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Chicago Coin Club
Volume 51 No. 4 April 2005

Minutes of the 1035th Meeting

Session I of the 1035th meeting was called to order at 7:00 PM by President Robert Feiler with 14 present. The only guest for the evening was Douglass Rohrman the featured speaker. The minutes as published in the Chatter were approved. Treasurer Steve Zitowsky reported February revenue of $160 and expenses of $611.19, leaving a balance of $8,123.34 in the treasury.

First Vice-President Jeff Rosinia introduced the evening's featured speaker, Douglass Rohrman who spoke on the exciting changes happening at the American Numismatic Society with their new location at 96 Fulton Street in New York. Rohrman spoke at length on the many fine attributes and the depth of knowledge at the ANS and encouraged every member of the CCC to join. Following the twenty minute talk, Jeff Rosinia presented Rohrman with an ANA educational certificate and a CCC engraved speaker's medal.

Exhibitors for the evening were: CHUCK JACOBS: reprint of the auction catalog from the King Farouk collection of 1954 and five Japanese 1938 1-sen pattern coins from that sale purchased by Hans Schulman, then sold to Chuck's father; MARK WIECLAW: four ancient Roman coins; ROBERT LEONARD: a London elephant token with an engraved date; JEFF ROSINIA: 2005 U.S. proof set and the new buffalo nickel; ROBERT FEILER: two 18th century countermarked coins, one from Portugal and another from Brazil.

Under old business Jeff Rosinia spoke on the work being done to secure a meeting room at Bank One. He also spoke on future programs including his hope that someone from the Federal Reserve Bank will agree to speak. Rosinia also showed the proposed souvenir sheet being worked on for the Chicago Paper Money Expo. Robert Leonard spoke of the planned souvenir sheet on primitive money for the Chicago International Coin Fair. The topic will be togo stones from Africa and showed a necklace of small stones that will be broken up and one included with each souvenir. Carl Wolf spoke on his efforts to secure a speaker for the CICF meeting.

Under new business, Bill Burd reported he was in full possession of the club archives and suggested that he may write some articles for the Chatter. Jeff Rosinia encouraged the club to sponsor a coin collecting project with the Boy Scouts and other youth groups

The meeting was called to a recess at 8:30 PM to be reconvened at the Chicago Paper Money Expo at 1 PM, Saturday, March 19th.

Session II of the 1035th meeting of the Chicago Coin Club was called to order at 1 PM by President Robert Feiler with forty-two members and guests present.

Mark Anderson from Brooklyn, NY was introduced as the featured speaker. Mark’s presentation “Hard Times in a Small Town Bank,” dealt with the First National Bank of Grantsburg, Wisconsin, a bank founded by his grandfather. The talk was accented by rare banknote souvenirs and family photographs emphasizing that every bank has a unique personal story. After a question and answer period, Mark was presented with an engraved CCC medal and an American Numismatic Association Educational Certificate.

A warm round of applause was given for Jeff Rosinia, CCC First V.P. following the announcement that he wrote and produced this year’s souvenir sheet. It told the history of The Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago and showed an image of their 1914 $2 national currency note with a battleship on the reverse side. Everyone in attendance received one.

With no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 1:50 PM.

Respectfully submitted, Carl Wolf

Speaker's Wor[l]d
Exciting Changes at the American Numismatic Society

Presented by Douglass F. Rohrman to our March 9, 2005 meeting.

Having been at their previous location for almost one hundred years, the ANS' planned move in September 2001 to lower Manhattan was expected to have some surprises and rough moments. The attack on the World Trade Center, located a few blocks away, guaranteed a stretching time line. The move is complete, and ANS Trustee Douglass Rohrman shared his and the ANS' excitement with their new facilities.

With Bob Leonard and a few other CCC and ANS members adding their own observations along the way, Douglass emphasized the benefits of the new location: twice the library space, a much more secure viewing area and procedures to examine pieces in the collection, and an enlarged display area which should be completed in 2007-8.

The move required a complete inventory, that all objects be identified and traced. With computer-based records, the library should encounter fewer cases of an item appearing in the card catalogue but not in its shelf space - or any shelf space, for that matter. With twice the space, the book collection will be better organized.

Security is an important concern, and no one will be left with material while not with an ANS staff member. Although ANS membership is not required to view items, members will receive preference in case of a line-up. Also, the collections are not for casual viewing: "Stack's was busy, so let me see some Morgan Dollars," will not be a successful request. They are looking for a statement of your research area and goals; serious numismatists only, but you just might be a serious numismatist if you are willing to visit New York just for research. Common sense applies, too; contact ANS and make an appointment before leaving home.

The catalogueing on the ANS web site suffers from the same shortcomings as its previous versions: different areas were catalogued by different volunteers at different times, so the style and quality varies. It will take time to bring consistency to the descriptions and images available on the web.

Dring the move from the old vault, there were surprise finds of little items that had "fallen through the cracks" of the old cabinets and racks; some still not fully explained. And then there were such tersely described items as a "Trafalgar collection" which consisted of 40 British medals awarded to combatants at Trafalgar (think of the age of sail and the Napoleonic era); a very important and notable grouping of medals bearing the name of the awardee.

In response to a question, Douglass was not aware of immediate plans to bring to the web the contents of such ANS-published works as Coinage of the Americas, or the Monographs.

Speaker's Wor[l]d
H.A. Anderson, The First National Bank of Grantsburg,
and Charter #8444

Presented by Mark Anderson to our March 19, 2005 meeting.

Combining family and banking history, Mark told the story of the bank which, started by his grandfather, survived the depression, and then was sold upon H.A.'s retirement in the 1940s.

Born in small town Sweden in 1874, H.A. Anderson emigrated in 1892 due to a lack of opportunity and compulsory military service. He took the train from Philadelphia to Wheaton, MN where he worked for Nils Nilsson. He also worked odd jobs around other western Minnesota towns such as Tracy and Canby, where he tried to advance through manual labor. He also learned about the real estate market, attaining a day job at the Lund Land Agency of Canby.

In 1902 he married Emma Johnson, also from Sweden, and by early 1903 was a cashier at the bank of Gary, SD. Mark described how the local real estate game was carried out a hundred years ago. But those were small towns with not much future for a banker. When H.A. started looking elsewhere for his American Dream, his good reputation came in handy. With capital provided by Dr. F.H. Wellcome of the Twin Cities, the Bank of Grantsburg, WI was founded as a state bank in 1905; Anderson was Cashier, and Wellcome was President. The bank converted to a National Charter in 1906, with Anderson in charge of day to day operations while Wellcome was president mostly in name only. Grantsburg is located 60 miles north of the Twin Cities, and 7 miles east of St. Croix River.

Mark had slides giving different views of the bank: a two-story wooden building, with large plate glass windows. In one, the advertised dividend to depositors was 4%. Mark mentioned that when he showed this slide in the 1980s, the joke was "What a low rate." Now, that rate does not look so bad. The town of Frederic had the nearest FNB, chartered only one month after H.A.'s bank. They were aggressive in the economic expansion of the 1920s, paying 4½% or 5%, and Mark told how H.A. would deal with a depositor wanting to transfer money to the competition; he would sit down with the depositor at a table with the money in a stack, and say, "You can have all of it, some of it, or keep it here." FNB Frederic failed in late 1931.

The new brick building was built in 1915, and a slide shows dirt streets with hitching posts along the bank. The building now holds the headquarters of the local electric company; as a side note Mark mentioned that H.A. had at one time turned down a loan application from that company.

Not many Grantsburg notes are known; two Large Size Notes and more than 10 Small Size Notes. The first note - top of sheet number 1 of 10-10-10-20 has the signatures of Anderson as Cashier and Wellcome as President. Another 10, this one from sheet 503, has signatures of Anderson as Cashier and local attorney S.F. Grover as Vice President. Wellcome remained President until his death in 1921, at which time H.A. bought the bank. H.A. was known to pick up notes from the Federal Reserve Bank in the Twin Cities, and then sign a few in a local restaurant before paying for his meal; they don't make bank presidents like that anymore. Mark remembers his own father, Burnett Anderson, saying how he would cut the sheets of notes at the dining room table. Later, Burnett was the Washington correspondent for Numismatic News, and on one slow news week, he wrote about his father and the bank. In response, a collector in Michigan wrote about his garage sale purchase of a Small Size Grantsburg 20, with serial number 1. After some work, it ended up back with an Anderson. At that point in the talk, someone from Krause was heard saying that now is a good time for a followup to the earlier article.

Mark still gets back to Grantsburg once or twice every year, and some of the places mentioned in the talk not only still exist, but provide meeting places to hear more stories about H.A.. In 1933, one of President Roosevelt's first actions was to close all banks for a bank holiday, with only those banks successfully examined being allowed to reopen. The local Federal Reserve Bank, phoned the bank at 9:01, and found it open. "Of course were are open; Roosevelt is not a customer or share holder." So the feds drove to Grantsburg, arriving near noon. H.A. met them outside, and took them to the local diner for lunch, to discuss the matter. Service was so slow, that it was near quitting time when they returned to the bank. The bank's records are very terse; Mark cannot determine what business was actually performed that day.

The talk concluded with notes from some of the towns where H.A. had worked; H.A.'s files yielded a Large Size Note from Canby bearing a Lund signature, the same Lund who had hired H.A. back in Canby many years before.

Show and Tell

Presented at our March 9, 2005 meeting.

Each image has a scale in the lower-left corner, with the tics spaced 1 mm apart. Because the brightness and contrast were manipulated on a computer, the coloring of a coin's image differs from the coin's actual coloring.

  1. Chuck Jacobs reminded us that the King Farouk Auction was held 50 years ago, two years after the king had been deposed. Baldwin created the catalogue and Sotheby ran the auction; Chuck showed a reprint of the auction catalogue. The descriptions were terse, and multiple-items lots predominated: the US 1933 double eagle was in a lot of 10 items, and the US 1913 Liberty nickel was part of the Liberty Nickel collection. In 1938, Japan issued five patterns for the 1 sen coin: some in bronze, some in aluminum; one with a tree leaf, the others with a bird in sun; and in a range of sizes. Jeff showed the five patterns, along with a letter from Hans Schulmann, on letterhead stationery of the Metropolitan Hotel Cairo, offering great deals on lots Hans would break up. That led to other members repeating stories they had heard about the auction's conduct.
  2. Mark Wieclaw showed some old coins along with some recent coins.
  3. Bob Leonard showed a 1694 London Elephant Token acquired from Balwin. The piece is very worn, and the "John Stagg 1709" engraved on the elephant decreases its attractiveness. Although listed in The Red Book, it probably was not made for use in the American Colonies. Bob has identified neither John Stagg nor the significance of 1709, but he continues his research.
  4. Jeff Rosinia showed a 2005 US proof set, and then passed around a roll of the new US nickels (with Jefferson and a Bison), letting each member keep one coin.
  5. Robert Feiler showed two similar-sized coins.

Dennis Fuller

Dennis was born May 5, 1941 in Oak Park and he was raised in Wheaton, attending grammar and high school there. Dennis resided in Forest Park for a number of years towards the end of his life.

He received a degree in political science from Colorado State University in 1963.

Unbeknown to most of us was the fact that Dennis was a championship long distance runner in college. One of his greatest achievements was beating the renowned distance runner Billy Mills who proceeded in 1964 to become a gold medalist. Dennis beat him not once but twice!

In 1964 Dennis was in one of the first regular Army units sent to Viet Nam where he served proudly as a member of the 1st Air Calvary.

Lack of job prospects and employment marketability motivated him to go back to college and acquire a second degree, this time in accounting from Chicago's Loyola University. Dennis used this accounting education to pursue a career as an accountant for a number of well known firms in the Chicago area.

Dennis particularly enjoyed the time he spent a number of years ago as a volunteer working as an assistant high school football coach and trainer.

Most of us are aware that Dennis was an avid numismatist specializing in the Civil War Era. We were not aware that he had an extensive collection of baseball caps from major university and professional football and baseball teams. When he was quite young his father took him to the horse racing track where he became fascinated with the ponies. He remained a big fan of the "sport of kings" throughout his adult life.

Dennis was divorced for many years and had two adult sons from a previous marriage who live out of state. His older brother who also lives out of state is a retired physician. The memorial services held to celebrate Dennis's life were private.

He was a good friend, intelligent with a quick sense of humor and a pleasure to be with. He will be missed by his many friends.

International Primitive Money Society
to Meet at CICF, 4PM on April 23

Indigenous Trade Jewelry of Africa

Chuck Mitton, a collector and student of African currency for more than thirty years, will speak before the International Primitive Money Society (IPMS) at the Chicago International Coin Fair. The meeting will take place on Saturday, April 23 at 4 PM.

A popular way to show wealth in Africa comes in the form of jewelry, primarily beads. Since the dawn of mankind Africans adorned their bodies with all sorts of indigenous materials made from stones, eggshells, seeds, nuts, shells, bones, tusks and teeth. Ornaments add beauty, provide a contrasting color against dark skin and accentuate body movement. Nowhere are ornaments as admired and highly-prized as they are in Africa. It’s only natural that body ornaments evolved from decoration, to desirable commodity, to trade item and then a medium of exchange. Even in 2005, many African societies still accept and welcome ornaments as a trade items.

Join Chuck Mitton at this fascinating talk illustrated with specimens from his collection. All collectors are welcome and membership in the IPMS is not required. Afterwards, interested attendees will go to dinner and exchange more information on primitive money collecting. Those who wish to participate should contact Carl Wolf at

Our 1036th Meeting

Date:April 13, 2005, First session
Time:7:00 PM
Location:Downtown Chicago
At the Chicago Bar Association (CBA), 321 S. Plymouth Court, in the Albert F. Holfeld Room on the 5th floor. Please remember the security measures at our meeting building: everyone must show their photo-ID at the security desk.
Featured speaker:Alex Molinas - Coin Grading Perspectives

Professionally involved in numismatics since 1988, Alex Molinas recently joined the international coin department at Harlen J. Berk Ltd.. Previously, Alex graded coins at the Numismatic Guaranty Corp (NGC) in Florida. Members attending this presentation will receive a greater understanding of the technical aspects in coin grading and how it equates to the retail market. Alex will explain what professional grading services look at and how they weigh each factor in a grade. General comments on strike, luster and cleaning will also be covered.

Date:April 23, 2005 Second session
Time:1:00 PM
Location:At the Chicago International Coin Fair (CICF), which is held at the Crown Plaza Chicago O’Hare, formerly the Holiday Inn O'Hare, 5440 North River Road, Rosemont, IL. No admission charge for our meeting.
Featured speaker:Clyde Hubbard, Cuernavaca, Mexico - The First Coinage of the Americas, Mexico City 1536

With the rapid increase in commerce of New Spain after the conquest, the need for a mint became urgent. It wasn't until May 11, 1535, however, that a royal cédula was issued, and the mint began operation the following year. Silver reales and copper maravedies, in eight denominations, were minted in the name of Carolus et Johanna (Charles I of Spain and Joan the Mad) as late as 1556. Mr. Hubbard will illustrate obverse and reverse of the major types and issues, and describe hoards of these coins, including a recent find in Cuba. Mr. Hubbard co-authored A Guide Book of Mexican Coins, co-authored the definitive study of 1824 eight reale coins and published in 1967 his first paper on the coinage of 1536.

Of interest to collectors of primitive money, every attendee receives a replica of Togo Stone Money accompanied by an original article giving the story of this little-known and fascinating currency. Since 1989, the CCC issued a primitive money souvenir with an original article to commemorate their CICF meeting. This 16th issue is written by CCC and IPMS member Robert Leonard.

Important Dates

Our April meeting will consist of two sessions: we will end the first session with a recess (instead of an adjournment), and we will reconvene for the second session at the Chicago International Coin Fair.
April 13 CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - Alex Molinas on Coin Grading Perspectives
April 22-24 30th Annual Chicago International Coin Fair (CICF) at the Crown Plaza Chicago O’Hare, formerly the Holiday Inn O'Hare, 5440 North River Road, Rosemont. Admission is $5 for Friday and Saturday; free on Sunday.
April 23 CCC Meeting - 1pm at the Chicago International Coin Fair (CICF), which is held at the Crown Plaza Chicago O’Hare, formerly the Holiday Inn O'Hare, 5440 North River Road, Rosemont, IL. No admission charge for our meeting.
Featured Speaker - Clyde Hubbard on The First Coinage of the Americas, Mexico City 1536
April 23 International Primitive Money Society Meeting - 4pm at the Chicago International Coin Fair (CICF), which is held at the Crown Plaza Chicago O’Hare, formerly the Holiday Inn O'Hare, 5440 North River Road, Rosemont, IL. No admission charge for the meeting.
Chuck Mitton on Indigenous Trade Jewelry of Africa
May 11 CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - to be announced

Birthday and Year Joined

May 2 Donn Pearlmann 1979
May 8 Sharon Blocker 2000
May 10 Marty Vink 1952
May 11 William A. Burd 1993
May 11 Jeffrey Rosinia 1995
May 15 Jay M. Galst 1991
May 17 Paul R. Hybert 1994
May 23 Robert J. Weinstein 1991

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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Club Officers

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