Return to Alaska Coin Exchange homepage

Return to ACCent homepage

ACCent: The Monthly Newsletter of the Anchorage Coin Club

ACCent Header

Volume 10, Number 10

August 1997

October Membership Meeting
Wed., October 1, 1997 Central Lutheran Church

7:30 PM Meeting



Well.... Autumn is now here. Hope your Summer went well. At the club level, we had a pretty good turnout of members for our September 3rd club meeting. Typically, attendance tends to fall off during the summer time as our members enjoy the great weather that summer brings here in Alaska. Now that September is here, it's good to see all of you members at the meeting..... adults as well as YNs.

The membership meeting talked about upcoming projects for the duration of this year. Among the key projects the club is trying to move forward is a club sponsored coin show to be held in the next couple of months, our upcoming Christmas Potluck Party set for Thursday evening / December 4th. and plans for year as our club celebrates it's 10th year... a milestone. It's hard to believe that our club will be 10 years old come March of next year. See the minutes of the September 3rd club meeting for details.

On the subject of the upcoming club sponsored coin show: kudos should go out to member Robin Sisler for trying to tackle the tough job of organizing a com show. It's not an easy thing to do. Your Board has been getting feedback from the membership that they want to see more coin shows around Anchorage. One way you can help to get the club back on track with coin shows is to volunteer your time. Robin needs help and you can contact him at his home (Ph# 243-2116) to offer your assistance.

Your chief editor has written an article this month on what it takes to do a coin show. Please read that article. It might open your eyes.....

Roman Gold Aureus Hero AD 54-68

For your information, the Raffle Prize that was shown at the September 3'" meeting is a 1925 St. Gaudens $20 Gold piece in MS-63 condition. It is an NGC certified coin. Raffle tickets will be available at all of the upcoming club meetings and the coin show at $5 a ticket. The lucky winner of this raffle coin will be chosen at our December 4th Christmas Potluck Party. Take a look in the coin price books and see how much this coin is worth. It is a very nice lustrous piece that would enhance anyone's collection.

The bullet auction at the September 3rd meeting saw the following 10 lots making the cut:

1937-D Buffalo Nickel MS-60

Washington Quarter XF-45 with rainbow toning

1925-S Buffalo Nickel Good

1925-S Buffalo Nickel Good

1911 Barber Dime Fine

1876 Liberty Seated Quarter AC

1876 Liberty Seated Half AC

1912-D Barber Half Good

1950 Roosevelt Dime Proof

World Coins Book 1801 -1995

There were a lot more coin lots that did not make the cut. Some of those lots ended up being bought up individually by other members who made offers to the owners. Keep in mind that if you have that extra coin that you would like to sell, the bullet auction is not a bad way to get those coins displayed. While it might not make the cut as one of the ten chosen lots, one of our other members may be interested in your coin. Bring them to the next meeting.

Our next club membership meeting will be held on October 1st. A presentation will be given by member Robert Hall on "Coin Auctions". Robin Sisler should have further information on the coin show. We'll have our bullet coin auction.

And be sure to bring some coins to show, exchange, or sell.

The YN meeting on September 12th saw 6 YNs show up for the event. The even! was on the subject of collecting ancient coins. Thanks go to member Loren Lucason for giving a great presentation on the subject. Loren even covered the subject of how one grades ancient coins, For those YNs who missed the September 12th session, you missed a good one. Each YN who attended that session went home with two ancient Roman coins that were 1700 years old. Check out the details in this month's edition of the "YN Corner". The next YN meeting will be held on Friday, October 10'". The session will be on collecting Buffalo Nickels. For you YNs, be sure to attend this meeting.......

Finally... one announcement: Member Robert Hall has organized a Coin and Card Show at the Cottonwood Creek Mall in Wasilla. The scheduled date of this show is October 25th and 26th. If you happen to be in the Wasilla area that weekend, drop on by. There will be a club information table setup at that show.

Oops!! One more announcement:

Orders for our club's 10th year medallion set can now be placed by our club members. The Anchorage Coin Club's 10th year medallion set will be a two coin (silver and bronze) numbered set in an attractive jewelry type case. Each coin will be a proof-like coin with the member's number stamped on the edge of the coins. Cost of the coin set will be $30. The sets should be available by the March or April membership meetings. Interested members can place their orders with club member Larry Nakata. Larry asks that members pay their $30 at the time of order (or shortly thereafter) to cover some of the up front costs for minting of these medallion sets.

Special orders can be taken for those members interested in having a 10th year Gold medallion numbered coin made. The price of a Gold medallion coin will be based upon the spot price of gold at the time of mintage.



Schedule of Events for the Month of October

1. Monthly Membership Meeting: October 1st (Wednesday) at 7:30 PM at the Central Lutheran Church. Club members and general public welcomed. Presentation: "Coin Auctions" by member Robert Hall.

2. YN (Young Numismatists) Meeting: October 10th (Friday) at 7:00 PM at the Central Lutheran Church. YNs. club members, and general public welcomed. Subject to be covered will be "Collecting Buffalo Nickels".

3. Anchorage Coin Club Board Meeting: October 15th (Wednesday) at 7:00 PM at the Central Lutheran Church. Club members welcomed.

September 3rd Membership Meeting

The September 3rd membership meeting started promptly at 7:30 PM.

The first order of business was the door prize and membership prize. The door prize, a set of 1982 Silver UNC and Proof Washington Commemorative Half Dollar coins were won by YN Corey Rennell. The membership prize, a 1996 Alaska Mint Silver "Goldpanner" medallion was won by member Scott Bryner.

Member Robin Sisler gave a briefing on the club sponsored coin show which he is trying to organize for either the month of October or November. Thus far, Robin has contacted the Sears and University shopping centers. Robin is also looking at other desirable malls. He is still in the process of determining what dates will be available in the upcoming months with these malls and the issue of costs. He has targeted one club sponsored show between now and the end of the year.

Discussions ensued on a program in which the club would encourage it's members to circulate no longer seen common date type coins (such as wheat cents, silver dimes, silver quarters, etc.) during the course of the week in which the coin show will be held. The club will also buy some semi-key and key date modem type coinage (such as the 1972 doubled die penny, etc.) that would circulate that week. Ideas were discussed on how we can capitalize on the program with the press and through advertising. Club members were asked if anyone knew of a reporter that was willing to do a spot article on this program.

Robin hopes to firm things up by the Board meeting on September 17th. Announcements on any chosen dates will be posted in the club's newsletter. As of this meeting, indications show that an October scheduled coin show will be "iffy".

Discussions then went on to the subject of the club's Christmas Potluck Party on December 4th. As part of the event an announcement will be made on the winner of the club's medallion design for our 10th year commemorative coin set. Members were asked to submit designs for at least the obverse side of the coin prior to December 4th. The winner of the design will be recognized accordingly and given their 10th year numbered set free. Lots of awards are expected to be given out at the Christmas Party.

Open discussion then continued on events for next year when our coin club makes it's 10th year anniversary. Among the plans discussed is a group trip next year in August for the ANA Convention. The Board is looking at sending a deserving YN to that event next year. Depending upon our club's budget, we may extend the program to a deserving adult member as well.

Other ideas talked about for next year was holding a really BIG Auction at a nice hotel. This idea met with favor from the membership in attendance. Efforts will subsequently move forward in the coming months on looking into the logistics of such a major auction.

Following a 10 minute break, the bullet auction was held.

The meeting finished up with a video presentation on "The Money Story" put out by the Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP). Members in attendance were allowed to take home a VHS tape of the video. All remaining tapes will be distributed to our club member coin dealers for distribution as promotional items from our coin club.

Roman Denarius Augustus 27 BC - 14 AD

Minutes of the September 17th Board Meeting

The Board meeting started at 7:00 PM.

Larry Nakata gave a briefing on costs for the club's 10th year medallion set. in talks with club member. Mikt Robuck- owner of the Alaska Mint, preparation of a die for the medallion will cost somewhere between $500 to $800 depending upon the complexity of design. Mike Robuck can make numbered sets in which each coin will have the member's number imprinted on the edge of the coin. A numbered two coin, proof-like set in a nice jewelry type box can be provided with one coin being a I ounce silver and the other coin being a bronze. Based upon 100 numbered sets, Larry Nakata estimated the cost of each set at about $30 per set. The Board subsequently approved go-ahead for taking orders from members for their numbered sets.

Member Robin Sisler gave an updated briefing on the progress of his efforts to organize a coin show to be held in the next few months. The University Center will not be available until the month of March. Tentative discussions indicate the University Center will charge $50 per table for a weekend show. Tables and advertising is provided as part of the deal. This is a definite consideration for March.

The Sears Mall is available in November. The Sears Mall wants $680/day for a show. No tables or advertising is provided. Robin has estimated costs of somewhere between $75 - $100 per table for a weekend show.

Hotels were discussed as an alternative. However, it was pointed out that advertising would be important in order to bring in "traffic" for the show. Such advertising costs would be very high. Conclusion reached was (hat this should be considered as a last alternative.

Robin will be looking at other malls as alternatives. Projections call for the coin show to be held in the month of November.

The Board then discussed events for the December 4th Christmas Potluck Party. It was pointed out that last year's Christmas party went very well, Seems everyone who attended had a great time. The intent was to have a nice dinner followed by an event. The event last year was the "YN Bucks" contest in which YN's vied for YN dollars for use at our club's January Coin Auction. The Board decided to have a similar type event for our club's December 4th Christmas party. Larry Nakata agreed to setup another YN Bucks Program.

It was also decided that our club's coin auction occur at our January membership meeting.

With no further business, the meeting adjourned at 9 PM.


by Larry Nakata (Member #41)

Well...all of you YNs should now be back at school. We're now back into our YN meetings as of September 12th. The turnout for that particular meeting was a bit sparse with only 6 YNs showing up for the session. It was a very good session for those YNs who attended. Member Loren Lucason gave a very good presentation on ancient coins. He concentrated on the differences between

Greek and Roman ancient coins. There are other types of ancient coins. ..but the main ones collected are either Greek or Roman. Loren also pointed out that collecting ancient coins is affordable even for the YN. Did you know that some our coin dealers here in town have " boxes" of ancient coins that they sell for $5 a coin?! You can "cherrypick" through these boxes and buy a coin that could be 1700 years old and in pretty good identifiable condition. Loren also went over books that a YN can use for identifying ancient coins. While some of the books are fairly expensive, in the $50 range, there are some books that are available in the $15 range. You can buy such books from your local coin shop. Otherwise, the Loussac Library does have some of the more expensive books on ancient coins for your use.

Roman Denarius Trajan AD 98 - 117

Loren then went over how one grades ancient coins. Unlike US coinage, ancient coins tend to be graded in one of three grades: Poor condition and barely identifiable (AG to G) / Fair condition and Identifiable (VG-F) / A Great Looking Coin (VF and above). As an exercise, Loren had some 20 ancient coins for the YNs to grade. Based upon how well each YN did in the grading exercise, two ancient coins were given to each of the YNs in attendance. The one who did the best score (YN Nicky Bilak) got to choose his two coins first. The 2nd best score (by YN Kento Azegami) chose next....with all the remaining YNs choosing their coins in turn. The coins that were given out were from the Roman 3rd Century AD. Not bad....two ancient coins that were 1700 years old. Loren even went to the effort of identifying the year the coins were minted.

Thanks go to Loren for volunteering his time in giving this great presentation to the YNs.

Our next YN meeting will be scheduled for October 10th. This time, the session will be on the subject of collecting Buffalo Nickels. The October 10th meeting will also be a discussion on a YN Bucks program like the one we did last year. I need some ideas from you YNs on what you feel would be good ways to earn YN Bucks. These YN Bucks will be used for buying coins at our club's January Coin Auction.

I'll see you all at the October 1st Membership meeting and at the October 10th YN meeting.........



by Larry Nakata (Member #41)

Inquiries to our local coin dealers and input from our club's membership shows a strong desire to have our club get back on track and put on more club sponsored coin shows. In light of these desires. I thought it would be a good opportunity to talk about what it takes to do a coin show.

Doing a coin show is probably the toughest volunteer assignment to tackle. The first problem is finding volunteers within our club's membership willing to set up coin shows. It is a thankless job with lots of headaches. Volunteers must have a strong commitment to make it happen.

The volunteers must first find a good location for the coin show. In years past, the shows have been held in shopping malls with lots of "foot traffic" by the general public. Such shopping malls provide an environment for good sales of coins and an opportunity for our coin club to sign up new members.

Finding such good locations have proven very difficult these past several years with the advent of kiosks, small vendor pavilions set up in the center aisles of shopping malls. With mails now charging for such kiosk space to individual vendors, the desirable shopping malls now want to charge organizations (like our club) for use of their malls on weekends. We're finding out that on the average such costs will run about $50 to $65 per table for the weekend. This cost is just for the privilege of being allowed to set up at a very desirable shopping mall.

Once the volunteers come to terms with the shopping mall management, the next task is to gel commitments from our membership on tables for the show. Up to now many of the tables have been purchased by our local coin dealers or by various members of our club who wish to sell cards at these shows. Since we are a coin club, our volunteers have tried to maintain a fair ratio of coin to card tables...with a 50:50 ratio as the minimal acceptable guideline. To make a coin show work, you need commitments for a minimum of 20 paying tables. Costs of tables used to run anywhere from $25 to $35 per table in the good old days. With a changing environment in which the desirable shopping malls now charge money, you begin to see the problem.

Once commitments are made for the tables (and believe me it's the toughest part of the job getting those commitments) the volunteers next task is to arrange for tables & chairs to be delivered to the shopping mall. Sometimes the mall may provide some of the tables and chairs. Usually our club must rent those items from a company called Part) World here in Anchorage. If you're renting a whole lot of tables & chairs. Party World is willing to drop the rental rates accordingly. Based upon 20 tables and chairs, figure on about $10 / day for the rental fee for an 8 foot table with chair.

Then there is the important issue of advertising the coin show. The bigger malls generally have weekly advertising on the radio and newspaper. They usually are willing to advertise the coin show under their advertising budget. If the mail does not advertise the event, our club volunteers must arrange for advertising through local newspapers, local trade journals (such as Coin World-Numismatic News, and / or The Numismatist), and radio (if it is affordable). Such advertising is not cheap. If not properly advertised, you've got a lousy show on your hands. Typically, the cost of such advertisements will run about $10 / table. And of course...there is our club's newsletter, WEB Page, and "word of mouth" through our membership & coin dealers.

Naturally, the shopping mall and Party World wants their money up front. The club will usually pay for these up front costs & get reimbursed at the end of the coin show.

Roman Denarius Hadrian AD117-138

Other costs you don't see is Liability Insurance. More & more shopping malls (especially the desirable ones) require the organizer carry liability insurance. No show!! It became necessary for our coin club to carry such insurance because of these considerations. Such insurance does not come cheap. It's running us anywhere from $800- $1000 per year depending upon the insurance carrier chosen. The club recovers these costs through the coin show table fees. Assuming the club does four coin shows a year, about $200 / show must come back to the club for the insurance. Otherwise, the difference comes from our membership fees at the end of the year.

On the days of the coin show event our club volunteers must set up the tables, collect any unpaid table fees, maintain order throughout the coin show event, "breakdown" and neatly stack the tables and chairs for pickup by Party World. Party World usually picks up the tables and chairs the Monday following the coin show event.

If there are any members who committed to tables and failed to show up for the event....guess what?! Our club ends up eating those costs, The shopping mall and Party World don't give us a break because of a "no-show". That's why we try and collect our table fees up front prior to the coin show.

Add up the costs and tell me if I am wrong. If a mall is going to charge us $50-$65 per table for a weekend show, table fees will run anywhere from $75-$100 per table.

The rules are changing and we are going to have to accept having to pay these kinds of costs if we want a decent coin show.

What are the alternatives?!

I suppose we can set up at a less desirable location. If the "foot traffic" is not good, what is the incentive for coin dealers or anyone else to want tables for such shows?! Our coin dealers can just as well make more money staying that weekend at their coin shop. The only way to offset the "foot traffic" issue would be to advertise heavily in the newspapers, trade journals, radio, and maybe even TV. Do you know what such advertising will cost?! Make a few phone calls and it may shock you to find out a cost upwards of a thousand dollars or more for doing an acceptable job. Divide that cost into the number of tables at the coin show and you'll find the costs are still going to be significant.

Take a look at the table fees charged at coin shows in the lower 48, I think you'll find $75-$ 100 per table for a weekend show is about the norm. The logistics are no different down there than they are up here. If there are any differences, it's that we had a good thing going for a while with free access to desirable malls. But those days are rapidly coming to an end.

What can you do as a club member?! One way is to become one of the volunteers that helps organize these shows. It's a tough job. but the more volunteers who help...the workload can be better spread around. Right now club member Robin Sisler is trying to organize our next club coin show event. As it stands, the University Mall will not be able to make their mall available until March of next year. The University Mall is a good possibility for next year. The Sears Mall is available, but they want money for the privilege of setting up at their location in the month of November. Robin is presently looking at other desirable malls. You can help Robin by offering your help. He can be contacted at his home number (Ph# 243-2116).

What else can you do to help?! Robin will be calling the members in our club on signing up for table commitments. Buy a table!! Ultimately, it's going to be you... our club member...who dictates the success or failure o a coin show. Two of you members can get together and buy a table. Surely you must have some extra coins that could be sold at a coin show. Other members can support the coin show-by buying tables that can be used for coin displays or donate a table for use as a coin display This is a definite way to support your coin show.

Of course...the most important way to support your coin shows is to show up at the event. Look around and buy a few coins. It's a great opportunity for all our club members to mingle, check out all of the great coins that are available at the show, and buy something to add to their collection.

From my perspective, coin shows are a great way to educate the general public about coin collecting Coin shows have also been responsible for the growth of our club since such shows tend to add new membership to our ranks.

I believe the days of the local coin dealers and card people totally supporting the cost of these shows will come to an end in due time. It is necessary for us, as members of this club, to broaden the support by getting tables as well. No matter what location is chosen for the coin show, your support is necessary.

It starts with the next upcoming show that Robin is trying to organize. When he calls each of you in the coming weeks.... please remember the importance and need for that support.




While browsing through the Internet, we came across this rather interesting article on early paper money in this month's "Money Talks" series by the ANA.

From the ANA's WEB page:


Gerald Tebben

How old is paper money? Well, it's not quite as old as gold, silver, and copper coins - which have been used as money for more than 2,700 years. But as your grandma might have put it... it's no spring chicken, either.

Paper money is believed to have been invented in China during the 7th century. That famous traveler. Marco Polo, told a disbelieving Europe about paper money during the late 13th century. He wrote that the great Kublai Khan of China "may truly be said to possess the secret of the alchemists, as he has the art of producing money." Kublai Khan did that by impressing his vermilion seal on large sheets of coarse mulberry paper.

Most old Chinese paper money still in existence today dates from the beginning of the Ming Dynasty, a century after Marco Polo's incredible journey. Besides dragons and intricate designs- the bills pictured the number of coins they are worth 600 years ago...and told everyone who handled them that counterfeiting was punishable by death.

These bills owe their existence to an accident of history. Sometime during the late 1300s, a cache of about a thousand bills, along with a quantity of gold and silver, were hidden inside the base of a statue in a temple in Beijing. The treasure remained undetected for more than 500 years. Then, during the Boxer Rebellion in 1900, British soldiers discovered the cache while looting the temple. They took the gold and silver, and left the notes behind as worthless trash. But an American surgeon one of 2,500 Americans sent to help put down the rebellion saved the bills from destruction.

While these bills are scarce, a few people collect them. Today, Ming Dynasty bills in good condition sell for about $100.





Editors Note: Since we are on the subject of paper currency, your editors came across this newsgroup bulletin board item by Bruce Geise on "Paper Money Collecting Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for rec. collecting, pa per-money." He gives some very good answers to questions asked about collecting paper money. From

What's the best way to get started collecting? Probably the best way to start is to subscribe to Bank Note Reporter. It's a sort of monthly newspaper for paper money collectors and not only does it carry all the latest news about new issues, currency changes, etc.. it also has advertising from a very large number of dealers and it lists paper money shows in the US and around the world, BNR offers free samples to anyone (not just in the USA). Subscriptions run about $30 for 1 year (around $40 outside the US). It's a very good source of information. The address is: Bank Note Reporter / 700 State St./ Iola, Wisconsin 54990 / Phone number (715)445-2214.

The Professional Currency Dealers Association (PCDA) offers a small booklet called "How to Collect Paper Money" which, if I recall correctly, even contains a few sample world banknotes. The book is very cheap. Their address is PCDA / P.O. Box 573/ Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53201 (Attn: Kevin Foley).

How should I store my banknotes? To keep them in the best possible condition you should use Mylar holders. Common plastic products such as plastic wrap, plastic bags, window envelopes, etc. should not be used for storing paper money. Most plastics contain PVC, which deteriorates with time and heat, releasing acids and gases which will migrate into the paper, resulting in the notes appearing to have been soaked in oil, or so brittle they shatter at a touch. Use only those products (such as Mylar and other inert plastics) which have been tested and approved for long term paper money storage.

Notes should be stored or displayed away from direct sunlight, to avoid fading. Repairs should be made only with products that are stable. "Magic" tape and other plastic tapes will leave permanent stains on notes.

There are individual Mylar holders which look like plastic envelopes and cost about 30 cents each, usually in packs of 50 or 100. You can also keep notes in regular paper envelopes as well, although they're more liable to get damaged in handling.

Of you really want to get fancy, there are special albums with associated Mylar holders. Each page holds 1, 2, 3, or 4 notes (there are 4 different types of pages). This stuff is made by a company called Linder and it costs more than the individual holders. I believe the album and 20 pages cost around $60 US. Additional pages are something like $20 for 10. You can fit maybe 50 pages in one album. Unfortunately, Linder made the pages so they would only fit in their album. Theoretically you should use both the individual Mylar holders and the Linder pages, but for anything worth less than $20, I just use the pages. They're a lot like Mylar.

Most big-time dealers carry Mylar holders and Linder albums.

What is a "Pick" number? Refers to Albert Pick, author of the world paper money book on general issues. Nearly everyone who deals in world paper uses this system for identifying notes. Every note within a country has a number associated with it, often shown in the form "P-34" for general issues and "P-S34" for specialized issues (volume 1). Since every country has the same numbers, a note is identified by country and Pick number. For example, USA P-480 is your garden variety series 1988 $1 bill.

What is a watermark? Most countries have banknotes with watermarks. The USA added a watermark to its new $100 note in 1996 (and some people in the USA were curious if it was some kind of subliminal message).

A watermark is simply a design that's within the paper of the note itself which can only be seen when viewing the note with a strong light behind it (i.e. you can only see it when light is passing through the note). Watermarks are an effective, although very old, anti-counterfeiting device.

Are old US notes still legal tender? Every note that has ever been backed by the US Government is still honored by the US Government. Although depositing an 1863 gold certificate for face value would be utterly foolish, it's still legally possible.


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


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