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Volume 52 No. 7 July 2006

Minutes of the 1050th Meeting

Session I of the 1050th meeting of the Chicago Coin Club was called to order at 7 PM by First V.P. Jeffrey Rosinia. The meeting was held at Dearborn Center, 131 S. Dearborn, 6th floor Conference Room with 16 members and 3 guests present. Guests were Paul Robertz, Robert Kulys, both from the Chicago area, and Norman Falcon of Boca Raton, FL. Minutes of the May meeting were approved as published in the Chatter. A motion was passed to accept the treasurer’s report by Steve Zitowsky showing May revenue of $300.00, expenses of $100.30 and total assets of $10,547.51.

Member Phil Carrigan was the featured speaker on Charles Barber and His Coins. Following a question and answer period, he was presented with an educational certificate from the American Numismatic Association and an engraved Club medal.

Second V.P. Lyle Daly introduced the evening’s exhibitors: ROBERT LEONARD – lead counterfeit 1909 Barber dime, Steve Zarlenga’s recent book The Lost Science of Money, a book written by Jerome Smith The Coming Currency Collapse published by Zarlenga and some brief comments on how the books are at odds; MARK WIECLAW – five encapsulated coins brought into the coin shop that probably weren’t worth the time or expense: 20-Swiss franc, 1971 $10 Bahamas, 1999 half-oz American Eagle, a 2001 1-oz. gold 5000 lira from Malta, and a 1922 Peace dollar; DON DOOL – charity token 1700 from Parish of St. Dionys, Liege, Belgium, a bronze San Martin medal issued 1896 by a group of Buenos Aires newspapers, a stock certificate of Banco Mercantile Bahia issued 30 July, 1872, and napkins from Buenos Aires coffee shops, the beginnings of a new collection; DREW MICHYETA - 1996 $10.00 1-oz. rectangle fine silver bar issued as a coin by Liberia; PHIL CARRIGAN: a photo of a 1914-O Barber dime with the mint mark appearing at the top and speculation on how this possibly was achieved; WINSTON ZACK – coins found in rolls over the past month: 2004 proof nickel, 1915 Buffalo nickel, 1939 EF/AU Jefferson nickel, and a Lincoln cent in terrible condition but found in a nickel roll, plus a 1920 nickel found in a hardware store when he was five years old; JASON FREEMAN – 2004-D cent and a blank planchet, 2005 Boy Scout Jamboree medal, 1993 Afghanistan 50 Afghanis with a Deinotherium Elephant, and a State of Texas 2-troy oz. silver medal; EUGENE FREEMAN – 1936 doubled die obverse Buffalo Nickel, 1936 S/S Buffalo Nickel, doubled die reverse 1 centimo from Paraguay, a 1795 Irish half-penny, and 1900 Liberty Nickel struck on nickel-brass alloy planchet; LYLE DALY – encapsulated proof Barber dime and quarter from 1893 and half dollar from 1894, Monroe Doctrine commemorative half-dollar, the 1901 Pan American Exposition logo and their similarity where North and South America are represented by images of women, convergent designs between 25-cent gasoline tokens issued by Shell Oil and state quarter designs of Massachusetts and Illinois, and clasped hands designs on 3 medals and the 2004 nickel.

The applications for membership of Paul Robertz and Robert Kulys received first reading. Under old business Elliot Krieter reported an estimated cost of $600 to convert Beta Cam film to DVD format. The film was shot in 1984 of senior club members relating their early collecting experience. Paul Robertz volunteered to check with an associate who has used film recording equipment. Lyle Daly gave a report prepared by Robert Feiler on the cost of holding the annual banquet at the reopened Berghoff Restaurant at 17 W. Adams, downtown Chicago. The cost would be a minimum of $36.89 per person, plus $250.00 room rental with a minimum of 40 attendees. Everyone admitted it was a good idea, but felt the expense was probably too steep. No decision was made. Serial no. 1 of the 2006 Club issued souvenir sheets for the Chicago Paper Money Expo and Chicago International Coin Fair were presented to the Club Archivist, William Burd. A short discussion was held concerning the ANA convention coming to Milwaukee in 2007.

The meeting was recessed at 9:09 PM to be re-adjourned at 11 AM Saturday, June 24th at the Mid-America Coin Show.

Session II of the 1050th meeting of the Chicago Coin Club was held in conjunction with the MidAmerica Coin Expo, Donald Stephens Convention Center, 5555 N. River Road, Rosemont, IL. The meeting was called order by President Robert Feiler at 11 AM with 15 members and 5 guests: Charles Wilkinson, Kevin Daley, Bruce Benoit, Jeff Garrett and Robert R. Van Ryzin, Editor Coins magazine.

The featured speaker was Jeff Garrett from Lexington, KY, who spoke on his recently published book Encyclopedia of U.S. Gold Coins – 1795-1933: Circulating, Proof, Commemorative and Pattern Issues. Garrett told how he started dealing coins, his attraction to dealing gold coinage and how he quickly learnt how to spot counterfeits. He spoke of the importance of learning through books and the Web. The last half of Garrett’s talk was on the collection at the Smithsonian Institution which made up a large portion of the coins in his book.

After a question and answer period, President Robert Feiler presented Garrett with an ANA educational certificate and an engraved club medal.

Member Bill Bierly was introduced and spoke briefly on a certified 1865 pattern U.S. quarter he recently purchased at auction. Upon inspection he discovered the certification service and auction house overlooked that it was over-struck on an 1840-O quarter. Bierly spoke briefly on what was written about this pattern series and offered possible explanations on how this probably happened. The coin was in possession of another coin certification service on the bourse floor and Bill told members where they could go to see it.

The meeting was adjourned at 12 noon.

Respectfully submitted,
Carl Wolf, Secretary

Speaker’s Wor[l]d
Charles Barber and His Coins

Presented to our June 14, 2006 meeting.

Charles Barber succeeded his father William as mint Chief Engraver in 1879. He served in this capacity until 1917. Charles was responsible for engraving dies for many mint products including the Assay Commission medals from 1880 to 1897and numerous mint medals. He designed several coins including the 1883 Hawaiian silver coins, commemoratives in silver (e.g., Isabella & Lafayette) and gold (e.g., Lewis & Clark and McKinley). Most collectors know Charles Barber for his silver dimes, quarters and half dollars initially minted in 1892 and continuing until 1915-1916. Of lesser renoun, is the Barber five cents, first released in 1883. All four of these types have been known as Liberty Head coins though the five cents retains this designation while the silver types are usually called Barber dimes, etc.

The presentation then focused on the Barber silver series. David Lawrence (Feigenbaum) was acknowledged as the contemporary researcher and promoter of Barber coins. This was the result of his research and books dedicated to each series and to his extensive inventory of these coins during the 1980s. Barber varieties were discussed and examples of the 1892 New Orleans micro ‘O’ mint mark and the 1897-S quarter with center position of the ‘S’ were shown.

In the past twenty years, collecting emphasis on these Barber series has been aided by Lawrence’s pioneer efforts including the establishment of the Barber Coin Collectors’ Society in 1989.

Philip J. Carrigan

Speaker’s Wor[l]d
Encyclopedia of U.S. Gold Coins - 1795-1933

A presentation by Jeff Garrett to our June 24, 2006 meeting.

In this presentation inspired by his recent book, Jeff wove together three stories: his interest in U.S. gold, how the book came about, and the Smithsonian.

Jeff initially had many collecting interests, among them medals and tokens which were inexpensive and easy. His interest in gold coins started in the late 1970s, while working at Florida Coin Exchange. He considers himself lucky to have enterred the coin market during the boom in gold prices. Many things came out of the woodwork during that exciting time. But not every experience was a happy one; after returning from one road trip buying gold coins, he was told that many of them were counterfeit.

The High Relief Saint-Gaudens gold is a great coin because it is beautiful and has a great story, not because it is rare. Jeff buys and sells a number of them each year. But Jeff wanted us to remember that what makes a coin great are the stories that pull it all together.

There are many ways to collect gold coins, by type and by mint being just a few. Among the highlights was a Dahlonega uncirculated gold collection which he helped a collector to slowly form as nice coins became available. An interesting accumulation consisted of 15 1929 double eagles, put away just before Roosevelt’s order to turn in gold coins.

Next, Jeff told the story behind his gold coin encyclopedia; kind of a long story, where things finally came together. David Akers’ books on gold coins came out when Jeff started in coins; they contained ground breaking information, some of which holds even after 30 years. The books gave Jeff an edge — information was not as wide spread as now. But many things have happened since the books came out: grading services, the discovery of shipwrecks, and more.

Jeff enjoys research; information helps expand the collector’s interest. Jeff started the Auction Records of U.S. Coins to collect the information — those books now are published by Whitman. Taking into account years, denominations, and mints, there are 1500 different U.S. gold coins. It took 4 to 5 years to get those books started, then he started his recent books. During the six months preparing 100 Greatest U.S. Coins, Jeff talked about writing a gold book; he finally convinced himself by reasoning that since he could put together a thousand-lot auction catalog in a reasonable time, a 1500-item book should not be too bad.

First he had to get photos of 1500 coins. The Smithsonian had extensive gold coin holdings, so the idea of photographing the Smithsonian coins was proposed as a way for the Smithsonian to get exposure. Gaps had to be filled from other sources, but the encyclopedia is missing photos of only two coins: 1839 $5 and 1844-O $5; aside from those, every U.S. gold coin, including proofs, is shown.

Tom Mulvaney was used to photograph the Smithsonian gold coins, a task estimated to take one week. But the wall mounted glass cases hoding the coins held a surprise — wax was used to mount the coins! Wax fragments stuck to the coins, and the coins had to be remounted; stretching the scheduled week by quite a bit.

The two major sources of the Smithsonian’s U.S. gold collection were the U.S. Mint’s collection in the 1920s and the the Lilly collection in 1968. The mint collection had been started in the 1820s, and what strikes Jeff about the collection is the great condition of the early gold coins. (The early silver proof coins have not fared as well; their tarnish was removed in the 1800s by polishing, an accepted practice at the time.) The mint collection received then-current coins as well as interesting material pulled from coins turned into the mint. The Lilly collection added business strikes from the Philadelphia mint and the branch mints.

Jeff talked about the smaller coin exhibits now at the Smithsonian, and mentioned that the gold coins are stored in little boxes kept on trays; so concerns about cabinet friction were made. The presentation ended with audience questions about grading standards for gold coins and how hard it is to describe what exactly gives away a doctored coin.

Don Urchel

Don Urchel, a Chicago coin dealer for over 40 years, died on May 26, 2006 in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

Don, 83, co-owned DARU Coins on the Southwest Side of the city from 1964 to 1995. He joined the Chicago Coin Club in 1963 and remained a member until his health began to fail. He was also an ANA Life Member, number 461.

A veteran, Don served in the Army Air Cadets from 1943 to 1946. He then returned to Chicago and resumed his job as a riveter for the Link Belt Company, later FMC Corporation. He worked there for 28 years. He retired from the factory job in 1968 so he could manage the coin store full time.

Besides his wife, other survivors include two sons, Ray Urchel and Richard Wittig, daughters-in-law, Maureen Urchel and Judith Wittig, and three grand children.

William Burd


Condolences goes out to several long-time members. Joel Reznick, who joined the CCC in the early '80s, lost his wife Renee (Ricki) this past May. Then, just last week, more sad news arrived that Irene Vink, wife of 50+ year member Martin Vink, passed away in September, 2004. The next time you see Joel or Marty, take a minute and express some words of comfort and support for this most difficult time in their lives.

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Show and Tell

Items shown at our June 14, 2006 meeting.

  1. Robert Leonard brought more books than coins:
  2. Mark Wieclaw showed some slabbed pieces that have arrived at the shop. With the better slabbing companies charging $8 or $15 per slab, the current market price for some of these is less than the slabbing fee.
  3. Don Dool continued some past themes and started a new fun topic:
  4. Drew Michyeta likes the silver pieces. He showed a 1996 Republic of Liberia $10 one ounce rectangular silver bar. It looks like an art bar; Drew cannot think of any other issuer of denominated ounce bars. Issued to honor the unification of Hong Kong with China, the reverse shows the Great Hall in Beijing and a Hong Kong city scene.
  5. Phil Carrigan brought a Barber-related item. Phil received a letter from a woman whose mother has a Barber coin; he has not seen the coin yet, but he showed us a photo. It looks like a worn 1914 dime, except for the O mint mark above the right stand of the N in ONE. The New Orleans mint issued no coins after 1909. Phil thinks someone added the mintmark as practice for adding a mintmark to an 1895 dime, but cannot see how they did it from the photo. The mintmark is too far from the rim to have been produced by drilling in from the rim, but Phil has not seen the rim.
  6. Winston Zack recently bought $70 of nickel rolls for searching. He found: Then he showed the Buffalo nickel that started him on collecting coins.
  7. Jason Freeman showed a range of items:
  8. Eugene Freeman started with some coins and finished with a newspaper clipping: As a followup to a previous discussion of the source of the word Dixie to refer to the South, Eugene showed an 1893 article in the Richmond Dispatch. We know that some 10 dollar notes from New Orleans in the 1830s and 1840s have the word DIX (French for ten), and that the song Dixie was written in New York in 1859. The article mentioned that circus people of the North referred to the South as Dixie, especially when the weather in the north turned cold and they wished to be south.
  9. Lyle Daly showed some coins and then continued tracing the reuse of design themes.

Our 1051st Meeting

Date:July 12, 2006
Time:7:00 PM
Location:Downtown Chicago
At Dearborn Center, 131 S. Dearborn, 6th Floor, Conference Room 6A (right off the elevator lobby). Please remember the security measures at our meeting building: give a club officer the names of all your guests prior to the meeting day; and everyone must show their photo-ID and register at the guard’s desk.
Featured speaker:Steve Feller - A Numismatic Look at German Occupied Guernsey and Jersey

The British Channel Islands of Guernsey and Jersey were the only bits of the British Isles to be occupied by Germany during WWII. The islands were occupied from 30 June 1940 until the day after VE day, May 8, 1945. This talk will focus on the various German and British currerncy issues in circulation during the occupation. Four distinct issues of money will be discussed. Original data from contemporary sources will be used. The presentation will be based, in part, on a research visit to the islands during February 2006.

Important Dates

July 12 CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - Steve Feller on A Numismatic Look at German Occupied Guernsey and Jersey
August 9 CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - Winston Zack on 2006 ANA Summer Seminar
September 13 CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - to be announced
October 11 CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - Andrew J. Donnelly on Tetrarchic Mint Control, 284-324

Birthday and Year Joined

August 11 Clifford Mishler 1995
August 19 Carl F. Wolf 1979
August 20 Melvyn Frear 1989
August 26 Tom DeLorey 1984
August 26 Donald H. Doswell 1960
August 29 James M. Rondinelli 1997

Chatter Matter

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

P.O. Box 2301

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

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