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ACCent: The Monthly Newsletter of the Anchorage Coin Club

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Volume 10, Number 8

August 1997

August Membership Meeting
Wed., August 6, 1997 Central Lutheran Church

7:30 PM Meeting


 

FROM YOUR EDITORS

Since your Chief Editor will be on vacation to do a spot of fishing for a couple of weeks, this month's newsletter is being mailed out a bit early.

For those members and families who attended the club's summer picnic-'meeting on Sunday afternoon, July 6th. a wonderful time was enjoyed by all. Somewhere between 25-50 people enjoyed a nice summer afternoon with barbecued chicken. teriyaki meat, hamburgers, hotdogs, salads, and desserts galore as the main fair. The main event was a treasure hunt for our YNs (Young Numismatists) and their families. Numismatic clues were hidden throughout Kinkaid Park (where the event was held) with the YNs looking for pieces of a treasure map that would lead them to the ultimate prize of a chest filled with numismatic coins and paper currency.

The organizers of the picnic had figured it would take one hour for the YNs to solve all of the clues needed to find the hidden treasure chest. As it turned out, they figured it out in about 40 minutes...which is a pretty good indication of their numismatic knowledge. The coins and paper currency were evenly divided among all of the YNs (including their brothers and sisters).

1922 $10 Gold Certificate Front

1922 $10 Gold Certificate Front

Special thanks go out to all of the coin dealers who are members of our club. They graciously donated all of the coins and paper currency for the treasure chest....which was fairly large in size. Again...thanks.

The club's picnic was also our club's July membership meeting. Enough raffle tickets were sold for the club's raffle coin, an 1871 Liberty Seated Dollar in VF-20 condition. Since the picnic organizers did not have all of the raffle tickets that were sold in their possession, it was decided to have the formal raffle drawing for the coin at our August 6th membership meeting. So...there is still lime on the August 6th meeting date to purchase any final raffle tickets. (Editors comment: This coin would make a wonderful addition to anyone's numismatic collection). Raffle tickets are $5 per ticket for this coin.

1922 $10 Gold certificate- Reverse

1922 $10 Gold certificate- Reverse

We also had time for a bullet coin auction on ten lots of coins. Regrettably, we do not have a list of the ten coins that were auctioned. What your editors do know is that three of the lots were 1950 Proof coins consisting of a Lincoln cent. Jefferson nickel, and Roosevelt dime. There was a Liberty Head bust dime dated 1825 and a Barber dime as two of the other lots.

So....a fine time was had by all. Nature cooperated with a fine, sunny Summer afternoon with a cool breeze. Come next year we hope to see another great turnout for our club's 1998 Summer picnic.......

1922 $20 Gold Certificate Front

1922 $20 Gold Certificate Front

 

MEMBERSHIP NEWS

Schedule of Events of the Month of August

1. Monthly Membership Meeting:

August 6th (Wednesday) at 7:30 PM at the Central Lutheran Church. Club members and general public welcomed. M this particular meeting, we would like members to bring in coins that they would like to show, trade, or sell. There will be a bullet auction for only 10 coin lots. Members wishing to submit coins for the bullet auction can bring them to the meeting.

2. There will be no YN meeting for the month of August. Continue 10 enjoy your summer.

3. Anchorage Coin Club Board Meeting: August 20th (Wednesday) at 7:00 PM at the Central Lutheran Church.

July 6th Membership Meeting

Since the Membership meeting was also the club's summer picnic, the details of the meeting are essentially spelled out in the "From Your Editors" section of this newsletter. For all intents and purposes, the meeting started approximately 12 noon and finished up by 4 PM that afternoon.

Our club president, Roy Brown, won the door prize, a 1986-S Statue of Liberty Proof Half.

The membership prize, a 1973 Proof Set, was won by YN Kento Azegami.

1922 $20 Gold Certificate Reverse

1922 $20 Gold Certificate Reverse

Editors Final Notes

Club member, Robin Sisler (and former YN) successfully bid on several circulated rolls of donated coins at our YN Coin Auction in June. One roll, a Jefferson Nickel roll, turned out to have every mint mark and date from 1938 onward. The second roll, a roll of Washington silver quarters (which he got for under $20 in the auction), had dates going back to 1934. It turns out that particular roll of Washington silver quarters had two error / variety coins whose combined value was about $200.

You never know what you'll come across at our club's auctions...

1913 $50 Gold Certificate

1913 $50 Gold Certificate

 

YN CORNER
by Larry Nakata (Member #41)

There was an excellent turnout of YNs and their families for our Summer picnic on July 6th. The main event, the Treasure Hunt, started at exactly 2 PM. The YNs, their brothers, and sisters were divided into two teams. Each team was given a numismatic clue, which they had to solve in order to find the location of the next clue. All numismatic clues could be answered through the Redbook. which is given to every new YN that joins the Anchorage Coin Club.

In order to answer these clues, the YNs would have needed to know their stuff about US Commemorative coins. Two Cent pieces. Cents, Gold dollars, and other coins. While there were times they were stumped for the answers, the adults (mostly parents...who accompanied the YNs) were having just as much fun helping their kids with the clues. It was truly a family event. The event organizers even "salted" the trail with coins placed in 2x2 holders. These "salted" coins were intended to tell the YNs when they were getting close to the location of their next clue.

In the end, both teams found their portion of the treasure map. Alas,...it was only two pieces of the map. The third piece was in the possession of one of our members. The final clue that needed to be solved revolved around finding the one who best represented the 1982 Washington Commemorative Half Dollar. Needless to say, the YNs solved that almost instantaneously...and were running over to President Roy Brown for the final piece of the map. I think he had as much fun as the kids on this event!

With all three portions of the map now in their possession, it was something to see all of the kids running (and I mean running) over to the location where the treasure chest was hidden. All of us adults watching from the outer pavilion (where the picnic was held) were really enjoying watching all of the YNs and their families searching for clues and ultimately finding that treasure chest.

The coins were evenly divided among all of the YNs, their brothers, and sisters. Each of them had a handful of the coins and paper currency for their collections.

Thanks go out to all of our coin dealers for donating all of the coins and paper currency that filled that treasure chest.

Thanks also go out to members Bruce Gamble, John Larsen, Loren Lucason, and Robin Sisler for their volunteer efforts in organizing this highly-successful event for our club's picnic.........

 

 

UNITED STATES GOLD PAPER CURRENCY
by Larry Nakata (Member #41)

Last year I wrote an article in our club's newsletter on the evolution of U.S. paper currency. In the course of that article, I brought up the point that Silver Certificates and Gold Notes evolved as politically motivated Federal Currency. During the 19th century, gold and silver mining interests exerted their influence on U.S. coinage and paper currency by trying to impose either a gold or silver standard. Paper currency was redeemable in the equivalent gold or silver coinage of it's day.

This particular article will deal on what happened with United States gold paper currency.

The discovery of gold in the United Stales probably precipitated the move towards a gold standard. With the discovery of gold in California, gold coinage became a very significant medium of exchange In California, as the population grew in size, banks in that state were soon handling enormous quantities of gold coin for daily transactions. Such handling of so much gold coin proved difficult and soon became a barrier to efficient operation of the banks.

In order to facilitate such transactions. Congress passed the Act of July 12. 1870. which authorized nine Gold banks in California and one in Boston to issue and circulate paper currency redeemable in gold coin. The denominations issued were in $5, $10, $20, $50, $100, and $500. These were the first "National Gold Bank Notes". The vignettes on the obverse were the same as on the National Bank Notes of the First Charter Period (1863-1882). These notes were issued from 1870-75.

These banks were Gold Banks in addition to being National Banks. Their operation came under the general provisions of the National Banking Act of 1863 and were required to deposit the legal amount of U.S. Bonds with the Treasurer of the United States in exchange for the privilege of circulating such Bank Notes with their bank names on the notes.

It must be remembered that the obligation of redeeming these notes in gold coin rested with the bank and not with the government. The Treasury Department had not yet resumed specie payments (which were not to come until 1879).

Gold Certificates were not made for general circulation until 1882, even though they first appeared in 1865. The first three issues appeared between 1865 and 1875 and were used as commercial transactions between banks and clearing houses. Denominations ranged from $10 to $10,000. These notes were often referred to as "gold backs" because of the orange or gold color found on their reverse. These are probably the most colorful, vivid, and attractive of all paper current, issues.

1882 $100 Gold Certificate

1882 $100 Gold Certificate

Of the nice issues of Gold Certificates, only four were circulated to any extent... namely the 4th, 7th, 8th, and 9th issues. This series lasted until the era of small - sized currency, ending in 1928.

With the coming of small-sized currency in 1928. the small sized Gold Certificates proved to be a short lived series that ended with the Emergency Bank Act of 1933. which required the surrender of all Gold Certificates, both large and small sized.

This particular series was issued in denominations of $10, $20, $50, $100, $500, and $1000. Unlike the large sized notes, the reverse of the small sized Gold Certificates were printed in green and are considered to be much scarcer than the older large sized notes.

Of unique interest are the Treasury or Coin Notes, in which two series were issued in 1890 and 1891. By Act of Congress, the Secretary of the Treasury was authored to issue these Coin Notes that could be redeemable in either in silver or gold, depending upon the discretion of the Secretary of the Treasury. This was essentially a compromise to the two factions influencing a silver or gold standard on U.S. coinage and paper currency. These notes were issued in denominations ranging from $1 to $1000, with the $50 notes being issued only in 1891.

The Gold Reserve Act of January 31, 1934 raised the value of gold from $20.67 to $35 per troy ounce, prohibited the circulation of gold coins, and allowed Gold Certificates to be issued only to Federal Reserve Banks. A new series of Gold Certificates, Series of 1934. was made and released lo the Federal Reserve Banks in exchange for gold coin or bullion. No specimen of these notes was ever released outside of the Federal Reserve System. The $100,000 note was the highest denomination of this Series.

On April 24, 1964, Treasury Secretary Dillon signed an order removing all restrictions from the holding or acquiring of Gold Certificates issued before the passage of the Gold Reserve Act of 1934. This action made possible the collection of gold paper currency in the numismatic market.

U.S. Gold Paper Currency is a tough series to collect in any form. Such currency will usually command fairly high prices, especially in the better grades.

Because National Gold Bank Notes were heavily circulated in the 1870-75 series, any of these notes in crisped condition is practically unheard of and is an extreme rarity. The general condition of these notes is usually found in advanced circulation with VF or better condition considered rare. Still...these notes in any condition are rare enough that they are in great demand by collectors.

In terms of large sized Gold Certificates, remember that only four of the nine issues were circulated to any extent.

Finally, remember that the small sized Gold Certificates are considered much scarcer than their older large sized counterparts.

Perhaps in the course of developing your collection, you may be lucky enough to own several of these U.S. Gold Paper Currency Notes.

References;

"Official 1997 Blackbook-Price Guide of US Paper Money" 29th Edition by Marc Hudgeons.

"A Guide Book of Modern U.S. Currency" by Neil Shafer 3rd Edition c. 1969.

"U.S. Large Size Paper Currency 1861-1923" by William P Donlan c. 1979 Sixth Edition

"Paper Money of the U.S." 14th

Edition by Robert Friedberg c. 1995

 

 

SURFING THE INTERNET

We were looking for good companion articles for this month's piece on US gold paper currency. While browsing the ANA's WEB page http://www.monev.org we came across this "Money Talks" transcript from March. 1994:

 

THE GOLD SURRENDER ORDER
by Bill Jones

In March of 1933. President Franklin Roosevelt came up with a new type of "Golden Rule." One of his first executive orders restricted the right of U.S. citizens to own gold,

Roosevelt's edict was known as the Gold Surrender Order. It required all U.S. citizens to sell their gold coins, bullion, and certificates to the government. Gold usage was limited to industrial, professional, artistic, and coin collectors' applications. There was to be no free market for gold in the United States, and government maintained strict controls over the distribution of raw gold for legitimate uses.

1900 $10,000 Gold Certificate

1900 $10,000 Gold Certificate

The United States and the rest of the world were thrown into a severe economic depression in the late 1920's, Many businesses failed, and most of those that survived were forced to cut their operations. The unemployment rate rose to 25%...and in 1932, Franklin Roosevelt won the presidential election with a mandate to straighten out the economy.

President Roosevelt's Gold Surrender Order was a small part of the comprehensive program the president and his advisors developed to end the Great Depression. During the first 100 days of his administration, Roosevelt took many unprecedented actions. One was a plan to devalue the dollar, by raising the price of gold by nearly 60%. Roosevelt and his advisors hoped this action would inflate the price of farm commodities, and stimulate economic growth. The President issued the Gold Surrender Order to prevent those who owned gold from making any windfall profit.

Many U.S. gold coins that would have been collectors' items were melted down because of the Gold Surrender Order. Although exemptions were made for collectors' coins, many people did not understand the law, or felt it was their patriotic duty to comply with it.

The ban on ownership of gold was enforced until 1974. By then the world gold price was higher than the official U.S. rate of $35 an ounce, and the policy had stopped serving a useful purpose.

 

 

COINS OF THE GOLD RUSH
by Charles Surasky

Editors' Note: While doing further browsing of the ANA WEB Page, we also came across these interesting articles from "Money Talks." We thought it would make for interesting reading:

In late 1848, newspapers around the world were filled with stories of the discovery of gold in California. A wave of humanity dropped everything and took off for the California gold fields, hoping to get rich quick. One of the America's most interesting coins was specially created just to mark that historic event.

An Army Lieutenant was entrusted with the government's first purchase of California gold. He was ordered to deliver it safely to the Philadelphia Mint- a task that involved considerable distance, and great personal risk.

The Secretary of War in Washington requested the California gold to the Philadelphia Mint, and the specially marked coins were quickly made. The coins produced from the government's first California gold were exactly the same as all 1848 $2 & 1/2 dollar gold coins - with one major exception. The letters C.A.L., the abbreviation for California, were stamped right above the head of the eagle, on the back of each coin. This was to show where the gold came from.

About 1400 coins were minted in this original group- but only about 200 have survived for modern historians, museums and collectors. The 1848 "CAL" coins are quite valuable...fetching up to $30,000 or more each. But more importantly, they're historic reminders of the California Gold Rush, and our nation's Western heritage.

 

 

THE GOLD DOLLAR IS AUTHORIZED
by
Bill Jones

Few of us have ever seen a $1 gold coin. Many don't even know we ever had one. Though the first dollar coin is beautiful... it's the story of how the gold coin came to that's a real beauty. If you mink Washington's pork barrel politics is a fairly recent development, listen to this story.

The nation's first gold discoveries were in the Appalachians- in the Carolinas and northern Georgia. Small amounts of gold had been discovered as early as 1799, but the big strikes.... the kind that set prospectors hearts a flutter... first occurred in the late 1820's.

Just as these eastern gold fields were being depleted, the big California gold discovery of 1848 occurred. Suddenly, there was a glut of gold. The western mining interests wanted to expand the gold market...and who could possibly be a better customer than the government in Washington?

Western congressmen made a deal with their southern counterparts, who were concerned that the declining gold production in the South would force the closing of two small Federal mints in Charlotte. North Carolina and Dahlonega. Georgia.

In 1849, Congress provided an answer to the needs of both areas by authorizing the $1 and $20 gold pieces. The $20 piece contained almost an ounce of gold, and would require massive government gold purchases. That satisfied the West. The tiny $1 gold piece allowed the Southern mints to stay open.

The $1 gold coin was popular before the Civil War because it was reliable and convenient Silver dollars were not popular. People found them too heavy and cumbersome. The Federal government didn't issue $1 bills until the Civil War- and the paper notes provided by private banks often proved to be worthless.

After the Civil War. gold coins were used mostly in large transactions that seldom required a $1 coin. And in 1889, after years of limited mintage and use, Congress ended production of the gold dollar.

 

 


The Anchorage Coin Club
 

Meetings:       Membership meeting - First Wednesday of the month, 7:30 PM
                        E-Board meeting - Third Wednesday of the month, 7:00 PM
                        Meetings held at the Central Lutheran Church, at the corner of 15th and Cordova

 

Club Officers

President-                    Roy Brown          Days: 563-6708
                                                                    Eves: 243-5732
V. President-                Mike Orr            Eves: 522-3679
Treasurer-                      Robert Hall        Eves: 561-8343
Secretary-                   Larry Nakata        Days: 269-5603
                                                                    Eves: 563-1729

Editors -                     Loren Lucason    Eves: 272-3700
                                    Larry Nakata
                                    Robin Sisler
                                    Mike Nourse
                                    Jim Susky
Club Archivist / Photographer - Robin Sisler

Board of Directors

Ann Brown-                      Days: 563-6708

Bruce Gamble-               Eves: 345-6273

John Larson-                    Eves: 276-3292

DUES

To save costs, members not responding to renewal notices within 3 months will be considered inactive.

The Anchorage Coin Club is a non-profit organization formed to provide information, education, and a meeting place for individuals having an interest in numismatics.

Correspondence Address: Anchorage Coin Club, P.O. Box 230169, Anchorage, Alaska 99523