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ACCent: The Monthly Newsletter of the Anchorage Coin Club

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Volume 12, Number 9

September 1999

September Membership Meeting
Wed., September 1, 1999 Central Lutheran Church

7:30 PM Meeting


 

FROM YOUR EDITORS

Change is inevitable: Stan Mead's coin collection changed (at least some) at our August 4th meeting when he won both a 1989 proof set for the door prize and a 1943 Walking Liberty Half Dollar in AU for the membership prize.

We had the proposed changes to the newsletter slogan posted, everyone was given a chance to review them, then we voted. The run-off vote came down to a matter of changing the slogan or not. By a narrow margin it was decided to change the slogan to: "Statio Pro Nummum, Anchorage For Coins, A place to anchor our pursuit of collectable coins." Later when we were prepared to change the newsletter we received notice of an award and everything changed again.

The Anchorage Coin Club has received First Place in ANA's Club Publications contest for our newsletter: ACCent. So, perhaps, the slogan should read: "The 'First Place' Award Winning Newsletter Of The Anchorage Coin Club." We are pleased as Punch about this award and welcome the change. The senior editor, Larry Nakata, is due the lion's share of thanks for this award. Then there is our well-versed members who provided us with the insightful articles and Mike Paoletti who made putting us on the Web possible.

We would like to wish our friendly rivals. Elgin Coin Club of Illinois- the second place award winners, all the best... that's the breaks of changes.

Never has circulating numismatics changed so fast, what with the quarter designs changing five times a year and the dollar coin changing color next year. The Federal Reserve notes, as well, are changing with new artwork and the addition of more anti-counterfeiting tricks. At least we are not traveling around the world changing money in every country.

John Larson continued his tour of money around the world, Wednesday the 4th, starting in the Mediterranean, continuing through Africa, and across Asia, The changes in money as you traveled across the world was overwhelming. We would do best just to keep track of our own dollars and cents, but even that is changing with refinements in grading and new discoveries in counterfeit detection.

1796 U.S. Dime - Obverse

1796 U.S. Dime - Obverse

To keep up with the latest, one must attend the upcoming coin seminar September 10th - 12th. Contact Larry Nakata to make arrangements to join us at the West Coast International Inn and change the way you look at coins. You will see a change in how you look at every coin at the Coin Show at the Northway Mall September 25th & 26th. Is it graded properly... is it a soft strike... or is it a fake? However, some things will never change; there will always be coins and there will always be a small, white metal coin circulating: the Greeks called it the drachm, medieval Europeans called it the denier, and we call it the dime.

Schedule of Events for the Month of September:

1. Monthly Membership Meeting: September 1st (Wednesday) at 7:30 PM at the Central Lutheran Church. Club members and general public welcome. A bullet auction of no more than 10 coin lots will occur. Members wishing to submit coins for the bullet auction can bring them to the meeting. There will be a joint presentation that evening by club president Loren Lucason and member Larry Nakata on the subject of "Collecting U.S. Quarters".

2. YN (Young Numismatists) Meeting: No YN meeting is planned for the month of September. YNs are encouraged to come to the September 1st membership meeting.

3. Anchorage Coin Club Coin Seminar: September 10th - 12th. Instructor: Bill Fivaz. Place; Westcoast International Inn. Subjects: "Coin Grading" and "Counterfeit Detection". See article in this month's newsletter for details.

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

August 18th Board Meeting:

The meeting was called to order at 7:15 pm. The main order of business was to go over the logistics for the club's September seminar.

Larry Nakata. organizer of the seminar, will be meeting next week with the catering manager at the Westcoast Int'l. Inn about final arrangements. A report by Larry indicated 25 people have signed up for the seminar. With the YNs, it is expected that there will be about 35 people in attendance. Letters have been sent to all attendees. Larry will also be following up with Bill Fivaz with an e-mail confirming the details.

Bill and Marilyn Fivaz are expected to arrive in Anchorage on Wednesday afternoon, September 8th and will be departing on Monday morning, September 13th. They will staying at the Westcoast where the seminar is held. While in Anchorage, discussed were events that could be held while Bill and Marilyn are in town. This will be discussed further at our September 1st club meeting.

1796 U.S. Dime Reverse

1796 U.S. Dime Reverse

Larry will try to arrange to have the conference room available on Thursday afternoon, Sept. 9th, so we can set up the tables and lamps for the seminar. Volunteers will be needed to help set up the lamps and get the conference room prepared (HINT!! HINT!!).

Overall report from Larry Nakata indicates things are on track in what appears to be our biggest seminar held to date.

Correspondence was distributed and reviewed by the Board. The Board members were pleased with the knowledge that our club won this year's First Place Award (from the ANA) for the best local club publication newsletter. ACCent. The last two years saw our coin club newsletter winning second place. Third year was the "charm".

As there was no further business to discuss, the meeting was adjourned at 8:30 pm.

 

DETAILS OF SEPTEMBER 10TH - 12TH
ANCHORAGE COIN CLUB SEMINAR

The Anchorage Coin Club seminar, scheduled for September 10th thru September 12th, will be on the subject of "Grading" and "Counterfeit Detection". Bill Fivaz. esteemed numismatist and life member of our club, will be coming up from Georgia to be our instructor.

The seminar is expected to start about 8:30 am each morning at the Westcoast International Inn, located at 333 West International Airport Road (Ph# 243-2333). Figure that people attending the event will show up around 8 am with refreshments served each morning (coffee, juice, and rolls). Lunch will be provided each day. Afternoon refreshments (sodas) will also be served. The seminar should end around 5 PM each day.... except for Sunday when we may end around 3 PM.

There will be numismatic books, writing tablets, and pens provided for the seminar. We ask that you bring your magnifying lenses. Since all of our members have the "Official ANA Grading Standards for U.S. Coins" (otherwise known as the ANA Grading Guide), we ask that you bring this particular book to the seminar. If you need a copy for the seminar, please get with Larry Nakata (eves: 563-I729/ leave message) so that arrangements can be made to get you this book. If you have a coin or coins that you would like graded or inspected for authenticity, be sure to bring them to the seminar. Bring lots of coins!!

Cost of The seminar is $245 for adults with free attendance for our club's YNs (i.e., Young Numismatists). YNs wishing to attend the event will need to notify member Larry Nakata. This is necessary in order to determine how many people will attend for purposes of planning the seminar.

There is still room for people wishing to attend the event.

Thus far, it looks like we have a good turn out for this year's seminar. Thanks go to all of you for your support. It is this support from our membership that is important and ensures having these seminars in Anchorage in the years to follow...

1805 U.S. Dime - Large Eagle Reverse

1805 U.S. Dime - Large Eagle Reverse

 

YN CORNER
by Larry Nakata (Member #41)

Even though we did not have a YN meeting for the month of August, there was a pretty good turn out of YNs at our club's membership meeting on August 4th. In fact we had a great turnout of people (about 30) for that meeting.

Coin club member John Larson gave an excellent slide presentation on "Foreign Paper Money", which was enjoyed by all.

By the time all YNs receive this newsletter, the month of August will be coming to an end and school will shortly be starting.

I thought it best to go over our coin club events for the month of September,

There will be a coin club meeting for all of our members (including YNs) on September 1st at our usual meeting place (Central Lutheran Church/ starting 7:30 PM). Figure on a coin auction and a presentation on coins that evening,... with refreshments.

The September YN meeting would normally be held on the 2nd Friday of the month (which falls on Sept, 10th). Since there is a conflict in which the club's coin seminar and YN meeting fall on the same day, there will be no YN meeting scheduled for September. Instead I would encourage YNs to attend the club's seminar. Attendance at the seminar is FREE for YNs. If any of you wish to attend the Sept. 10th - 12th seminar, please get with me at the September 1st membership meeting, call me at home (Ph # 5463-1729), or write a letter to the club (to my attention) informing us what days you will attend.

Finally, there will be a coin show that will be held at the Northway Mall on Sept 25th (Sat.) and Sept. 26th (Sunday).

There are lots of things to do for the month of September and I hope to see a lot of YNs at our Sept, 1st meeting.

I trust your Summer has been a one......

                Larry Nakata.

 

COLLECTING U.S. DIMES
by Larry Nakata (Member #41)

The good ol' U.S. dime used in our every day transactions. It's been a mainstay coin of our country since the beginning of U.S. coins and is probably one of the most circulated denominations used throughout U.S. history.

Since the dime came into being in 1796, there have been five series mimed to date:

The Bust series of dimes minted from 1796-1837.

The Liberty Seated dimes minted from 1837-1891.

The Barber or Liberty Head dimes 1892-1916.

The Mercury dimes 1916-1945.

And the Roosevelt dimes 1946-Present.

Each series has produced it's share of varieties and modified designs over the dime's history. It comes down to a lot of coins for the collector...and probably a lot of money that would need to be spent putting together a collection of U.S. dimes. How can the collector put together an affordable series of U.S. dimes?! I was faced with such a dilemma.

I'm one of those collectors that loves those "nice shiny white looking coins" in uncirculated condition. My problem has been that I have "Cadillac tastes" with a "Volkswagen budget".

1829 U.S. Dime Obverse

1829 U.S. Dime Obverse

First, I found putting together a set of Roosevelt dimes in uncirculated and proof condition easy and affordable.

Then came the Mercury dimes...and the sudden realization that one's pocketbook determines what you collect. I was able to put together the "short series" of uncirculated Mercury dimes (1934-1945). Varieties like the 1942/1 and 1942 D 2/1 were out of my reach in uncirculated condition..... so I ended up satisfying my needs with lower grades for the coins. I did put together a complete set of circulated Mercury dimes and am slowly... ever so slowly... replacing those early date circulated dimes with "UNCs". In terms of proof Mercury dimes, I elected to purchase U.S. proof sets as the pocketbook could afford them.

The reality of what it would take to collect Mercury dimes led me to the decision to collect circulated sets of the remaining series of dimes (i.e., the Barbers, Liberty Seated, and Bust dimes).

Barbers were easy enough to put together as a set. Forget the 1894-S Barber dime since the U.S. Mint only made 24 of them. There are some tough dates, like the 1895-O, that can run you hundreds of dollars for the coin in circulated condition.... but when you keep staring at that empty hole in your coin book, you have to relent and spend the money to buy that coin. There is a "school of thought" that one should first buy the key date of any series and then fill out the rest of your coin book. I found, as a collector, it's more economically palatable to buy the cheaper coins first (in decent circulated grades) and then "zero in" on the key dates (as the pocketbook can afford).

1829 U.S. Dime Reverse

1829 U.S. Dime Reverse

On the issue of Barber proofs.... with Redbook prices showing these proofs at anywhere from $400 to $500 per coin, it probably will be a long time before I ever put together a complete series..... if ever.

As an alternative, I have been thinking lately about putting together a nice type set of Proof dimes consisting of one example from each series (with the exception of the Bust dime.... no proofs are shown in the Redbook).

Like the Barber dimes, I took the same approach with my Liberty Seated and Bust dime collections. Over the years I have been slowly filling in the "holes" of my coin books with the respect to these series of dimes. I found that collecting such coins, minted in the 19th century, is not very easy. These are difficult coins to find through your local coin dealer. I suppose some of these coins could be ordered through coin magazines, but I like looking at the coin first before making a decision to buy. Besides.... I have a strong view the coin collector should support their local coin dealers. Without your local coin dealer, coin collecting could not have survived as a hobby in your community.

1863 U.S. Dime Obverse

1863 U.S. Dime Obverse

I said earlier in this article I love the look of those "nice shiny white looking coins". One thing I did was put together a type set of great looking dimes....one from each series. I must admit it looks impressive when housed in a Capital Plastics "Dime Series" holder. If you look at the Redbook prices, the collector can put together a nice type set at an affordable price.

So this is how I approached my way of collecting U.S. dimes. I am one of those collectors that likes to have a lot of coins to show friends and other collectors. I also have examples of "nice shiny white looking coins" as well.

My method probably differs from other collectors in our coin club or elsewhere. There is that "school of thought" in coin collecting that it is better to collect on the basis of "quality" rather than "quantity", Either way is a choice made by the coin collector. Ultimately one's pocketbook determines what can be afforded, I do believe it is possible to get that mix of both "quality" and "quantity" for the prudent coin collector who knows what to look for, and has a "game plan".......

        Larry Nakata.

1863 U.S. Dime Reverse

1863 U.S. Dime Reverse

 

 

SURFING THE INTERNET

FROM YOUR EDITORS: In keeping with the theme of this month's newsletter, U.S. Dimes, we browsed the WEB to find articles of interest. There was quite a bit of information we found and settled on the following articles for your reading. ENJOY!!

From ANA's Web Page:

(http://www.money.org),

the Money Talk series:

 

THE 1894-S DIME
by Thomas LaMarre, Transcript No. 297

We've heard the expression "not worth one thin dime." But did you know there is one thin dime that's worth more than a quarter of a million dollars?

The San Francisco Mint didn't make any dimes in 1893, a depression year. But it did turn out 24 dimes in 1894. Why only 24? Many coin collectors believed the Mint did it because it needed $2.40 to balance its books at the end of the fiscal year! And there's another theory that the coins were made to test Mint equipment, in anticipation of a larger order of dimes.

The Mint's superintendent's daughter, Hallie Daggett, provided a different explanation. It seems that a group of San Francisco bankers asked her father to make some dimes as a personal favor. Perhaps they realized the San Francisco Mint hadn't made any 1894-dated dimes for circulation, and any examples that were minted would be "instant" rarities. The superintendent ordered 24 dimes struck - and gave three specimens to each of the seven bankers.

What about the remaining three coins? Daggett gave them to his daughter -telling her to keep them until she was old, when she'd be able to sell them for a good price. But Hallie was just a young girl, and for her the future was now. So she disregarded her father's advice, stopped off at an ice cream parlor on her way home - and spent one of the dimes.

Several other examples found their way into circulation. A Kansas City coin collector found one in pocket change at the turn of the century. Another specimen surfaced in California, And in the 1970s. a well-worn example was purchased "over the counter" by the coin department of a New York City store.

Still, only 12 of the original 24 dimes have been accounted for - including one that changed hands in 1990 for nearly $300,000.....

        Thomas LaMarre.

 

 

A FASCIST DIME
by Thomas LaMarre, Transcript No. 1591

The design on the "tails" side of the United States dime spread a message of unity during World War I, but during the Second World War, after a hated political group adopted its symbolism, it became a source of division.

1938 Mercury Dime Obverse

1938 Mercury Dime Obverse

It was in 1919 that Benito Mussolini founded the first political group to be called "fascist." High on the group agenda was a plan to rebuild the glories of ancient Rome.

Just a few years earlier, sculptor Adolph Weinman looked to ancient Rome for inspiration as he designed a new United States dime. It was the "Mercury" or "Winged Liberty Head" dime, and the "tails" side pictured a bundle of rods and a battle ax... an emblem known as "fasces." Critics called the new coin the "golf dime because they thought the bundle looked like a bag of golf clubs. But the Director of the Mint said the fasces symbolized the strength that lies in unity.

In the days of the Roman Republic, fasces were made from birch or elm rods tied together by a red strap, with an ax blade projecting from the center. Servants carried the bundles ahead of magistrates, governors and emperors to symbolize the power of government officials to punish people or put them to death. Mussolini liked the idea so much, he named his party after the fasces.

As early as 1940, a New Jersey chapter of the Veterans of Foreign Wars called for removing the emblem from the dime. But it wasn't until Franklin Roosevelt's death that Congress decided to change the design. The new 10-cent coin pictured Roosevelt on one side, and the Torch of Freedom on the other. By a strange twist of fate, the last dime picturing the fasces was made in 1945 -- the same year Mussolini was killed.....

1938 Mercury Dime Reverse

1938 Mercury Dime Reverse

            Thomas LaMarre.

 

COLLECTING GARBER DIMES - A TALE OF DISCOVERY
by Michael E. Marotta

From http://www.limunltd.com/numismatica/articles/barber-dimes.html

I usually collect (if that is the word) bullion. I like silver Swiss francs and British empire sterling. I am also partial to mercury dimes. I have some bars. Mostly I put my money in 1964 kennedy halves (I won't even dignify that with capitals).

After reading Bower's book "Tremendous Profits from Old Coins", I decided to branch out. I started with Hard Time Tokens. (I like the Jacksonian Era). But I lost interest in the series of 200 varieties not including the Feuchtwanger subgenre. After talking for five minutes with a pharmacist who sells coins. I decided to go for the Barber Dimes in Fine and above. There are no keys and 13 semi-keys. The most interesting variety is the 1893 3 over 2. Only one is impossible, the 1894-S. known in proof only; $12,250 in 1965 and $275.000 in 1990 at Stack's.

For these coins, there's quite a jump in price from VG to F, from about $2.50 to $15.00, actually. You see, the dime, quarter, and half were real money back then: "......shave and a haircut, 2 bits!" (OR $12.50 now). So, the coins really circulated. Because of the design, circulation took its toll on the details and Barber Dimes, Quarters, and Halves are hard to find in better grades. (Proofs do exist.) Better grades are so hard to find, in fact, that overgrading is a real problem. When I bought the coins, I accepted the grading offered based on genera! coin principles, the same way I looked at Hard Time Tokens: can you see the design on the turtle ?

Earlier this week thundershowers blew in and I was unable to work for most of the morning. So, I hauled out Photograde and a couple of lenses. What a sad, gray, wet day it was. I downgraded half of them; one went from XF to VG. Later, I took them to another dealer and their staff numismatist regraded them for me and all but one came up - on general principles, not according to Photograde. So, now I have a dozen Barber Dimes in Fine or better and one strong VG. Oh. I also have something else: knowledge.

In a machine shop class I took last year, we learned this; "Judgement comes from experience but experience comes from a lack of judgement." The ANA will be meeting in Detroit next year and I'll be there with my lenses and Photograde looking for Barber Dimes in Fine or better.

The lenses are special. After totaling my losses, I dug out an Edmund catalog and bought the equivalent in Bausch and Lombs.......

        Article written May, 1994.

FINAL COMMENTS BY YOUR EDITORS: How true what Michael Marotta says in this article. It "hits home" and can relate to anyone of us collectors. Your editors figure it's all the more reason to point out the importance of knowing how to grade one's coins. See you at our coin seminar in September.........

 

 

ALASKA TOKEN OF THE MONTH
by Roy Brown

 

Alaska Yukon Pacific Exposition (A.Y.P.E.)

Alaska Yukon Pacific Exposition Tokens Obverse

Alaska Yukon Pacific Exposition Tokens Obverse

In the summer of 1909 the city of Seattle, Washington's local civic leaders developed plans for the " The A.Y.P.E. World's Fair", to promote their economic and cultural ties to Alaska & the Canadian Northwest. It was located on the grounds of the University of Washington, and they are still using some of the buildings today.

The purpose of the World's Fair was to publicize the value of the Territory of Alaska & the resources of the state of Washington to the United States. The states of California & Utah, as well as British Colombia, Yukon Territory. China, Hawaii, & Japan joined Alaska and Washington in erecting buildings.

The Fair ran for 138 days and had over three and one half million people through the gates. President William Howard Taft visited along with lots of other dignitaries and heads of state. It showcased Seattle as the up and coming commercial center of the Pacific Coast.

Three gold coins were made to be sold at the fair, "The Alaska AYPE DWT Series": One DWT, One Half DWT, & One Quarter DWT.

In the 1960 version of "Alaska's Coinage Through The Years", by Gould & Bressett, they have listings of 7 varieties of the one DWT - 7 varieties of the one half DWT - 5 varieties of the one quarter DWT.....

        Roy Brown

Alaska Yukon Pacific Exposition Tokens Reverse

Alaska Yukon Pacific Exposition Tokens Reverse

 


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-                    Loren Lucason    Eves: 272-3700
V. President-                John Larson       Eves: 276-3292
Treasurer-                      Robert Hall        Eves: 561-8343
Secretary-                   Larry Nakata        Days: 269-5603
                                                                    Eves: 563-1729

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

Board of Directors

Roy Brown-                      Days: 563-6708

Don Thurber-                  Eves: 338-7488

Mike Orr-                         Eves: 522-3679

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