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Chicago Coin Club
Volume 50 No. 12 December 2004

Minutes of the 1031st Meeting

First Vice President Robert Feiler called the 1031st meeting of the Chicago Coin Club to order on November 10, 2004 at 7:14PM. The meeting was held at the Chicago Bar Association.

A motion was made seconded and passed to accept the minutes of the meetings as they appeared in the The Chatter.

Treasurer Steve Zitowsky provided a treasury report as follows:

TCF Checking $3,503.57
Bank One CD 1,470.34
Bank One CD 1,472.34
TOTAL $6,446.25

Income from dues and raffle for last month amounted to $23.00. Expenses for awards ($29.36), postage ($352.13) and an expense credit for material reimbursement (-$116.00) amounted to a net expense of $242.49. A motion was made, seconded and passed to accept the Treasurer's report.

One guest was in attendance: Nikolai Vukic from Montenegro.

Old Business:
Robert Feiler reminded the members that the holiday banquet will be at the Alpine Haus on Wednesday December 8th at 11141 West Roosevelt Road (at Wolf), Westchester, IL 60154 (708) 409-8640. Cocktails begin at 6:00. Dinner is at 7:00. The cost is $23 if payment is received prior to 12/1. After 12/1 the price is $25 per person. Members were encouraged to send payment early so an accurate head count can be given to the restaurant.

Lyle Daly asked members to consider personal donations or donations solicited from merchants for the silent auction. Non-numismatic donations are welcome and may interest spouses. Lyle will provide Carl Wolf with further details in an email to be forwarded to members.

A speaker has been located for the event. Thom Chichelli is credited with the design of the Illinois State quarter and will lend his insight on the experience. A State Quarter give away is planned for the event with Thom's signature.

Robert Feiler reminded the members that the board has recommended that regular dues be increased to $20 per year, associates membership be raised to $10 per year and life membership be raised to $500. The increase would be effective January 1, 2005. A motion was made seconded and passed to accept the recommendation from the board and raise the dues.

Reading of Applications for Membership:
Member Cliff Mishler applied for life membership. This application will be forwarded to lifetime members for review and acceptance.

New Business:
Meeting location was discussed. The club will meet at the Chicago Bar for the January and February meetings. A search will continue for a less costly and equally convenient facility. No one was assigned to that task however DePaul and Columbia universities were discussed as possible sites.

Speakers and give-aways for the 2005 CPMX and CICF shows were discussed. Speakers are needed for both and a give-away must be developed for the CPMX. Bob Leonard is working on the stone money replicas for CICF. David Sundman was discussed as a possible speaker for the Mid America Coin Show in 2005.

A ten-minute recess was called to view the auction lots.

Auction / Show and Tell:
There was no show and tell. This was the annual club auction. Second Vice President Jeff Rosinia assumed the role of auctioneer. Kudos for Jeff, his performance was stellar; however, the running jokes typically provided by absent member Chet Poderski were sorely missed. Members made several attempts at humor but none reached the Poderski mark of excellence. Bidding was spirited and the results are published elsewhere in the Chatter. Of particular note was the spirited bidding between the Blockers. It was noted that Kevin Blocker assured that fair prices were realized.

The meeting was adjourned at 9:10 p.m.

Respectfully submitted by Lyle Daly

Speaker's Wor[l]d
Coins of Alexander the Great

Presented by John vander Weit to our September 8, 2004 meeting.

Although Alexander died in 323 B.C., coins bearing his name continued to be issued until about 70 B.C.. John concentrated his presentation on the tetradrachms, 16-gram coins made of silver as pure as was then possible; although the Roman coins would be debased over time, these tetradrachms maintained their weight and purity.

Pieces of nearly pure silver have an interesting property - after many hundreds of years, they start to crystallize, and thereby become weaker (more brittle). That is one reason that the "ring" test should not be used to separate a cast coin from a struck good-silver coin. Some members remembered that the ring test involves holding a coin upright, on a hard surface, and then lightly tapping the coin's edge with a pencil; a good coin would ring. Aside from possibly shattering the coin, another reason not to use the test is that sometimes a good coin does not ring.

John finds this an amazing series, with great history. Although the basic design did not change over time and location, there are many small distinguishing features to be found. The obverse design is only a bust of Herakles (that is Hercules in English) wearing a lion skin head dress. The basic reverse has a seated Zeus, the name Alexander in Greek to the right of Zeus, and the word Basileos ("king" in Greek) under Zeus; some other small markings such as a monogram or an amphora fill out the design.

The current reference is the two-volume work by Martin Jessop Price, published in 1991. The first volume is an index, by design elements, letters, monograms, and such. The second volume shows the coins along with much information about each coin. John explained how some characteristics can help indentify where and when the coin was minted. The die alignment is one such attribute; some types are known with alignment all over the compass, while other types are known approximately 180° aligned.

The first coin John showed was a lifetime issue; as was the next coin (issued about 325-323 B.C.) which was from the Babylon mint. The early flans are usually not very wide but they are very thick, with the designs commonly struck off center. Later years used a wider flan, but it was thinner so that it contained the same amount of silver.

John used a number of coins from his collection to show both the subtly different styles from different times and places as well as interesting distinguishing marks which aid in identifying a coin's mint.

A coin from the Amphipolis mint (320-317 B.C.) has the legend "Alexander Basileos" curving around the border instead of the usual straight lines in the usual places. A later coin, from about 210-190 B.C., has the sphinx mintmark of Chios and two monograms; John thinks they might denote the minter, but this coin is unlisted in Price. There are over 100 mints mentioned in Price, but new hoards coming on the market might be the source of material destined to be identified as not in Price.

A coin from Phoenicia (320-317 B.C.) has a boar head mint mark, which is rare. A coin from the Aspendus mint was made in 206-205 B.C.; this coin is from one of the few mints which used a different mark for each year.

Although the early issues generally were well executed, changes appeared over time and distance. The realistic portrait on the earlier issues sometimes was replaced with cruder ones. But not all changes were the result of bad die makers; when a design element was foreign to a culture, that element was susceptible to changes. One coin with a crude obverse had a well executed reverse, but Zeus' throne was rendered as only two legs - no back and no seat; chairs were not used in some parts of central Asia. Another coin, from Magnesia ad Meandrum (225-200 B.C.), has a not-great style, is on a large flan, and has a "meander" pattern instead of the legend "Basileos;" indicating that the die engraver did not know the Greek alphabet, as was probably true of the local population.

John concluded by showing some barbarous imitations of these greek tetradrachms, starting with a copy of a coin of Phillip II (Alexander's father); the legends are gibberish as they did not know Greek. The Danubian Celts issued some beautiful coins; the style is different, but still well executed. The last piece shown was a fouree of a drachm; a struck contemporary counterfeit, with the flan consisting of silver foil on a copper or bronze core.

Auction Results
November 10, 2004

The club netted $295 from the auction from its own material and thanks to generous consignments from members: $83 from the remaining Tallies, $35 from Donn Pearlman's lots, and $177 from Mike Dolnick's lots. These are the realized prices for the lots listed in the November Chatter; additional lots were consigned just before the auction.

127, 129-1323.00

Our 1032nd Meeting

Date:December 8, 2004
Time:6PM to 7PM reception
7PM to 9 PM+ Dinner and Meeting
Location:Alpine Banquet Haus located at 11141 West Roosevelt Road (at Wolf Road), Westchester, IL 60154. Phone 708-409-8640. The location is very easy to get to and there is ample FREE parking only a few feet from their front door.
Menu:The dinner meal will be served family style and consists of: Rolls and butter, Soup, Salad, Mixed Vegetables, Mostaccioli, Dumplings, Wienerschnitzel, Roast Pork, Chicken Vesuvio, and Apple Strudel.
There will be an open cash bar with a knowledgeable bartender.
The owner and chef is European trained and has worked for Hotel Nikko, Ritz Carlton, the Whitehall, Mayfair Regent International and Chez Paul.
The cost per meal is $25 per person ($23 if paid before December 1), checks should be made out to the Chicago Coin Club, and may be given to Steve Zitowsky or mailed to the club's mail box, P.O. Box 2301, Chicago, IL 60690.
Program:Thom Cicchelli on The Illinois State Quarter Story

Thom Cicchelli, a local graphic artist, submitted the artistic concept for the design stuck on the Illinois State Quarter. Join Thom at the Chicago Coin Club Annual Banquet on December 8, 2004 and hear his story of the concept design and his experience in seeing it struck. Those who attend will come away with a greater understanding of the work that goes into a coin design from concept, all the steps of production and finally struck and issued into circulation.

Silent Auction Benefiting
the Chicago Coin Club

A silent auction will be conducted at the December banquet meeting, concurrent with the cocktail hour and dinner. There will be no auctioneer. Each item will be displayed with a bid sheet adjacent to it. The sheet will describe the item and suggest an opening bid and a bid increment. The sheet will have several lines for bidders to write in their names and their bids. Bidders can watch the prices and take their time deciding on items while we socialize. We will close the auction by announcement a few minutes before the evening’s speaker is introduced. At the end of the evening, after the speaker and during dessert, the successful bidders may pay for and pick up their items which will be totaled during the speaker’s presentation.

I am asking members to consider making donations to the Annual Banquet silent auction. All proceeds will go the the club. The items need not be limited to numismatic items, however numismatic items are welcome. We want to have some items of interest to our guests.

Donated items do not have to be new but should be in like new condition (except coins ... don't polish coins). Antiques, tools, stained glass are all welcome. Thematic gift baskets are good.

Please contact me directly with details of your donation at 312 325-3306. It would be helpful if you could suggest an opening bid and the approximate retail value of the item in your desctiption. I want to wrap this up by 11/30 but I'll take donations at the banquet if you are willing to give.

So far we have ....

  1. Die cast metal 1/64 scale model of a Peterbilt Steelcase furniture delivery truck with original box and wrapping by Spec Cast, donated by Lyle Daly.
  2. Ceramic cream & sugar set from the estate of Rosemary Degenhardt Daly, donated by daughter-in-law, KL Robertson Daly.
  3. Vintage Notre Dame pennant, circa 1939 from the estate of Lyle Daly Sr. donated by son, Lyle Daly.
  4. Vintage Loyola pennant, circa 1939 from the estate of Lyle Daly Sr. donated by son, Lyle Daly.
  5. The photograph, Money and the Banker, is a study of images created and donated by Hungarian born photographer Ildiko Kresz of Fine Art PHOTO. Ildiko’s work has appeared in several local shows and she is a featured artist at BA Studio in Chicago.
  6. Raising the flag at Ground Zero … This photograph, taken by Thomas Franklin, speaks for itself. Donated by Nancy Maszka and husband Hal Burke.
  7. The quintessential “Guy’s Lamp”, manufactured by an Indiana craftsman from a vintage fire extinguisher. This item is seconded only by the famous “Leg Lamp” featured in the movie A Christmas Story. No man can live without one. This lamp is enthusiastically donated by KL Robertson Daly without Lyle Daly’s consent.
  8. For the Ladies from the Women in Management Members: Jewels by Park Lane, “Inspired by Tiffany” make a tasteful accent for the adult or the young lady; a nice bit of Bling Bling, donated by Laura Schultz Hanko. A $25 gift certificate for Avon products donated by Diane Whiston, a gourmet cake mix from Georgetown Spice Company and an autographed copy of a work by Mary Alice Monroe donated by KL Robertson Daly.
  9. The Discoverers Medal commemorates the 75th Anniversary of the Chicago Coin Club 1919-1994, in bronze donated by Mike Dolnick.
  10. Chicago Coin Club 500th Meeting - medal commemorating the event held in 1960. This barrel shaped bronze depicts the Chicago skyline and was donated by Bill Burd.
  11. A uni-face lead re-strike of the cancelled die for the Chicago Coin Club’s 50th anniversary medal designed by Trygve A. Rovelstad. It incorporates the detail of the head in his proposed "I Will" statue. This item was donated by Bill Burd.
  12. A dramatic off center strike of a clad Roosevelt dime is slabbed by NGC and graded MS66. The date is outside the field of strike and is therefore unknown. This item was generously donated by Robert Feiler.

The Chicago Coin Club would like to thank William Burd, Robert Feiler, Mike Dolnick, Nancy Maszka, Hal Burke, Ildiko Kresz,and Diane Whiston for their generous donations.

Lyle Daly

Important Dates

December 8 CCC Meeting - Annual Banquet - Featured Speaker - Thom Cicchelli on The Illinois State Quarter Story
January 12 CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - to be announced
February 9 CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - to be announced
March 9 CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - to be announced
March 18-20 11th Annual Chicago Paper Money Expo (CPMX) at the Holiday Inn O'Hare, 5440 North River Road, Rosemont. Admission is $5 for Friday and Saturday; free on Sunday.
March 19 CCC Meeting - 1pm at the Chicago Paper Money Exposition, which is held at the Holiday Inn O'Hare, 5440 N. River Road, Rosemont, IL. No admission charge for our meeting.
Featured Speaker - to be announced.

Birthday and Year Joined

January 2 Al Sawyer 1999
January 16 Michael Metras
January 26 Jennie Sochon 1982

Chatter Matter

All correspondence pertaining to Club matters should be addressed to the Secretary and mailed to:

P.O. Box 2301

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Contacting Your Editor

Paul R. Hybert

Club Officers

Mark Wieclaw- President
Robert Feiler- First Vice President
Jeff Rosinia- Second Vice President
Directors:Lyle Daly
Mike Metras
Steve Zitowsky
Carl Wolf
Other positions held are:
Robert Weinstein- Secretary
Steve Zitowsky- Treasurer
Paul Hybert- Chatter Editor
Phil Carrigan- Archivist