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Volume 53 No. 11 November 2007

Minutes of the 1066th Meeting

The 1066th meeting of the Chicago Coin Club was called to order October 10, 2007 at 7 PM by President Robert Feiler with 18 members and 1 guest (featured speaker) present. The meeting was held at the new location Chicago Bar Association, 321 S. Plymouth Court, 3rd Floor, Downtown Chicago.

The September Minutes as published in the Chatter were approved as printed. Members asked for more detailed directions in future Chatters to find Plymouth Court since it’s a small, infrequently used street. Treasurer Steve Zitowsky’s report was approved as read showing September income of $43.79, expenses $93.59 and total assets of $11,570.49.

Members stood for a minute of silence in memory of long-time member Chester Poderski.

Stuart Kleven delivered the featured program on Pre-Coinage Currency and Ancient Scale Weights. Following a question and answer session, Stuart was presented with an ANA Educational Certificate and an engraved CCC medal.

Second V.P. Lyle Daly introduced the evening’s exhibitors: DAVID GUMM — 1963 New Zealand penny, 1838 U.S. large cent tie-tack & 1829 U.S. large cent (N1-R3 XF45); DONALD DOOL seven bronze coins from 16-17th century Europe; MARK WIECLAW an 1851 $20 liberty gold pocket piece, three ancient Roman coins & a 1960 CCC barrel medal in 14kt. gold; ROBERT LEONARD Judean stone weight, Ashanti gold dust scale, Aes Rude (c. 500 BC), cut silver bar (1400-587 BC) & Celtic cut gold bar (c 400 BC 61 AD); ELLIOT KRIETER Euro notes and coins from a recent European vacation; MARC STACKLER three Mexican coins; STEVE ZITOWSKY - New Zealand token & 1906 U.S. Liberty-Head nickel with shattered surface; LYLE DALY Fugio Cent, book on President Wm McKinley & 1901 Pan Am Expo elongated cent.

Under old business a motion was passed to donate $50.00 to the American Numismatic Association Library in the name of Club members who passed away in 2007. Robert Leonard volunteered to author the 2008 CICF souvenir card on the subject of fur-money. Two mink collars purchased for $69 by Carl Wolf at recent yard sales would accompany each card and the Club authorized reimbursement.

Following Steve Zitowsky’s report on the December 12th annual banquet costs a motion was made and passed to charge $25.00 per person. Bill Burd, Chicago Coin Company, and Mark Wieclaw volunteered to cover the cost of hors d’oeuvres.

A brief discussion was held regarding the 2008 April Chicago conventions held on consecutive weekends: Central States Numismatic Society (April 16-19) and the Chicago International Coin Fair (April 24-27).

The meeting was adjourned at 9 PM.

Sincerely Submitted,
Carl F. Wolf, Secretary

Speaker’s Wor[l]d
Pre-Coinage Currency and Ancient Scale Weights

presented by Stuart Kleven to our October 10, 2007 meeting

Stuart’s interest in weights grew from his interest in Biblical coins. He recommends the book by David Hendin, Ancient Scale Weights and Pre-Coinage Currency of the Near East, published by Amphora in 2007.

Standards are as old and varied as ancient history. The Egyptian unit of length was the cubit; working cubits were made of wood, and were checked (at the full moon) against a master cubit made of granite. Stuart offered the base of a pyramid as an example of the accurate measurement of length: the four sides of the base differ by no more than 4½ inches, which is about 0.05% of their nominal length of 756 feet.

Although this appreciation for accuray carried over to local weight standards, the standards were just localized. As an example, Stuart mentioned the modern gram equivalent of the mina: 504 in Babylon, 470 in Ugarit, 570 in Judea, 436 in Greece, 450 in Phoenicia, and 517 in Rome.

Although local trading can accept bulky and cumbersome objects, long distance trading is easier when using smaller items. Bronze ingots in the shape of an ox-hide were one such item. Stuart showed pictures of some that had been recovered from a shipwreck off Cape Gelidonya, Turkey. Egyptian heiroglyphics from about 2500 BCE show ox-hide ingots.

The weighing of items is evident from the 3500 to 3000 BCE era in Egypt and Mesopotamia. Early civilizations typically used metals for weights, fashioned into various shapes and sizes. Pictures of tongue-shaped bronze ingots from the mid Bronze Age (2000 BCE) were just one of the items Stuart showed.

Over time, a set of weights ranging from small to large would develop in an area; over the span of centuries, the names of the most commonly used weights also were used as the name of that weight of a particular metal. As an example, the Judean weight system used a talent of about 34 kilograms, a mina of about 570 grams (60 mina in a talent), and a shekel of about 11.4 grams (50 shekels in a mina, or 3000 shekels in a talent). After the start of coinage, a common trade coin in the eastern Mediteranean contained a shekel of good silver, and that coin is known as a shekel.

Although there were many weight standards in the ancient world. there were only a few methods of actually weighing an object. The simplest was by hand: hold a reference weight in one hand, and the object to be weighed in the other — obviously, this was not very accurate. Two pans suspended from the ends of a beam provided better accuracy: place the object to be weighed on one pan, and some reference weights on the other pan — add or remove reference weights until the pans balance. But this method was only as accurate as the reference weights.

What did the weights look like? Anything and everything — they are known shaped as a dome, barrel, animal, square, and more; they are known in metal and stone; and very few had markings! They are so nondescript that early archaeologists considered them knick knacks at best, and discarded them.

Without markings, how can a weight be identified as such? The object’s weight must be near one of the standard weights for the area in which it was found. The context and provenance are important — without them an item can be identified only as possibly a weight of a particular standard. Some research has been performed on the composition of metal and stone weights from a particular area, but those reports are small and scattered.

Weighing continued well into the coinage era, and Stuart concluded his presentation with some Byzantine and Islamic weights.

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Show and Tell

Items shown at our October 10, 2007 meeting.

  1. David Gumm showed some copper coins:
  2. Don Dool added six pieces to his Kipper and Wipper collection (small copper pieces that were heavily debased). He had placed bids on ten lots in a recent auction; of the 49 pieces now in his collection, 48 are dated.
  3. Mark Wieclaw started with some items from the store before showing some ancient coins.
  4. Bob Leonard brought some items to complement the featured speaker, and then examined a possible case of buyer’s remorse.
  5. Elliot Krieter shared some numismatic reminiscences from a short European vacation in September. The euro notes are more colorful than US paper money, and their largest note is for 500 euros; he showed us some of the smaller notes. The coins have a common obverse but each reverse identifies the country of origin; he showed us denominations of 1 euro, 20 cents, 10 cents, and 1 cent. He found the Swiss francs interesting, pointing out the edge lettering on a 1996 5 franc coin. Near the msuems and such in Paris, he stumbled upon the Paris mint; it was an hour too late for the tour so he settled for a brochure. The Paris Mint Museum of Money is next to the mint.
  6. Marc Stackler showed three pairs of Mexican coins. One of each pair is the regular issue, while the other is something else.
  7. Steve Zitowsky showed two unusual pieces:
  8. Lyle Daly showed a range of US items:

Martin E. Vink

Martin Vink passed away Sunday, October 21, 2007 at the age of 91.

Marty was born May 10, 1916 and lived in West Pullman and later South Holland, Illinois. He was married to Irene Balla and they had two children, Janet and Martin.

Marty was a true numismatist and specialized in U.S. currency. He was a contributor in several currency catalogs and periodicals. He was a life long friend of Chet Poderski who passed away on September 17th. They would travel together to coin shows and local coin clubs including the Chicago Coin Club.

Marty joined the Chicago Coin Club in 1951, became member 564 and was sponsored by Glenn Smedley and Harry X Boosel. For a short time he was Chatter Editor for the CCC. He began collecting in 1949 and became a member of the American Numismatic Association shortly thereafter. He also belonged to several local coin clubs. Funeral services and visitation was at DeYoung-Vroegh Funeral Home in South Holland. Interment was at Mt Vernon Memorial Estates, Lemont, Illinois.

William A. Burd

Annual Member Auction

Here are the lots known to us by October 24, 2006. The auction will be held near the start of the meeting, after a short time for lot examination; consignments are accepted until the auction starts.

Consignment from Donald G. Tritt (former CCC Member):

  1. American Numismatic Association lapel pin (early design) “Made by J. H. Ripstra” on back of pin.
  2. Lincoln plaque by J.H. Ripstra, bronze, 31mm x 42mm. #150 on reverse, given to Donald G. Tritt by JHR.
  3. Two Lincoln medals, by J. H. Ripstra, aluminum, 31mm x 42mm. Made for Central States Numismatic Society. One is silver in color and one gold in color.
  4. Hawthorne Men’s Club (Western Electric Company). One watch fob and one lapel pin. From the J.H. Ripstra Sale February 13-15, 1975.
  5. Electrotype of a medal, 72mm, by Daniel Cochin (Swiss) (mid 1700s). Lot #1842 of the JHR sale.
  6. Electrotypes of various coins and medals. American Institute, NY; One Cent; Washington Bicentennial; Roman theme; Ancient Head; Henry Clay; Woman in high relief. 7 pieces total. From the JHR Sale.
  7. Uniface medal with fruit and mountain scene, 18mm x 86mm. Appears to be side panel for a pocket knife. From the JHR Sale.
  8. Medal depicting athlete throwing ball with words Wright & Ditson-Victor Co. Trophy around outer portion, 40mm, (trial strike?), # 1054 on reverse. Also similar medal with baseball player, 35mm. 2 pieces total. From the JHR Sale.
  9. Four miscellaneous trial strike medals depicting various themes. Lucky Dog Club; K of C Oom Pah; Spartan Club; Head of Indian in high relief. From the JHR Sale.
  10. Presentation plaquette for “Distinguished Service in Saving Life” by Harley L. Clarke, President Utilities Power & Light Corporation. From the JHR Sale.
  11. Military themed medal, brass, 29mm x 36mm. From the JHR Sale.
  12. Good Luck Medal, 23mm x 43mm; also Gargoyle pendant from University of Michigan, 19mm x 21mm; also Enameled pin showing nurse and soldier with “To help and to heal Autocracy’s doom to seal” around outer border. 3 pieces total from the JHR Sale.
  13. Baseball player pendant, brass, 25mm; also Mercer H.S. Assoc 1916 pendant, brass, depicting runner, 28mm.
  14. Portrayal of three figures, 16mm; Discus thrower, 15mm x 18mm; Man with 2 children — Mooseheart, 12mm x 14mm. 3 pieces total. From the JHR Sale.
  15. Classic Greek female watch FOB, 20mm x 46mm. From the JHR Sale.
  16. Token with Washington & Lincoln facing each other, outer border is “International Philatelic Exhibition, New York 1926”. Reverse “Guttag Bros. / Coins / send for selling list / New York”. Brass, 30mm. From the JHR Sale.
  17. Plaquette with bust of Thomas Jefferson. “1743 — 1826” at top with “Thos. Jefferson” at base. Uniface. 39mm x 54mm. From the JHR Sale.
  18. Target Shooting Medal; trial strike; 36mm. #3219 on reverse. From the JHR Sale.
  19. “Bob Colflesh for Governor” pin, 18mm; also enameled pin “CC of A / No accident” award, 16mm; also enameled pin, Masonic, 20mm; also enameled pin “Amos / We never sleep”, 11mm. 4 pieces total. From the JHR Sale.
  20. Columbus Mutual Life Insurance Company medal, holed, 31mm; also aluminum token “A / ACC”, 20mm; also pendant “Mammoth Cave Kentucky” on reverse “I Bring Good Luck”, 32mm. 3 pieces total. From the JHR Sale.
  21. Oak Park Coin Club One Hundredth Meeting Medal dated May 8, 1959
  22. Same as #21 above.

Consignment from Chet Poderski Estate:

  1. “Chicago Coin Club Bullitin” (sic) May 1920, Vol 1 No. 4. W. F. Dunham, Editor. Ink has faded but a great early piece from the CCC.
  2. November 1935 Chicago Coin Club unofficial bulletin issued by Lee F. Hewitt discussing the results of the 200th meeting and announcing the 201st meeting.
  3. Same as #24 above.
  4. 1936 Chicago Coin Club Bulletins Volume 1 No. 1 thru Volume 1 No. 4 complete for the year as issued.
  5. Same as #26 above. No. 1 has a tear at the top. #2, 3, and 4 are soiled.
  6. Chicago Coin Club Bulletins March 1937 Volume II No. 1 thru March 1942 Volume VII No. 1. Complete set consisting of 20 issues. Most issues are in fine to very fine condition.
  7. Chicago Coin Club Bulletins June 1937 thru August 1940. Various issues — not complete. Consists of 8 issues generally in fine to very fine condition.
  8. Chicago Coin Club Bulletin Annual Number 1949. Volume XI.
  9. Chicago Coin Club By-Laws booklet dated February 14th 1919 however believed to have been issued later in 1919.
  10. Membership List and By-Laws of the Chicago Coin Club September 1935.
  11. Pamphlet on the Annual Banquet and Exhibit Chicago Coin Club May 1937. Pamphlet on the Annual Banquet and Exhibit Chicago Coin Club May 1938. Pamphlet on the Chicago Coin Club Fall Festival October 1961.
  12. Chicago Coin Club early “Song Sheet” circ 1935. Each verse refers to a club member starting with President Henri Ripstra.
  13. An original Numismatic Scrapbook, January 1935 Volume 1 No. 1. Also a reprint of No. 1 reproduced for the 37th Anniversary CSNS Convention Banquet on May 1, 1976 at the Sheraton-Chicago Hotel.
  14. Same as #35 above.
  15. Numismatic Scrapbook, February 1936, Volume II No. 1.
  16. Numismatic Scrapbook. Various issues from February 1937 thru November 1945. 10 issues total.
  17. A set of brass tokens depicting the Presidents of the US from Washington thru Franklin D. Roosevelt. In a Book type box marked on spine “A Coin History of our Presidents” and “U.S.A. Liberty Edition”.
  18. Plaque of the U. S. Capital with flag flying above. Reverse states “Made from money redeemed and destroyed by U. S. Treasury” / “National Currency Souvenir” / “Amount Estimated $3,000” / “Washington, D.C.”
  19. Display with silver granules from the U.S. Treasury obtained thru redemption of a silver certificate 1967 — 1968. Also includes a $1.00 Silver Certificate.
  20. Souvenir Transit Token Good For One Ride on Official ANA Tour at the 108th Anniversary Convention in Chicago in 1999. 8 pieces total. You are bidding on 1 piece only!!
  21. (Proceeds to be donated to the Chicago Coin Club in memory of Chet Poderski.) Ceramic Medallion commissioned by Mark Wieclaw to commemorate the 1000th meeting of the Chicago Coin Club April 6, 2002. Only 100 made and given to attendees. To my knowledge this is the first one to appear in auction in the U.S. or abroad.

Consigned by member Casey Fadze:

  1. Official ANA Grading Standards for US Coins, 5th Edition, 1996.
  2. Coin World Almanac, Millennium Edition, 7th Edition 2000.
  3. The Complete Guide to Barber Quarters, 2nd Edition, 1994 by David Lawrence.
  4. Collectible American Coins, 1991 by Kenneth E. Bressett.

Our 1067th Meeting

Date:November 14, 2007
Time:7:00 PM
Location:Downtown Chicago
At the Chicago Bar Association, 321 S. Plymouth Court, 3rd floor meeting room. Plymouth Court is located between State and Dearborn Streets; Plymouth is a short strret, going south from Jackson. Please remember the security measures at our meeting building: everyone must show their photo-ID and register at the guard’s desk. To the immediate south of the CBA building is the Plymouth Restaurant with standard sandwiches, burgers and salads for members who want to meet for dinner.
Member Auction:

Although the deadline for listing lots in the Chatter is past, you can still bring your lots with you to the November meeting. In the past few years, club related material (and Chicago area numismatic items) have realized the best results. Please consider using the club auction to dispose of the numismatic items you no longer need.

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.

Please find elsewhere in this issue of the Chatter a listing of all auction lots that were known to us by Tuesday, October 30.

Important Dates

November 14 CCC Meeting - Club Auction - no featured speaker
December 12 CCC Meeting - Annual Banquet - Featured Speaker - to be announced

Birthday and Year Joined

December 1 Paul Robertz 2006
December 6 Allen H. Meyer 1990
December 7 Brian C. Stubbs 1980
December 10 Mike Gasvoda 1995
December 16 Michael Schmidt 2000
December 19 William Noble 1980
December 26 Kevin J. Blocker 2000
December 29 Nick Weiss 1996
December 30 Robert Graves 2006
December 31 Phillip J. Carrigan 1989

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
William Burd- Archivist
Directors:Eugene Freeman
Elliot Krieter
Carl Wolf
Mark Wieclaw
Other positions held are:
Carl Wolf- Secretary
Steve Zitowsky- Treasurer
Paul Hybert- Chatter Editor

Contacting Your Editor / Chatter Delivery Option

The print version of the Chatter is simply a printout of the Chatter web page, with a little cutting and pasting to fill out each print page. The web page is available before the Chatter is mailed.
If you would like to receive an email link to the latest issue instead of a mailed print copy send an email to You can resume receiving a mailed print copy at any time, just by sending another email.