Zlotych

Poland 1919 (ND 1924) P-58 PMG Gem UNC 65 EPQ 500 Zlotych

Pleasing Gem Uncirculated type note from Poland. Issued in the 1920s, this is one of those classic European notes from the 1920s that is surprisingly affordable even in Gem Uncirculated condition.

Nice classic pre-war note. -Editor

To read the complete lot description, see:
Poland 1919 (ND 1924) P-58 PMG Gem UNC 65 EPQ 500 Zlotych (


Here's a selection of interesting or unusual items I came across in the marketplace this week. Tell us what you think of some of these. -Editor

1900 Paris Exposition Medal

1900 Paris Exposition medal obverse 1900 Paris Exposition medal reverse

The Exposition Universelle of 1900, better known in English as the 1900 Paris Exposition, was a world's fair held in Paris, France, from 14 April to 12 November 1900, to celebrate the achievements of the past century and to accelerate development into the next. The fair, visited by nearly 50 million, displayed many technological innovations, including the Grande Roue de Paris Ferris wheel, the moving sidewalk, diesel engines, talking films, escalators, and the telegraphone (the first magnetic audio recorder). It also brought international attention to the Art Nouveau style. Additionally, it showcased France as a major colonial power through numerous pavilions built on the hill of the Trocadero Palace. Major structures remaining from the Exposition include the Grand Palais, the Petit Palais, the Pont Alexandre III, the Gare d'Orsay railroad station (now the Musée d'Orsay) and two original entrances of Paris Métro stations by Hector Guimard.

Found on eBay. -Editor

To read the complete lot description, see:
1900 Olympic Paris Rare French Art Nouveau medal to Jewish Company by Chaplain (

1914-D Lincoln Cent

1914-D Lincoln Cent obverse 1914-D Lincoln Cent reverse

Pristine problem free key date Lincoln.

I'm sure a lot of our readers remember filling Whitman albums as a kid, looking and looking for those key dates needed for completion. Well, if you still have a hole where a 1914-D belongs, here's your chance to fill it with a decent VF. Found via Harry Laibstain Rare Coins February 4, 2021 email. -Editor

To read the complete lot description, see:
1914-D 1C PCGS VF25 (

1808 Half Eagle

1808 Half Eagle obverse 1808 Half Eagle reverse

This is a lovely example of a scarce, early type coin. From an original mintage of just 55,578, this is one of just 137 estimated examples to survive in mint state. Luminous and sharply struck this piece displays appealing, even golden coloration and fantastic eye appeal considering the grade. This coin would be a great fit for a type set as it's a strong, clear example of the type without a rare date or astronomical grade inflating the price.

If the 1822 half eagle isn't in your future, consider this 1808. Very nice coin in tonight's David Lawrence Rare Coins sale. The text is from their February 4th email. -Editor

To read the complete lot description, see:
1808 $5 PCGS MS61 (

California Gold Tokens in a Case

California Gold Tokens in a Case

Two California Fractional Gold Tokens in a 19th Century Case, one likely an 1852 half dollar, BG-1076, and an 1852 half dollar, BG-962 or BG-963.

I've never seen California gold in a case like this. Interesting. -Editor

To read the complete lot description, see:
Two California Fractional Gold Tokens in a 19th Century Case (

Signed Joseph W Barr Note

Signed Joseph W Barr Note

World Banknotes - USA - Joseph W Barr - Signed 'To Lloyds Bank Good Luck' Dollar Note. Circa 1970s AD. Series 1963 B, serial number E 24710727 G. Obv: Washington vignette; bearing an ink inscription 'TO LLOYDS BANK / GOOD LUCK' in two lines to top right with ink autograph signature of Joseph W Barr to lower right. Rev: emblems and text. 0.93 grams, 155 x 66mm. ("). Property of a Kent, UK, collector; acquired on the UK coin market. Joseph Barr was Secretary of the US Treasury at the time so this note bears both his printed signature and his autograph.

I came across this note last week at Timeline Auctions. The lot did not sell in the earlier November 2020 sale, but their staff informs me it will be relisted in their next sale at the end of this month.

While many people once (and still do) save notes with Barr's printed signature, they are not rare despite his short-lived tenure as Secretary of the Treasury. I don't believe I've seen a note signed in ink by Barr though, so this is an interesting and probably scarce item. Do any of our readers collect notes autographed by the Treasurer and Secretary?

Here's a summary of Barr's short-lived tenure. -Editor

According to United States law, the signature of the acting Secretary of the Treasury must appear on every piece of currency. During the final days of President Lyndon B. Johnson's administration, his Secretary of the Treasury, Henry H. Fowler, resigned. Since no new currency could be printed without an acting Secretary, President Johnson quickly appointed Joseph W. Barr to this cabinet post. Since Johnson's term was about to expire, Barr's tenure would last only 28 days! It was the shortest tenure in the history of the United States Treasury!

To read the complete article, see:

To read the complete lot description, see:
World Banknotes - USA - Joseph W Barr - Signed 'To Lloyds Bank Good Luck' Dollar Note (


The Brand specimen of the legendary 1822 half eagle, the only example in private hands, will be offered next month by Stack's Bowers. Here's the press release. -Editor

SBG_1822_HalfEagle_Obv SBG_1822_HalfEagle_Rev

Stack's Bowers Galleries will present at public auction the finest known 1822 half eagle, the D. Brent Pogue Collection coin. It is a legendary American treasure, the only example in private hands of what is acknowledged as the key to a collection of American gold coins. This exceptional coin will be featured in the firm's March 23-26, 2021 auction in Las Vegas, Nevada.

There are only three known specimens of the 1822 half eagle. Certified as AU-50 by PCGS, the Pogue coin is the finest of the three. As for opportunities to purchase an example of this date, they are just as rare. There have been only two occasions in American numismatic history in which an 1822 half eagle has sold at auction! They were:

In 1906 at the H.P. Smith Collection Sale.
In 1982 at our sale of the Louis E. Eliasberg Gold Coin Collection Sale.

A notable offering took place sometime before 1941, the year that B. Max Mehl showcased an 1822 half eagle in his William Forrester Dunham Sale with this headline: "The rarest and Most Valuable Coin in the Entire United States series! (Probably the Rarest Coin in the World). The 1822 $5.00 Gold!"

It never crossed the auction block! No bidders had a chance! It was so important to Mehl and so valuable that he sold it privately before the sale to Charles O. Williams, a Cincinnati insurance executive. That coin later passed to Josiah K. Lilly of pharmaceutical fame, and was donated with the Lilly Collection of gold coins to the National Numismatic Collection in the Smithsonian Institution. The other example, also in the Smithsonian, was from the Mint Cabinet Collection, where it had been since the 1830s. In his 1979 study, United States Gold Coins, An Analysis of Auction Records, Volume IV, Half Eagles 1795-1929, David Akers made this definitive statement: "The legendary 1822 half eagle is the most famous and desirable United States gold coin. It traded hands at fantastic prices when other great rarities that are now worth six figures were bringing mere pittances."

In a word the 1822 half eagle is legendary. Most of the great figures in American numismatic history never owned one! Many if not most have been born and died without ever having had the chance compete for one at auction. J.P. Morgan, who had unlimited finances and who later gave much of his coin collection to the American Numismatic Society, desired to own an 1822 half eagle and offered a tremendous sum for the Dunham coin—multiples of any price any coin had ever sold for anywhere in the world—but was refused.

The example offered in the March 2021 Stack's Bowers Galleries auction was acquired by Virgil Brand in 1899 and held in his vast collection until sold by his heirs in 1945. At that time it entered the unparalleled cabinet of Louis E. Eliasberg, Sr., and became part of the only complete collection of U.S. coins ever formed. When the gold coins from the Eliasberg Collection were auctioned in 1982, the successful buyer was the young D. Brent Pogue in the early stages of building what would become the most valuable coin collection in numismatic history! This coin was considered a family treasure when it was offered in May 2016, prior to the untimely passing of D. Brent Pogue in August 2019.

Today the 1822 half eagle stands at the peak of American rarities in private hands—with just one coin available. Opportunities to acquire an example happen only very seldom, and generations pass without even the most well-financed collectors, dealers, and museums having an opportunity to own one.

The 1822 half eagle will be featured in Stack's Bowers Galleries' Rarities Night session on March 25, 2021 at the Bellagio Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. For more information visit or call 800-458-4646.

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Here's the third and final installment of Ron Guth's blog posts on the current whereabouts of Barber Half Dollars once owned by collector Louis Eliasberg. -Editor

1911-D Barber HAlf Dollar
Image courtesy

This is the third and final installment of a three-part series where I identify many of the Barber Half Dollars that were sold in 1997 as part of the Louis Eliasberg, Sr. collection. This installment will look at the dates from 1910 to 1915 and provide updated provenances for as many of the coins as possible.

Eliasberg obtained most of his Barber Half Dollars from the Clapp family collection, started by John M. Clapp in the late 1800's and continued by his son, John H. Apparently, J.M. had an arrangement with the mints to obtain coins from the year of issue, including Proof coins and those made for circulation. Judging by the quality of the coins, it appears that someone selected coins for the Clapps with great care. The Clapps eschewed circulation strikes when Proofs were available. Thus most, if not all, of the Barber Half Dollars in the Clapp and Eliasberg collections from the Philadelphia Mint are Proofs, while all of the branch mint examples are high-grade circulation strikes. As a result, there is no such thing as a complete set of circulation strike Barber Half Dollars in either the Clapp or the Eliasberg collections and it was left to later collectors, such as Dr. Thaine Price, Dr. Duckor, Dale Friend, John Hugon, Dr. Shireman, and others to accomplish that goal.

Many of the Proof Eliasberg Half Dollars have been difficult or impossible to locate. Either the Proofs went into a collection that has yet to be discovered, or more likely is my guess, they may have been conserved such that any identifying markers, especially toning patterns, have been removed. Bright white Proof coins are among the most difficult to match up with prior appearances, as there is simply very little data to compare.

My sense in working on this project is that the quality of the coins in the Clapp collection seems to have dropped off after John H. took over the collection. He appears to have discontinued purchasing coins directly from the Mints, as his father had done for so many years.

If you are aware of additional information on any of these coins or any of the missing ones in previous installments, please contact me at Thanks in advance for your assistance.

The provenances for all the Barber Half Dollars after 1905 were not recorded in the 1997 sale of the Eliasberg coins. John M. Clapp died on October 24, 1906 and left his coins to his son, John H. Clapp. Apparently, the son was not as meticulous a record-keeper as his father. Therefore, none of the following coins have a pre-Eliasberg provenance, though they most likely came from the Clapp collection.

To read the complete article, see:
Looking For Louis Eliasberg's Barber Half Dollars, Part III (

To read the earlier E-Sylum articles, see:

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Jay Turner published a PCGS blog article January 29, 2021 based on an obscure fact found in William Silber's 2019 book, The Story of Silver - How Morgan dollars became Indian rupees. -Editor

India 1919 Calcutta Mint Rupee
India 1919 Calcutta Mint Rupee

Little thought is given by many on the previous incarnations of the metal that the coins they have once were. Yet, truth be told, the metallic content of many coins cannot be traced to their origins if their sources were previously melted coins – with some exceptions. One such exception entails the silver rupee coins from India, where many of the silver issues of George V after 1917 can trace their silver content back to the United States Morgan Dollar.

With the outbreak of World War I, silver coin shortages caused many issues in Europe and other parts of the world. With economies that were dependent on the silver standard, such as the British Colony of India, this was a significant problem. Because of the scarceness of silver, India was having a hard time redeeming its currency for silver upon demand. Nevada Senator Key Pittman introduced the now well-known Pittman Act in 1918, which would allow the United States to loan Great Britain silver bullion from melting United States silver dollars held in Treasury Department vaults. The Pittman Act called for not more than 350,000,000 silver dollars to be converted into bullion and sold to Great Britain at the rate of $1 (plus mint charges) per ounce. With the passage of the Pittman Act, 270,232,722 silver dollars in the Treasury Department vaults in the San Francisco and Philadelphia Mints were melted, with their silver being shipped to Calcutta to be re-coined into India Rupee coins featuring the effigy of King George V.

Besides the melting of over 270 million Morgan Dollars, the Pittman Act had other consequences. The Act required that an equal number of Silver Certificate banknotes be removed from circulation due to the inability of redemption because the equivalent silver dollars were no longer in United States holdings. From this, the first Federal Reserve Bank notes were printed in $1 and $2 denominations. Pittman, always the promoter for Nevada silver mining, also required the United States to repurchase the silver at a fixed price of $1 per ounce and the equivalent number of silver dollars to be recoined. This occurred starting in 1921, with the first Morgan Dollar coin to be struck since 1904 and also led to the introduction of the United States Peace Dollar, which was minted from 1921 until 1935.

The next time you examine a 1919 India Rupee coin, you are most likely holding what used to be a Morgan Dollar, likely a 1903 or 1904 issue, that – due to the actions of a Nevadan senator – was melted and shipped to India for the production of this piece.

To read the complete article, see:
How Morgan Dollars Became Indian Rupees (

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:


Fred Holabird submitted this research on the 1862 Lincoln silver Peace Medal in his upcoming sale. Thanks! -Editor

Lincoln Peace medal

1862 Lincoln silver Peace Medal. 62.5 mm. About Uncirculated, with clean fields retaining mint luster, and only slight wear to the high points of Lincoln's har. Virtually all of the hairlines are showing, something not seen on most of the other similar medals that have appeared at auction.

This important silver peace medal is the smaller of two sizes made by the US Mint. Dated 1862, it is the only Presidential peace medal issued in a year other than the inauguration date of the president. This medal is x-Stacks c1993, lot 1518 and is part of a known census published of twenty two 1862 Lincoln medals, of which at least 6 are in institutional homes. Two hundred of the 1862 Lincoln medals were made at the Philadelphia Mint, with 100 of each size. Medals were given to tribal Chiefs, or sometimes to Indians involved in friendly treaties by the various regional superintendencies.

The obverse of the medal is signed "S. Ellis. DEL. SC.", while the reverse is "J. Willson. DEL. & SC." "DEL" is an abbreviation for the Latin delineavit ("he drew it"), and "SC" is an abbreviation for Sculpsit ("he carved/sculpted it" [engraved]). Salathiel Ellis had the contract for the Lincoln medals. $1250 was allotted for the silver, and Ellis agreed to make the medals for $3,250. Only silver medals were made. Approval from Congress did not come until July, 1862. The Mint was paid in advance for the medals. It appears the first of the medals, 5 large pieces, were delivered to Pawnee Indian agent B. F. Lushbaugh. Interestingly, only eight of those original medals were struck, because the reverse die broke on the eighth medal. Willson had died during the Congressional approval process, so his name only appears on the first eight of the large medals, and was removed for the remainder of the run after the new die(s) were made. In March, 1863, the remainder of the large medals were struck, some delivered to Indians visiting Washington. All of the silver medals carry Willson's name. This was the final medal of Ellis' career, and the task was passed on to Anthony Paquet of pattern US $20 gold coin and numerous Mint medals fame.

Some of the first of the Lincoln medals were given to Iowa (Ioway) and Sac and Fox tribe members at the request of Indian Agent John Burbank in 1862.

Awarding of the medals to Indians was an uncertain affair. While Congress explicitly wrote that the medals were for "distribution of medals among the chiefs of the Indian tribes" , they were sometimes given to "friendly Indians." At one time, a delegation of Osage Indians visiting Washington received canes, a number of which are still in existence."

Peace medals were a trophy of unequalled excellence to Indians. The very nature of how highly prized they were is easily seen on the many original period sketches of Native Americans through time including Catlin. Schoolcraft mentions them as well. "For years it has been the custom for the President, …, to present Indians with silver medals. The tokens are highly valued by amicable tribes," as written in the Chicago Tribune in 1865. Every great Indian Chief had one or more peace medals, especially the great Black Kettle, the most powerful Indian Chief of the mid-19 th century, and unarguably the most influential.

A Treaty among the Blackfeet and other tribes in October 1855 resulted in the presentation of several Peace Medals to tribal Chiefs. "…medals were presented to the Chiefs, with speeches by the Commissioner, exhorting them to keep their promises to their Great Father, and control their young braves. These medals were deeply cherished by the Indians. Eighty-five years after the treaty, one of the medals was discovered in the hands of an aged Indian who lived in utter destitution but who refused to part with the medal at any price. It was the most cherished of the family heirlooms."

This 1862 Lincoln Peace Medal has a wonderful appearance megascopicly. Under a microscope, however, can be seen a faint and fine hand scratched "Osage Indian" just above Lincoln's head to the right. A prior cataloger called this "graffiti."

Sometimes what one numismatist sees as "graffiti", another sees as provenance. Such is the case with a 1792 half-disme, in which "graffiti" has been analyzed in detail using the latest scientific equipment. This results of this astonishing study may prove to be an important discovery, showing that not all scratches are "graffiti." In the case of this 1862 Lincoln medal, the "graffiti" is an absolute link to, and proof of provenance, which renders the medal far more important than one of the 100 medals made, with most (nearly all) lacking any provenance whatsoever.

The link to Osage Indians tells us that only one treaty was (attempted) signed during Lincoln's presidency. An Indian agent negotiated a treaty between the Government and the Osage in Kansas that was complicated, but sold a part of the Osage land to the US, with the monies going into a trust for the Osage, and other considerations, including stoppage of attacks to settlers and emigrants. That treaty was signed August 29, 1863. But Congress put on the brakes, and politics took over, stone-walling the formal completion of the treaty, and effectively "pigeon-holing" the treaty indefinitely. It was not the last time this proposed treaty would meet with resistance.

For the next two years, Col. Ellijah Sells, the Superintendent of Indian Affairs of the Southern Superintendency, and colleagues tried to refine the proposed treaty, and in so doing, appear to have worked with the Osage and Government officials to assure all that they would end up with a treaty that was not a "take all" affair, which had been so typical of many of the Indian treaties of the early nineteenth century.

The treaty with the Osage was exceptionally important. During the Civil War, the Osage and other tribes in Kansas saw their lands overrun by emigrants and settlers. It was out of control, and to make matters worse, Kansas was right in between the Union forces and Confederacy. While most Osage "sided" with the Union, there were a few "outcasts" siding with the Confederacy, probably the result of force and will of survival. The Confederate run at Kansas ended in a bloody battle with Quantrill's raiders, who suffered a massive defeat. A treaty was badly needed to understand and underscore who owned what, and where things were going to go in the near future. During the 1860s, there were three wars: the Civil War, and the war between tribes and the Union settlers, and the war between the tribes and the Confederates. It needed fixing.

In a treaty between the Osage and the US in 1825, the Osage had given up a lot of their ancestral ground, mostly in Kansas. The tribe felt the treaty was unjust and had no interest in a new treaty unless certain goals were accomplished. The proposed treaty of 1863 addressed those "problems", but politics intervened. The fix came on September 29, 1865 with a new treaty, the only treaty between the Osage and the US Government during the Lincoln presidency. While the actual signing of the treaty came after Lincoln was killed, the work was done under the Lincoln presidency.

The Treaty of Sept. 29, 1865 became known as the Canville Treaty of 1865. It was signed at a small trading post run by A. B. Canville, who made sure he was paid through the treaty for past work and supplies. The treaty was signed by D. N. Cooley, Commissioner of Indian Affairs, Elijah Sells, and the chiefs of the Great and Little Osage tribes. The Chief of the Little Osages was Me-tso-shin-ca (Little Bear); White Hair, Principal Chief Osage Nation; Chief Big Hill band Ta-wah-she-he; Chief Clermont band, Clermont. Each chief had a successor present (Little Chief), and more than fifty witnesses and members of various tribes were present and signed as witnesses. An Osage interpreter was present as was G.C. Snow, the Neosho Indian agent.

The treaty was monumental. In it, the Osage sold the US land for $900,000 to be put into a Trust for the Osage, a huge amount at the time, and possibly the largest sale of Indian lands to date. It further allowed for the future sale of two million acres to be placed into that Trust. Most of the newspaper articles on the treaty were confusing, probably poorly understood by whites. The Osage quickly used part of this money to buy more land. They bought 1.57 million acres from the Cherokee Nation in 1866 which became the Osage Reservation in Oklahoma Territory, which became autonomous in 1906. At least one source claimed the Osage were the wealthiest of all American Indian tribes.

Once the Treaty was signed, and formally approved by Congress, the "deal" was done. But… S.J. Crawford, the Kansas Governor disputed the Treaty, claiming it was invalid, and that the Treaty of 1825 did not give the Osage all the land that was part of the 1865 Treaty. The US Land Commissioner J. M. Edmunds argued that the Treaty was correct in all respects.

This Peace Medal was handed out to one of the four Osage Chiefs. While it was awarded during Andrew Johnson's presidency, the Johnson medals designed by Paquet were not made and issued until December 23, 1865.

Summary and Conclusion
This silver 1862 Lincoln Peace medal with "Osage Indian" inscribed lightly on the obverse belonged to one of the chiefs of the Osage tribe who signed the September 29, 1865 Canville Treaty in Kansas. There was no other treaty among the Osage during Lincoln's presidency, and no other event discovered in research that would warrant the awarding of a Lincoln Peace Medal to an Osage member. As such, it was owned and cherished by one of four great Osage chiefs, all named above. It may be the single remaining artifact of that Peace Treaty, and is one of a very few such medals left in existence.

For readability I've removed footnotes, but these are preserved in the lot description. -Editor

To read the complete lot description, see:
3595a Lincoln Silver Peace Medal, Julian 39, Prucha 51, Belden 54. Osage Indian Award [131549] (

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Fred Holabird also submitted this description of the 1881 Leadville Presentation Silver Ingot. Thanks. Fascinating item.-Editor

Leadville Presentation Silver Ingot, Cook to Slocum, 1881

Leadville Cook ingot "From Geo. W. Cook to Col. J. J. Slocum Leadville Col June 1881 965 fine". About 23 troy ounces, 3.5" long, 1 1/8" high and 1 3/8" wide, trapezoidal in the classic manner. No maker or assayer shown, as typical of a presentation ingot. This ingot was previously unknown to the writer, coming from a Boston family collection.

Exceptional engraved Leadville silver ingot – one of the three known different western precious metal ingots with an engraved mountain scene on it. This ingot is further important because it ties two great Americans- George W. Cook, a one-time Leadville Mayor, turned Colorado railroad magnate and Russel Sage, one of the wealthiest American railroad financiers.

George W. Cook (1851-1916) enlisted in the Indiana Voluntary Infantry at the age of 15 after running away from home. He was a regimental clerk and a drummer boy, a passion he kept his entire life. He went back to school after the war, moved to Chicago, where he took his first quality job with the Louisville & New Albany & Chicago Railroad. Somehow, that job led him to Leadville later that year where he joined Denver & Rio Grande Railroad as Division Superintendent. A popular man about town, Cook was elected Mayor of Leadville, serving from 1885-1887.

Cook quickly learned the value of becoming and serving as "agent" for a number of major companies doing business in and out of Leadville. In 1888 he became a sales agent for the booming giant coal company of Colorado Coal & Iron. He was also appointed agent for the Missouri-Pacific Railroad in their Colorado-Utah district. That year, an Immigration Bureau was formed and he was elected vice president.

Active in veterans causes, he became Commander of the GAR for Colorado and Wyoming in 1891-2. Cook did volunteer work for the GAR for the remainder of his life. He was instrumental in forming the Geo. W. Cook's Drum Corps of Denver which later changed its name to the VFW Band of Colorado, still active today. Still popular, Cook was elected as a republican Congressman for Colorado in 1906, serving 1907-1909.

In 1895, Cook was appointed as Assistant Manager of the Colorado Midland Railroad, which was moving an office to Leadville. Still active with the Denver & Rio Grande Railroad, Cook led a crew of 800 men to clear the railroad of deep snow during a coal miners strike in February, 1899.

Cook was reportedly active in mining, particularly in the 1890s. His vast experience in the background of the precious metals mining scene led him to understand the demand for another metal, manganese. In 1899 Cook signed a contract with the Illinois Steel Works for 60,000 tons of manganese to be shipped from the Garden City Mine in California Gulch at Leadville.

Of equal importance is the fact that his wife was very active in the Women's Rights movement, making speeches throughout Colorado pushing for equality in the work place, among other things.

In life, we get coincidences, and we've got one here. There are two different George W, Cooks in Colorado political history. The first was Territorial Treasurer and a resident of Denver in 1859, as shown in the Denver City and Aurora Directory of 1859. Interestingly, that Cook is not mentioned in many of the references of Colorado pioneers, nor in the classic biographical works of Colorado. He does appear later in newspapers as General Geo. W. Cook.

Col. J. J. Slocum was the brother of the wife of Russel Sage (Olivia Slocum Sage), one of America's wealthiest railroad and telegraph financiers. Slocum's sister was Sage's second wife, and like Mrs. Cook, was exceptionally active in Women's rights. Armed with the money to do something about it, she founded the Russell Sage University, built many schools, helped even more with powerful cash donations, and spearheaded education of Native Americans.

References: contained dozens of articles used here briefly. The Leadville newspapers are not yet scanned. Interestingly, Cook is not listed in Stone, Hafen or any of the other classic Colorado biographical or historical works I consulted (more than 30).

To read the complete lot description, see:
Leadville Cook Presentation Silver Ingot [131547] (


There are still nice finds to be had if one is willing to take a gamble on bulk lots. Here's an excerpt from the story of a collector who made some interesting finds. I like the pictured British Empire Exhibition medal. -Editor

1924 British Empire Exhibition medal
1924 British Empire Exhibition medal

While trawling a certain auction website, I came across a large token collection at the starting price of 99p with £3 postage. There was over 1.5kg and I saw a few items I liked the look of so placed a bid of £5.67, strange bid I know but it has been a lucky for me before. I moved on and didn't give it another thought. About 3 days later a ping when off on my phone and I had won, in the end paying the princely sum of £5.60 +£3 postage. I was happy enough and thought it would be a nice little lot to go through.

There was the normal common pieces like the Bell Fruit Machine tokens and Eurocoins, but also quite a lot of interesting looking bits. First to grab my attention was a beautiful looking 1924 British Trades Exhibition token, one I had been looking for for sometime. Fantastic I thought, that has made the cost worth it right there. A nice little £6 token. Next I saw a Cincinnati Beer token one of the things I had spotted online. So I picked it up and laid it aside. It went on like this for the better part of an hour. Sorting, putting into packets or into my standard machine token album.

So with piles of tokens and other odds and ends still in front of me I moved and knocked the table scattering them all across the floor. So down I went to pick them all up when I spotted something I hadn't seen previously. Staring up at me was a little bronze coin with the Britannia Moneta logo. For anyone who doesn't know this is the logo used by the Royal Mint for their Trial Coins. So I placed it back onto the top and picked up all the other tokens as quickly as I could so I could get back to the little coin.

I picked it up and turned it over and to my astonishment it was the Cincinnati Beer token logo on the other side, the one I had saw earlier. I was over the moon but had never seen anything like this. So onto the web I went. I trawled site after site, page after page and nothing.

Cincinnati Press set-up piece Britannia

So I posted a query up on a few of the online forums, again nothing. It started to look like I was never going to find any information at all about it. So I decided then to go for a different approach and began going through past auctions. It took a while but eventually it came up trumps. Lot 480, 28 September 2005 | Dix Noonan Webb as part of the THE JOANNA TANSLEY COLLECTION OF PATTERNS, PROOFS AND COINING TRIALS.

Described as a : PRESS SET-UP PIECE [in conjunction with Cincinnati Inc], in bronze, Britannia seated right, hand-striking a coin, BRITANNIA MONETA, rev. from Cincinnati's advertising check, IF A CINCINNATI SALESMAN CAN'T MATCH THIS COIN HE'LL BUY YOU A BEER, edge plain, 20.5mm, 4.50g/12h. Extremely fine and extremely rare.

To read the complete article, see:
An Unusual Numismatic Find – By Brian Harrison (

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A holocaust survivor medal from Belgium was recently featured on the Antiques Roadshow. I was unaware these existed. -Editor

1955 Belgium Holocaust Survivor Medal obverse 1955 Belgium Holocaust Survivor Medal reverse

The antique fan asked the owner: "So I understand you have a mystery. You found something and you don't know what it is. Where did you find it?"

The owner told: "Unfortunately my mum passed away in February this year and while we were sorting out her things we came across the medal that belonged to my grandad Tommy, which was her father.

"So it's all been a bit of a mystery because we couldn't find out why he actually got the medal."

Mark then quizzed the owner's daughter, as he asked: "Do you know anything about it?"

"All I know is my great-grandad Tommy used to travel to Austen quite a lot but aside from that nothing," she shared.

"Did he go often like maybe once a year? Some sort of a reunion of some description," Mark suggested.

"We believe so," the owner shared and the expert explained: "So the medal you've got is a medal that was made in 1955 and that's when he's been given this.

"He's not been awarded this. It's been given to him as a present, it's something that he does on a yearly basis as far as I can work out where he's taking back old soldiers.

"And the group in Belgium he has affiliated himself with are a very rare group of people because they are concentration camps survivors.

"Now this is in Belgium, in Breendonk just outside Brussels, and like all other concentration camps it's just as horrible."

"It had two gas chambers, it had firing post to execute people, it had gallows to hang people and it had torture chambers and it's still there," Mark continued.

"Now your medallion is the 10th anniversary medal for the liberation of concentration camps and they were given to people, Belgians who had been in concentration camps, so the medal you actually have on the front of it shows a prisoner wearing a concentration camp uniform.

"But on the back, this bit in the middle is a triangle with a B, and that is the badge that was sown on the concentration camp uniform to show that you were Belgian, it could have a P for Polish.

"Now we always give you a valuation on the Antiques Roadshow," he added.

"But we don't give valuations to Holocaust things because there is no price you can put on what someone went through to be awarded that medal.

These are poor images - screen captures from the BBC show. Does anyone have better images or information on these pieces? -Editor

To read the complete article, see:
Antiques Roadshow expert refuses to value WWII medal over its distressing origin (

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John Kraljevich posted the first of a planned series of Black History Month articles on Facebook this week. The first one highlights the 1971 Black American Day medal. I hadn't seen one of these before - thanks! -Editor

Black American Day medal obverse Black American Day medal reverse

In 1971, California held its "first annual Black American Day" on March 5, 1971. This brass medal was struck to mark the occasion. The obverse shows the map of California superimposed with a stylized shield of Kenya's Maasai people and the legend "Be All You Can Be." On the reverse, the words "People's Gold" is placed within a wreath with the dates 1619 and 1971. Yes, the date 1619, when the first Africans arrived in Virginia, has always held special meaning.

The California Black American Day holiday was conceived by Assemblyman Willie Brown, later mayor of San Francisco, in 1969, the year he was first elected to the California Assembly. He initially wanted the holiday to be celebrated on January 14, to mark Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday, but that idea failed to gain support. (King's birthday became a Federal holiday in 1983.) More than a year later, Brown's bill passed, with his Black American Day slated for March 5, the day Crispus Attucks, an African-American, was killed at the 1770 Boston Massacre. It was signed into law by Governor Ronald Reagan, who also signed the Martin Luther King, Jr. Day observance into Federal law as President, an ironic twist to the legacy of the man who gave a 1980 campaign speech on "states rights" at the Neshoba County Fair in Philadelphia, Mississippi, which was then famous for just one thing: a 1964 triple murder of civil rights activists.

While Brown's successful passage of Black American Day legislation was a victory for the recognition of African-American history and culture in California and nationwide, one group did not celebrate it: the Black Panthers. The Panthers had already conceived March 5, 1971 as their "Revolutionary Intercommunal Day of Solidarity" to bring attention to the BPP's political prisoners, including Chairman Bobby Seale and Angela Davis. They gathered at the Oakland Coliseum that night for an event to raise interest in the plights of the imprisoned Panthers. The musical act was the Grateful Dead.

This medal issued to mark Black American Day is scarce, but not worth very much. I paid less than $20 for it. All this month, I'll be showcasing other items from my collection of African-American related coins, medals, tokens, paper money, and related items, many of which are as interesting as this even though their value isn't much more. Feel free to share, ask questions, and look for further installments every day this month.

Black American Day article

I reordered this to put the numismatic part first, but John's introduction is important, so here it is in its entirety. -Editor

Black History Month, 2021. Day 1.
Those of you who have been Facebook friends of mine for awhile know February is pretty special to me. Black History Month, celebrated annually since 1970, has enabled me — and historians of every description — to discover stories we're not taught in school, to celebrate forgotten Americans who deserve to be remembered, and to string together narratives of how the unique tribulations and victories of Americans of African descent are not just African-American history, but are really the essence of what American history is. It's a story of the triumphs America makes possible and the frictions it makes inevitable. This is history we all share. It's my history, it's your history, it's your ancestors' history. African-American history is American history — it's just American history that got woven out of the narrative just as African-Americans often got woven out of the American Dream.

Black History Month traces its lineage back to Negro History Week, a creation of historian Carter G. Woodson in 1926. Woodson is the namesake of the University of Virginia's Carter G. Woodson Institute for African-American and African Studies, the academic outlet that provided me my first introduction to the field. Woodson, whose parents were born enslaved, faced an uphill battle, as African-American history was not just entirely missing from contemporary texts, but Lost Cause ideologues sought to inject a counternarrative literally anywhere they could.

Woodson chose the second week of February, the week both Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass celebrated their birthdays. February became popularly recognized as Black History Month following the first celebration in 1970 at Kent State University.

To read the complete article, see:
Black History Month, 2021. Day 1. (

Here are some additional posts in John's series. -Editor

Charleston Servant Slave Hire badge 1885 Five Cents Labor token
Frank Miller Jr Savings Programs That Make Cents

To read the complete articles, see:
Black History Month, 2021. Day 2. (
Black History Month, 2021. Day 3. (
Black History Month, 2021. Day 4.  (
Black History Month, 2021. Day 5. (
Black History Month, 2021. Day 6. ( )


Here are some additional items in the media this week that may be of interest. -Editor

Lessen 'North York Moors' Collection Results

The Gazette & Herald published an article about the results of the Dix Noonan Webb sale of the Marvin Lessen 'North York Moors' collection of British coins. -Editor

Lessoen colleciton medal

The collection, containing more than 520 rare and historic coins, has been sold in four parts over the past three years.

It belonged to collector Marvin Lessen who came to live in Scarborough in 1962 from America.

He spent his career in the aerospace and defence industries, working in various locations in Europe and North America.

Mr Lessen is known to have started collecting British coins when he arrived in Scarborough at the age of 28, having been born in Baltimore, Maryland, in 1934.

He worked across Europe and North America and had collected coins, stamps, arms and armour from an early age.

Mr Lessen was well known among coin dealers in London and the North East and renowned among collectors in Britain and America, writing many articles for the British Numismatist Journal.

To read the complete article, see: (

World Money Fair 2021 Digital Event

The 2021 World Money Fair will be a digital event. Here's a World Mint News Blog article by Michael Alexander. -Editor

World Money Fair 2021 World Money Fair — now in its 50th year — is one of the coin industry's most sought-after events, in terms of participants and attendees, and opened this year on schedule as a virtual and digital show. The WMF was officially opened this morning by Barbara Balz, managing director, who participates every year in the ceremonial opening of the WMF along with honourary president, Dr. Albert Beck, and the fair's guest host. On this occasion, she read a short speech with a backdrop of the WMF's logo for 2021, outlining that although we are not able to meet personally in Berlin, the show continues, and in a digital format, with many elements such as the technical and media forums taking place online.

The benefit of conducting the fair online is that those who are not able to ordinarily attend the show in Berlin in-person can now follow the activities and discussions online, as there will be links to both the technical and media forums.

To read the complete article, see:
World Money Fair: 50th exhibition opens as a digital event for 2021 (

Teutoburg Forest Coin Finds
Kavan Ratnatunga writes:

Teutoburg Forest Coin Find "My son Rhajiv sent this link to a recent video on the origin of Germany, how coin finds discussed in the video after about 27min located the Battleground after 2000 years."

Thanks. Check it out. -Editor

To watch the video, see:
The Conspiracy Behind The Teutoburg Forest Massacre | Lost Legions of Varus | Odyssey (

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