Chatter


Volume 63 No. 11 November 2017


2018 CCC Dues are Due

Although we are sending out the dues notice a month earlier than usual, the dues cycle remains on a calendar year basis. Your 2017 dues are good through December, 2017 — please pay your 2018 dues before the start of 2018.

Check the outside of your printed Chatter. A slip of yellow paper stapled outside the cover indicates that, according to our records, you have not paid your dues for 2018. Please mail the dues to the address on that slip, or bring them to our next meeting. For members who are notified by email when a new Chatter issue is available, the email stated if you have not paid your dues for 2018.


Minutes of the 1186th Meeting (Session I)

Session I (see August 16, 2017 Board Minutes) of the 1186th meeting of the Chicago Coin Club was held Wednesday, October 11, 2017 at the Chicago Bar Association Building, 321 S. Plymouth Court, Downtown Chicago. President Richard Lipman called the meeting to order at 6:45 PM with attendance of 15 members and 1 guest, Brian Schilling.

The Minutes of the September 13, 2017 meeting, as published in the Chatter was approved. Steve Zitowsky delivered the treasurer’s report of September: revenue of $35.00, expenses $252.00, and total assets $25,769.73. A motion was passed approving the report.

It was announced that Lawrence Lee had submitted 2017-18 dues and a motion was passed reinstating his membership.

Old Business:

New Business:

First VP Mark Stackler introduced the featured speaker, Brett Irick, of Detroit, who delivered a presentation Building a Type Set of Mexican Coins. Following a question and answer period, Marc presented Brett with an engraved Club speaker medal and an ANA Educational Certificate.

Second VP John Riley announced the evening’s twelve exhibitors. Mark Wieclaw: a double sestertius of Roman Emperor Aurelian, 3 custom made coin year (Proof and Mint issues) sets, and a $1.00 note with the serial #F19151973L. Robert Leonard: 4 coins of Julius Caesar and coin of Cleopatra VII. Deven Kane: 3 Islamic coins and 2 coins of Romanov Russia. Rich Lipman: a Barclay’s travelers check, African Banknotes with agricultural theme, and banknotes from regional banks in Portuguese Macau. Dale Lukanich: 5 cut Celtic coins, and 3 Illinois broken banknotes. Bill Burd: 1967 correspondence from Chicago Coin Club (and response), and two Canadian coin sets of 1967. Andrew Michyeta: 1919 silver coins for a club project. Lyle Daly: a 1944 5 Centavos, a 2017 American Liberty $100 coin, and a world’s fair souvenir. Bob Feiler: 10 early Mexican coins of various denominations. Richard Hamilton: examples of new polymer $10 Canadian notes. Steve Zitowsky: a 1904 nickel, and WWI “trench art” on a French coin. Brett Irick: Canadian $10 polymer banknotes, and his membership card in the Polish Numismatic Society.

The meeting was recessed at 9:20 PM.

Respectfully Submitted,
Carl F. Wolf, Secretary


Speaker’s Wor[l]d
Building a Mexican Type Set Collection

a presentation by Brett Irick,
to our October 11, 2017 meeting.

Coinage started in Mexico City in 1536, at the first mint in the New World, using the M mint mark. Coins were struck in copper, silver, and gold, with the vast majority struck in silver. The copper coinage was not well liked by the residents as they viewed copper as an undesirable metal. Before the Spanish arrived, the locals wore gold and silver jewelry. Gold coins were not minted heavily due to the smaller supply of it, relative to silver. The silver initially came from the Taxco area about 100 miles southwest of Mexico City. The coin types in this presentation are the types Richard A. Long recommended some years ago to those beginning a type collection of Mexican coins.

A very small number of 8 reales coins were made in the 1530s, with only three examples known today. It was hard to strike well these large coins, about the size of a US silver dollar, with the available equipment. The 4 reales coins issued up to 1571 are affordable and available to collectors, so there is no need to look for a sea salvage coin. Expect to pay a few hundred dollars, or go for a 1 real at just over $100. These coins are relatively round and of good quality. There are no dates on these coins, but the assayer’s initials can be used to put a date range on a specific coin. Brett showed us a coin produced under assayer L. Luis Rodriguez from around 1547 to 1553. The mint mark was changed to Mo to distinguish these coins from those made at the mint in Madrid.

With the tremendous amount of silver mined in Mexico by the 1570s, coupled with the need in Spain for coins as quickly as possible, the cob coinage was introduced. This crude method resulted in large amounts of crude looking coins that still had an accurate weight. The planchets were cut from bars or ingots of silver using an axe, resulting in a wide range of odd shapes. The design seldom fit entirely on a planchet, and a cob with a full date is very rare. The common cobs can be bought for a few hundred dollars, but the 1704 (full date!) 8 reales that Brett showed us goes for much more. It was relatively easy to shave a little corner off of a silver cob without it being obvious – eventually, much of the circulating coinage was underweight. Cobs were made until the introduction of milled coins in the 1730s.

These round coins were struck on a human powered screw press; their beaded edge made it difficult to shave off metal without it being noticed. Many denominations, up to 8 reales, were struck from 1731 to 1771. The 8 reales coins were nicknamed “the Spanish milled dollar” and were the circulating coin of choice in what was to become Canada and the United States. In the US, these coins and the later bust design coins were legal tender until 1857. The obverse shows the world as two hemispheres, topped by a crown and flanked by two columns – the Pillars of Hercules – resulting in their “pillar dollar” nickname. The reverse has a crowned Spanish shield flanked by the assayer’s initials and its denomination as a number of reales.

The bust of the current monarch appeared on the obverse starting in 1771, and remained there until 1821 when Mexico gained its independence. The reverse has a crowned shield flanked by two columns. This basic design appeared on all silver denominations, size permitting. A bust 8 reales can be purchased in almoust uncirculated condition for a few hundred dollars.

The Mexican War for Independence lasted from 1810 to 1821. For the first time, mints opened outside of Mexico City. Many emergency coin issues were made with various designs and by both sides. Suggested type coins from this era can be an 8 reales from a Morelos SUD by the revolutionaries to a Royalist mint in Durango (Do), Gudalajara (Ga), or Zacatecas (Zs). This is another area where a collector can easily be distracted into starting a specialized collection.

In 1822, the former royalist officer Augustin Iturbide was crowned Emperor Augustin I. But finances were precarious and Augustin had harsh policies, so he was forced to abdicate in 1823, resulting in the First Republic of Mexico. Augustin’s coins featured his bust on one side and a Mexican eagle atop a cactus on the other side – the eagle was crowned until the Republic started. Suggested type coins are the ½ real and 8 reales which are available for a few hundred dollars.

The Mexican republic started issuing coins in 1823. Much of Mexico was a fairly lawless area from the early republic into the early 20th century. To reduce theft, more mints were authorized in the mining districts, to mint coins for local use and for export. As before, copper, silver, and gold coins were minted, and the copper coins did circulate. Almost all coinage continued to be made on human powered screw presses until the 1880s. The first coinage of the republic, from 1823-1825 is nicknamed Hook Neck because of the shape of the neck of the eagle on the reverse of the coin – the obverse design was Cap and rays. Because of the large amount of metal that had to move around during striking, this design was very hard to fully strike up, resulting in a transition to a facing eagle design in 1824. Good quality examples of the ½, 2, or 8 reales hook neck are available from $200 to $800. If you might specialize in this area, buy the book Hookneck by Clyde Hubbard and David O’Harrow.

With a few exceptions, the facing eagle design was used from 1824 to 1897. Many coins were produced, and nice uncirculated examples of common dates can be purchased for a few hundred dollars. Many collectors specialize in this series, Decimalization was introduced in 1861, just before the French invasion, with 1 peso, containing 100 centavos, replacing the 8 reales. The book Resplandores by Mike Dunigan and J.B. Parker covers all of the hook neck, cap and rays, and facing eagle coins, by date, mint, and assayer from 1823-1897, and should be bought if you might stay in this area.

The Empire of Maximilian, 1863-1867, provided a short break from the coin designs of the republic. A Maximilian 1 peso can be bought for under $100 in Very Fine condition, but beware of fantasy and counterfeit coins!

A balance scale replaced the cap and rays from 1869 to 1873. Its reeded edge made the 1 peso coins 1mm smaller in diameter and slightly thicker, while the weight remained the same as before. Because it was accepted at a lower value that the previous cap and rays coins, the cap and rays design soon returned and remained in use until 1897. A nice uncirculated coin can be bought for a few hundred dollars, while circulated pieces might be acquired for melt plus $30.

The Liberty Cap peso was introduced in 1898, was used through 1909, and was well accepted. Uncirculated examples sell for over $100, while a circulated coin might cost melt plus $25. Restrikes of the 1898 Mexico City issue were made in 1919, at both the San Francisco and Mexico City mints, at the request of the Republic of China. The San Francisco restrikes were all melted, but the restrikes have a few small known differences from the originals. The Caballito peso of 1910-1914 was designed by the French designer Charles Pillet. This coin design, of Liberty riding a horse, is considered one of the most beautiful in Mexican history. High grade examples cost a few hundred dollars. The new book Un Peso Caballito by Allan Schein is outstanding. This is the last peso coin with this weight of silver – the revolution starting in 1914 caused significant devaluation of the peso, a trend that continues today.

The Mexican Revolution of 1914-1917 required money to pay the forces on both sides. Some coins were produced, with the most common in silver with a denomination of one or two pesos. Some of these coins are very crude, especially the cast ones. Brett showed us an Army of the North peso, a two pesos in gold from Zapata, and one and two centavo coins from the Mexico City mint while Zapata occupied it.

Brett concluded the silver coins with three types: the 1921 Winged Victory two pesos was issued for the centennial of Mexican Independence, the Chief Cuauhtemoc 5 pesos from 1947-1948, and the 1950 Railroad 5 pesos. The rest of the presentation covered the gold coinage of Mexico, which were denominated in escudos for hundred of years, with one escudo valued at 16 reales of silver.

You missed a great program at our October meeting, but this report must end here, without mention of the shown gold coins, so I can work on other parts of this issue.


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Show and Tell

Items shown at our October 11, 2017 meeting,
reported by John Riley.

  1. Mark Wieclaw showed a range of items.
    1. Three custom-made coin year sets holding both the proof and mint issues for each year, along with a contemporary photo of the recipient. These are part of a complete run of sets formed from 1956 through 1972, using custom holders made by Capitol. Coins from 1856 and 1956 are in one holder.
    2. A large bronze double sestertius of Aurelian, with his wife Severina on the reverse.
    3. A $1.00 note with the serial #F19151973L. This led Mark to identify famous people who were born in 1915 and who died in 1973 – the two names he identified so far were not quickly recognized by the members.
  2. Bob Leonard showed four coins, all somehow tied to Julius Caesar: In 63 BC, Caesar was elected Pontifex Maximus (chief priest). In 49 BC he defied the Senate and crossed the Rubicon at the head of his legions, invading Roman territory; his enemies fled, and in Rome he was appointed Dictator, seized the treasury, and minted over 22 million elephant denarii. In 46 BC, he was appointed Dictator for 10 years, and in 45 BC, Dictator for Life.
    1. A silver denarius from 49 BC, with an “Elephant Trampling Serpent” obverse, but the “serpent” is actually a Gallic war horn or carnyx, reflecting Caesar’s victories in Gaul. The priestly tools on the reverse reflect Caesar’s earlier appointment as a priest. Like Hitler, Caesar goes by only one name. He gives himself no title.
    2. An orichalcum (brass) dupondius from 45 BC, while Caesar was Dictator for the third time. The obverse features the figure of Victory, while Caesar’s name is misspelled “CASAR”. The reverse shows Minerva holding a trophy, and the name of the moneyer. This is the first Roman brass coin, an innovation of Julius Caesar.
    3. A silver denarius from 44 BC, while Caesar was Perpetual Dictator. Caesar’s portrait – a shocking innovation – is on the obverse, while the reverse shows Venus and the moneyer’s name. Caesar was assassinated on March 15, 44 BC.
    4. As a bonus, a coin of Caesar’s paramour, Cleopatra VIII, queen of Egypt. The obverse shows her portrait, and the reverse an eagle, M for 40 copper drachmae, and her name in Greek. This coin was purchased many years ago from the late Charlie Wolfe, who apologized for the poor condition – but pointed out that the last four letters of her name, ATPA, were clear. Cleopatra lived in Rome when coins b and c above were issued.
  3. Deven Kane showed a range of coins.
    1. A silver dirham from Samarqand in 904AD, showing minor weakness in the strike. It was issued by Isma’il b. Ahmad who ruled Samanid (part of what is modern Iran, and points east) in 892-907 AD.
    2. A silver dirham, immitating the above coin, from the Volga-Bulgarians. At 28mm in diameter, this piece shows minor areas of weak strike at the periphery.
    3. A gold dinar of the Ayyubids, from the Al-Qahira mint in 1230 AD, under Al-Kamil Muhammad I who ruled 1219-1238 AD. Both sides have a central legend about the ruler, while the outer margin holds the Kalima and Quran 9:33 on one side, and the date and mint in the other side’ margin.
    4. A ruble of Elizabeth, the last Romanov Empress of Russia, from 1741 to 1761. The obverse bust of Elizabeth is crowned and draped, and the surrounding legend gives her title. The reverse has a crowned imperial double eagle and the 1745 date. The smooth edge on this 40mm diameter piece has an inscription for the Moscow mint.
    5. An 1844 silver ruble of Nicholas I Pavlovich (1825-1855) of the Russian Empire. The obverse of this product of the Saint Petersburg mint has a crowned double-headed imperial eagle with the shield of St. George on the breast and with six provincial coats-of-arms on the wings. The reverse has a central legend of coin ruble and the date, flanked by a wreath of olive and oak. Czar Nicholas I never issued circulating coins that depicted him.
  4. Rich Lipman showed a range of paper items.
    1. A 1960 Barclays Bank flyer to merchants, showing a sample Travelers check for 50 pounds sterling, with explanation of use, who is “payer,” and who is “payee.”
    2. African banknotes representative of natural and agricultural themes – the story of civilization represented by images on notes from: Djibouti, Mali, Egypt, and Italian Somaliland.
    3. Two 10 patacas banknotes issued by “regional” banks, as opposed to a central government, in Macau in southern China. From the Banco Nacional Ultramarino and Banco da China, each of these recent notes features a different animal – issued for different lunar new years, each note features one of the twelve animals in the Asian zodiac.
  5. Dale Lukanich showed cut coins and local currency.
    1. Five cut Celtic coins, one of which is a bronze or brass fouree, or contemporary counterfeit – coins were cut to make change or to verify they contain good metal.
    2. Three Illinois broken banknotes from 1839, financing the I&M canal. The notes displayed unusual serial numbers characteristics of this series – the pair of three-digit numbers are not the same! One note had serial numbers of 606 and 660, the same digits but not in the same order. Dale prizes a recent acquisition of a note with serial numbers 8 and 728. Another note does not follow the normal countersigning technique.
  6. Bill Burd showed a letter written by the Chicago Coin Club in 1966 to the US Treasury Department requesting the upcoming Canadian $20 Gold coin commemorating Canada’s centennial be placed on the list of coins for which import licenses would be issued. The Treasury Department replied declining the request, stating in order to be eligible a coin must be of exceptional Numismatic value. Further, it cannot be a modern issue made only for collectors. Canada created a coin set without the gold coin, which US citizens could purchase, and a set with the gold coin. Bill showed examples of both. The gold set he showed was a presentation set, so marked on the outside of the case, given in 1968 to Senator William Benton by the Encyclopedia Britannica Company. 1968 was the 25th anniversary of Benton’s role as publisher and Chairman of the Board, and it also was the company’s bicentennial. This raised the question of why was this set allowed into the US.
  7. Andrew Michyeta showed additional 1919-dated silver coins to form an exhibit for the 2019 ANA convention in Chicago (the 100th anniversary of the CCC): 1 franc and 50 centimes from France, 50 cents from Newfoundland, 6 pence and 3 pence from Great Britain, and 10 cents from Canada.
  8. Lyle Daly showed a range of items.
    1. Lyle’s “Genesis Coin” – a 1944 five Centavos from Mexico, a souvenir brought back by his parents from their 1954 honeymoon.
    2. A tie bar, still on its original card stock, from the 1933 Chicago Worlds Fair Exposition.
    3. A 2017 American Liberty commemorative $100 coin for the US Mint’s 225th anniversary. The designer was Justin Kunz, so Lyle showed pictures of some oil-on-canvas works by Kunz.
  9. To complement the evening’s featured program, Bob Feiler showed a range of Spanish and Mexican coins.
    1. A Spanish quarto from 1469-1504, of Ferdinand & Isabella, 1474-1516.
    2. A Mexican 1 reale of Juana and Carlos, 1516-1556.
    3. A 1750 Mexican 8 reales, also known as a Pillar Dollar.
    4. A 1752 2 Reales from the Mexico City Mint.
    5. A 1755 ½ real from the Mexico City Mint.
    6. A 1759 8 reales (Pillar Dollar) from the Mexico City Mint.
    7. A 1782 ½ real from the Mexico City Mint.
    8. A 1786 8 reales of Carlos III, from the Mexico City Mint.
    9. A 1792 1 real of Carlos IV, from the Mexico City Mint.
    10. An 1885 Mexican 8 reales box coin containing a photo of a man with mutton chop sideburns connecting to a mustache.
  10. Richard Hamilton showed four examples of the new polymer $10 Canadian notes with security features, three of which have a portrait of Sir John A. MacDonald.
  11. Steve Zitowsky showed some recent acquisitions.
    1. A 1904 Liberty 5¢ “V-nickel” recently received in pocket change while out east in Baltimore. Although it was circulated and had green verdigris, it was clearly identifiable.
    2. Acquired in Tucson in March, a French 2 franc piece of the style issued from 1898 to 1920. One side had been smoothed and then engraved as a WWI “trench art” token for a US soldier. Using the text “Sgt JL Trevillion 5th Co. 3rd ASM” as a starting point, Steve tracked down the soldier’s military enlistment records and career after the Great War. Born in Nevada County Arkansas, he served in an Air Service balloon squadron the balloonists worked as artillery spotters.
  12. Brett Irick showed some recent acquisitions.
    1. Newly released commemorative Canadian sesqucentennial (150-year anniversary, 1867-2017) $10 polymer banknote with portraits of Sir George-Etienne Cartier, Sir John R. MacDonald, and James Gladstone. The challenge in acquiring new polymer notes from a bank in Canada is in ensuring the clerks never ran the notes through a counting machine which can leave fine scratches of the clear plastic parts.
    2. An international membership card (#2) of the Polish Numismatic Society. In Poland, the membership provides free-of-charge access to museums for the purpose of academic research.

Preview of Our December Banquet
(1187th Meeting)

Date:December 13, 2017
Time:6:30PM Cocktails (cash bar) and appetizers
7:00PM to 9PM Dinner and Meeting
Location:Grand Lux Café, 600 N. Michigan Ave, 2nd Floor (entrance around the corner at 111 E. Ontario St.), Chicago.
Menu: There is a full bar available for early arrivals, before 6:30, and a private bar from 6:30 to 9:30. The cost is $50.00 per person, and reservations are required. Make your reservation either by mail or at our meeting in November. Make your check payable to Chicago Coin Club, and either bring it to our November or December meeting, or mail it to P.O. Box 2301, Chicago, IL 60690.
• Freshly baked bread, freshly brewed coffee, Iced & hot Tea, Signature fresh lemonades, and fountain sodas are included in the pricing. A choice between three appetizers is planned: Beef and Chorizo Empanadas, Bruschetta, or Double Stuffed potato Spring Rolls. A Caesar salad. A choice between three entrees is planned: Miso glazed Salmon with rice and stir fried veggies; Parmesan crusted Pork Chop with mashed potatoes and green beans and carrots; Pasta Milanese (Chicken breast coated with garlic and parmesan bread crumbs) served over spaghettini tossed with tomatoes and lemon butter sauce, garnished with Asparagus and Parmesan.
• Please make reservations as early as you can so we can ensure an appropriate space.
Parking: Valet parking at 111 E. Ontario (cash); discounted garage parking at 10 E. Ontario as well as at ROW self parking at 50 E. Ontario.
Program: The speaker will be Stanley Campbell who will speak on numismatics in Cuba. See the December Chatter for details.
Agenda: Award Presentations

Our 1186th Meeting (Session II)

Date:November 8, 2017 – Annual Member Auction
Time:6:45 PM
Location:Downtown Chicago
At the Chicago Bar Association, 321 S. Plymouth Court, 3rd floor meeting room. Please remember the security measures at our meeting building: everyone must show their photo-ID and register at the guard’s desk.
Member Auction: You can place a reserve on each lot, and there is no commission charged to either the buyer or seller. Auction lot viewing will be held before the meeting starts, and again briefly before the auction starts.
Sorry – Due to circumstances beyond our control, there is no list of items in this Chatter.

Important Dates

Unless stated otherwise, our regular monthly CCC Meeting is in downtown Chicago on the second Wednesday of the month; the starting time is 6:45PM.

November 8 CCC Meeting - Club Auction  - no featured speaker
December 13 CCC Meeting - Annual Banquet  - Featured Speaker - Stanley Campbell on Cuban Numismatics
January 10 CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - to be announced
February 14 CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - to be announced

Chatter Matter

http://www.ChicagoCoinClub.org/

All correspondence pertaining to Club matters should be addressed to the Secretary and mailed to:
CHICAGO COIN CLUB
P.O. Box 2301
CHICAGO, IL 60690

Club Officers

Elected positions (two-year terms):
Richard Lipman- President
Marc Stackler- First Vice President
John Riley- Second Vice President
William Burd- Archivist
Directors:Melissa Gumm
Dale Lukanich
Mark Wieclaw
Appointed positions:
Elliott Krieter- Immediate Past President
Carl Wolf- Secretary
Steve Zitowsky- Treasurer
Paul Hybert- Chatter Editor, webmaster
Jeffrey Rosinia- ANA Club Representative

Contacting Your Editor / Chatter Delivery Option

chatter_editor@yahoo.com

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