Chatter


Archive available at http://www.ChicagoCoinClub.org/
Volume 57 No. 6 June 2011


2 Months until ANA in Chicago

The Exhibits Rules and Applications for the August convention are on the ANA web site, at http://worldsfairofmoney.com/index.php?id=255. A recent development is the change in location for the exhibit Area — it will be larger than first shown! (It also will be in a different location in the bourse hall than originally shown.)

Send your completed Application to the ANA by the deadline of July 20.

Although the Chicago Coin Club has requested a room for a meeting during the ANA convention, we have not heard the assigned date and time yet. That will be in addition to our regular downtown meeting on the second Wednesday of the month.


Minutes of the 1109th Meeting

The 1109th meeting of the Chicago Coin Club was held May 11, 2011 in the Chicago Bar Association Building, 321 S. Plymouth Court, Downtown Chicago. President Jeffrey Rosinia called the meeting to order at 6:45 PM with an attendance of 15 members and 1 guest, Scott McGowan.

A motion was passed to approve the April Minutes as published in the Chatter. Treasurer Steve Zitowsky was absent but submitted a report showing April income of $3,459.97, expenses $381.13 and total assets of $19,313.07 held in Life Membership $1,910.00 and member equity $17,403.07. An income entry of $3050.97 was clarified as arriving from the ANA to offset local committee expenses. A motion was passed to approve the report.

Mark Wieclaw reported the sale of two CICF souvenir sheets and submitted $10.00 cash. He also submitted $100 in cash on behalf of member Kevin Dailey who asked for it to apply to the Club’s ANA Convention expense. Mark also reported that ANA recently named Club member Harlan J. Berk the “2011 Numismatist of the Year.”

Scott McGowan’s membership application received first reading. Six applications received second reading: Cynthia Tibbs, John A. Schroeder, William G. Rau, James Davis, Walter Ostromecki, and Karen Jach. A motion was passed to accept them into membership. It was announced that member Donald Dool submitted his resignation.

President Rosinia summarized decisions made at the recent meeting of the Board of Directors, including Marc Stackler’s work with a Club Facebook page, Carl Wolf ordering a podium banner. Elliott Krieter reported on his search for a replacement bulb for the Club’s document-viewer. Elliott also will purchase an additional bulb for the Club’s projector.

President Rosinia and Carl Wolf reported a recommendation by the Board for the Club to create two special medals for the upcoming ANA Convention. Both medals would use the Standing Lincoln obverse on the current speaker’s medal. One medal would honor the speakers at the Numismatic Theatre. The second medal would commemorate the convention and be offered for sale at the Club table. Following several questions and alternative suggestions, the membership approved the expense of $3,500.00 to create 50 antique bronze NT medals with neck ribbons and 250 antique copper medals commemorating the convention.

Robert Leonard, General Chairman of the ANA Convention, reminded committee members of the upcoming May 18th meeting at 6 PM in the offices of Harlan J. Berk, 77 W. Washington, Suite 1320. Eugene Freeman delivered the featured program Encased Postage: Stamps as Money. Following a question and answer period, Second V.P. Elliott Krieter presented Gene with an engraved CCC speaker’s medal and an ANA educational certificate. It was announced that the June 8th program will be Coin Photography Using Inexpensive Equipment.

Elliott Krieter introduced the eight exhibitors for the evening. RICHARD LIPMAN: 4 U.S. currency errors; ROBERT FEILER: a George Washington Indian Peace Medal (replica?) and 13 modern encased postage stamps; STEVE AMBOS: 11 different Chinese silver dimes; MARK WIECLAW: 2 souvenir cards from Chicago’s 1991 ANA Convention, tetradrachm of Alexander I and Philip II; ROBERT LEONARD: book A 16th Century Coin Hoard from Bulgaria, and 3 gold and 3 silver coins of the type found in the hoard; NOEL M. RODRIGUEZ: 9 different U.S. banknotes; ROBERT WEINSTEIN: 4 ancient Asian coins; and Jeffrey Rosinia: copper rounds and a 1961 South African proof set.

The meeting was adjourned at 8:46 PM.

Respectfully Submitted,
Carl Wolf, Secretary


Speaker’s Wor[l]d
How German Electors Broke with the Holy Roman Empire as seen through 16th Century Coins & Medals of the Reformation

presented by Wendell Wolka
to our April 30, 2011 meeting

This was Wendell’s first presentation on round things — all of his previous talks to numismatic groups had been on rectangular things (paper money). The first slide introduced us to the Reformation protagonists to be covered in this talk: Martin Luther, Pope Leo X, Charles V of the Holy Roman Empire, Fredrich the Wise, and Philipp Melanchthon. The Holy Roman Empire extended from northern Italy to the Baltic, west of France all the way to the Ottoman Empire; it consisted of 300 entities, some just small cities, but, as the saying goes, was neither Holy, nor Roman, nor an Empire.

Born in 1483 in Eisleben, Saxony, Martin Luther attended schools in preparation for a career in law. Surviving a close encounter with lightning in 1505 led Luther to become an Augustinian monk in that same year. He taught theology at the University of Wittenburg in 1508, and was awarded the Doctor of Theology degree in 1512. The flashpoint came on Octobr 31, 1517 when Luther submitted his “95 Theses” expressing concerns about church practices. His intent was to reform policies of the church, and his supporters used a new technology, the printing press, to spread the word. By 1519, students arrived in Wittenburg to hear Luther speak. As Wendell told of the actions by various German rulers, he also showed representative pieces issued either by these rulers or on later anniversaries. Although some early pieces had a religious message, some later pieces, especially those from 1917, were partly political.

Pope Loe X initially dismissed this as merely a quarrel among monks, but soon, via the Augustinian order, ordered Luther’s silence — Luther persisted. Negotiations during 1519 and 1520 went nowhere, so Leo X excommunicated Luther in 1521, and asked Charles V to act against this heresy. A legislative council (Diet) met at Worms for much of of the first half of 1521, and when Luther refused to recant his views, Charles V issued the Edict of Worms which officially placed all resources of the Holy roman Empire against Luther. Luther died in 1546, and Charles V was too distracted (until 1547) by battles against the Turks, French, and other external issues, so internal differences were somewhat left to themselves.

Albert, Duke of Prussia, converted in 1522, and made it the state religion in 1525 — a shown 1532 silver groschen includes a legend that translates to, “The just shall live by faith.” Other princes also converted over time. After the 1530 Diet of Augsburg saw representatives of German rulers and Free States present the basic tenets of Lutheranism in the Augsburg Confession, the imperial and papal representatives refuted them — the Germans stood their ground with their response known as the Apology of the Augsburg Confession. Also at that Diet, led by the Elector of Saxony and the Landgrave of Hesse, some German states and cities formed the Schmalkaldic League to provide military support in case of attack on religious grounds — they fielded 10,000 infantry and 2,000 cavalry.

Once Charles V settled his external wars in 1547, he turned his attention to the Protestants and decisively defeated them, whereupon Protestants agreed to terms of the Augsburg Interim. Continued Protestant resistance led, in 1555, to the Peace of Augsburg which officially recognized Lutheranism within the Holy Roman Empire — the local ruler decided upon the official religion in his domain, and the locals were faced with an adopt-or-move decision. That solution left out the Calvinists, which led to the Thirty Years War (1618-1648) that destroyed much of Central Europe, but that story is for another day.

The paricipants issued coins and medals to express their feelings — many pieces are found holed, attesting to their popularity. Use the years mentioned above as a hint when examining a piece new to you as many pieces were issued on the various centennials of those events. The oddest shown pieces must have been the satirical “flippers;” when viewed one way, you see the bust of one of the important players; but when rotated 180 degrees, you see the image of a jester or a fool.


Speaker’s Wor[l]d
Encased Postage: Stamps as Money

by Eugene Freeman
presented to our May 11, 2011 meeting

To have encased postage stamps, you must first have postage stamps. The first prepaid adhesive postage stamp was the “Penny Black” issued by Great Britain in 1840. The USA first issued such stamps in 1847, and by 1860 about 85 countries or entities had issued stamps.

In the USA, the Civil War began in 1861. People soon began hoarding coins, and the only coins left in circulation were the Indian cents and the three cent silvers. Then those also disappeared. At that time, the lowest denomination of U.S. currency was the 5 dollar bill, and this caused problems in a society where one cent bought a newspaper, the average salary was $12 to $15 per week, and a private in the army earned about $13 per month.

Individuals began unofficially addressing the problem in several ways, including:

In July 1862, Congress passed a law permitting postage stamps to be used to pay debts to the government of less than $5. The demand for postage stamps mushroomed and severely taxed the Postal System. In his report for the September 1862 quarter, the Postmaster General indicated that $104 million of stamps had been issued to postmasters, but there were calls for about $200 million, which would be the normal amount for an entire year. The difference was attributed to the demand for stamps to be used as change.

But there were problems with using postage stamps. They were thin and did not stand up to extensive handling, and the glue encouraged them to stick to hands, or to whatever they came into contact. In some cities, people started passing stamps in small envelopes, marked with the total value of the stamps enclosed, but this often meant that the stamps had to be removed from the envelope and the count verified. (Also, some people had a tendency to include cancelled stamps in the envelope!)

In August 1862, John Gault patented a process to manufacture an encased postage stamp, using button making equipment. The frame was made of brass, with a piece of cardboard and a brass backing behind a postage stamp. Mica covered the stamp to protect it, and the edges of the brass frame were bent over the brass backing. The brass backing could be inscribed to advertise a specific business.

The earliest versions were silvered, to make them look more like coins. The silvering process was expensive, and the silvering wore off easily, so this process was stopped.

Gault made money on his encased postage in two ways:

  1. he sold uninscribed items to businesses that needed small change for 20% above the face value of the stamps; or
  2. he customized the brass case for companies for 2 cents above the face value of each stamp.

The stamps used were from the 1861 series, and were of eight denominations ranging from 1 cent to 90 cents.

Dr. J. C. Ayer quickly recognized the value of this advertising medium, and he became Gault’s largest customer. He purchased between 25 and 30% of Gault’s total output, or about 200,000 encased stamps. Ayer was interested in getting the highest market penetration for his money, so it is estimated that 50% of his encased postage were of the 3 cents denomination, 25% were of the 1 cent denomination, 11% were 10 cent denomination, and 8% were 5 cent denomination. Only about 6% were of the other 4 denominations, and less than 60 of that group are known today.

In December 1862, the Post Office announced the one-time redemption of stamps that showed evidence of being used for currency and unfit for use as postage.

To fill this vacuum, the Government had begun issuing currency in denominations of 1 and 2 dollars, and Postage Stamp Currency in denominations of 5 cents to 50 cents; and businesses were issuing Civil War Tokens (which would later be outlawed).

The Great Depression and the financial chaos in Europe after World War I set the stage for the next issues of encased postage. Numerous businesses, cities, and Chambers of Commerce issued tokens and paper money, particularly in France and Germany during this period, and this included some examples of encased postage. French encased postage generally is in an aluminum case (such as the example from the Indo-China Bank of Noumea, New Caledonia). German encased postage takes two general forms — one has a metal case (such as the Frankfurt issue from Merz), the other is of plastic (such as the Dusseldorf issue for Leo Kropp).

The Spanish Civil War was the next setting for stamps used as money, although the term “encased” would not apply here. Stamps were merely stuck to a cardboard disk with the royal coat of arms on the reverse. I have been unable to determine the issuers for the Spanish items.

Bibliography:

  1. Ayer’s Encased Postage (www.choyt48.home.comcast.net)
  2. Peter Menzel’s Deutsche Notmunzen und Sonstige Geldersatzmarken 1840-1990 (Munzhandel + Verlag B. Strothotte, 1993)
  3. Krause Minkus Standard Catalog of U. S. Stamps, 3rd edition (Krause, 1999)
  4. Gadoury & Cousinie’s Monnaies Coloniales Francaises 1670-1988, (Gadoury, 1988)
  5. The Penny Black (www.imagesoftheworld.org/stamps)

Current Advertisers

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Show and Tell

Items shown at our May 11, 2011 meeting.

  1. Richard Lipman showed 4 U.S. currency errors:
  2. Robert Feiler showed:
  3. Steve Ambos showed 11 different Chinese silver dimes including 4 empire and 7 various provincial types.
  4. Mark Wieclaw showed:
  5. Robert Leonard showed:
  6. Noel M. Rodriguez showed:
  7. Robert Weinstein showed:
  8. Jeffrey Rosinia showed:

Club Members Receive Awards for Exhibits at the 2011 Central States Numismatic Society Convention

Nancy Wilson, Third Place, U.S. Paper Money & People’s Choice Award, “Santa Claus On Banknotes, Stock Certificates and Second Die Proof Vignettes.” Nancy’s exhibit contained a complete type set of all six types of Santa Claus notes, stock certificates, and a second die proof vignettes.

Dan Freeland, Second Place, U.S. Paper Money, “Selected Michigan Nationals from the Second National Bank of Saginaw.” Dan’s exhibit contained 13 National Banknotes from the Saginaw bank.

Bruce Bartelt, Third Place, Foreign Coins Prior to 1700 AD, “The Roman Denarius: Origins and Evolution.” This exhibit contained a complete set of Roman coins introduced in the reform that created the denarius, and placed in a broad historical perspective, tracing its roots in earlier coinages and outlining the subsequent history of the denarius through Roman times and later.

Donald Dool, Third Place, Foreign Coins After 1700 AD, “Dated Copper Siege Coins after 1700.” Don’s exhibit contained siege coins struck out of the necessity of paying troops while under siege. Although struck in many different metals and even paper, the exhibit collection only showed copper pieces.


Ninth Meeting of the ANA 2011 Convention Host Committee

May 18, 2011

Meeting was held in the offices of Harlan J. Berk in Chicago. Attending were General Chairman Bob Leonard, Assistant General Chairman Mark Wieclaw, and Chairmen Carl Wolf, Richard Lipman, Jeff Rosinia, Eugene Freeman, Harlan Berk, David Simpson, Bill Burd, and guest LuAnne Freeman, who is assisting Carl with favors for the Friendship Luncheon.

The meeting began at 5:58 pm. Mr. Leonard and committee members expressed their thanks to Mr. Berk for the meeting room, supper, and parking vouchers.

Noncompetitive Exhibits: Mr. Berk reported that the Gobrecht Dollars shown would not be from the ANS (though they have a finer collection), but from private collector Bob R. Simpson instead. Just two World’s Columbian Exposition medals from the Field Museum will be displayed this year, to be chosen by Mr. Berk. There was an issue with insurance of the Carl Subak Collection of multiple talers, but that has been resolved, with the ANA agreeing to provide $50,000 of insurance and Mr. Subak selecting 14 examples from his outstanding collection. Mr. Berk will write the captions for these coins.

Patrons: Mr. Berk reported that Patron donations had already reached $25,100. (After the meeting Mr. Leonard collected another $200 in Patron donations from the Milwaukee Numismatic Society.) The letter he will sign to all past patrons and ANA board members has been redone a couple of times (over language regarding which coins would be conserved, at the $5,000 level) and is about to be released. He was optimistic about donation prospects. The Committee congratulated Mr. Berk for being named the Numismatist of the Year.

Exhibits: In Mr. Hybert’s absence, Mr. Leonard noted that the exhibit applications are now up on the WFM website. The deadline has been pushed back into July, and exhibitors are permitted to enter up to four exhibits, including two in the same category.

Friendship Luncheon: Mr. Wolf reported that he had contacted Women in Numismatics, but had obtained little information from them. He has attractive red and black cardboard boxes left over from previous Club medal projects, and proposed that luncheon favors be put in them and a stack tied up with ribbon, instead of using a miniature shopping bag with tissue to hold the favors. Samples were shown to the Committee and were well received. The Club voted to donate remaining 800th meeting medals for use as favors, he reported. He also showed a sample digital piggybank (that records the amount saved), which could be used for centerpieces. Finally, the club owns a supply of gold-flecked card that could be used to print souvenir menus. Mr. Wolf also stressed the need for readable nametags. He will work with LuAnne Freeman to prepare a final recommendation for luncheon favors.

One problem has arisen: the banquet has been moved to Friday, the same day as the Friendship Luncheon, and if the luncheon day does not change, attendees would be paying $125 that day for lunch and dinner, even at the discounted rate. Mr. Leonard recommended that no favors be ordered until early July, after the expiration of the discount, to gage attendance.

In connection with this, the convention schedule was discussed. The bourse will open at 9:00 a.m. Tuesday morning, August 16, preceded by the ribbon-cutting ceremony. The Kick-Off Event at the Shedd Aquarium is that same evening, 6:00 to 10:30 pm (includes dinner). The Field Museum tour is Wednesday, 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., the Friendship Luncheon and Awards Banquet are both on Friday (as of now), and the Scout Workshop is Saturday.

Numismatic Theater speaker’s medals have been ordered (50, the minimum number, which is ample). (Thank you, Chicago Coin Club!) They resemble the Club’s current Featured Speaker medal, but have a loop and ribbon for wearing. This is the biggest improvement in Numismatic Theatre recognition ever, and may help in recruiting speakers when they realize how attractive and rare they are.

Mr. Simpson reported that the second issue of the Convention Newsletter would be out by Sunday. It is now in the hands of Jay Beeton of the ANA for layout.

Volunteer Requirements: Mr. Leonard reported on his analysis of volunteer staffing requirements for the convention and on his conversation with Kim Kiick on how to bridge the gap between the ANA’s request and our likely ability to meet it. Mr. Wolf, Chicago Volunteers Manager, said he had a firm 70 volunteers signed up, plus 5 for Saturday only. In addition, two Committee members not on his list (Mr. Freeman and Mr. Wieclaw) agreed to volunteer. Following the meeting, Mr. Leonard recruited another volunteer at the Milwaukee Numismatic Society meeting, and we are expecting to receive multiple names from ILNA.

Not counting any from ILNA, then, we have 78 volunteers, though with more to come. This is a better than 50% improvement on the Boston convention, but is well short of the ANA’s stated needs. In Mr. Leonard’s opinion, we should aim for at least 100 volunteers (including Saturday only, because extra volunteers will be needed for the Kids Zone Saturday). We will probably need to make repeat visits to coin clubs, particularly now that we know about the Kids Zone requirements. Even so, we/ANA staff will most likely have to recruit ANA Governors to make up the shortfall.

Mr. Wolf stated that advising potential volunteers that (1) no heavy lifting [no lifting at all?], and (2) no knowledge of Chicago will be required, to help boost volunteering. Mr. Leonard mentioned that the new Kids Zone was also a powerful incentive to volunteer. Picking up parking for volunteers should help too.

ANA Ambassadors Committee: Chairman Bob Weinstein did not attend, because he planned to visit the meeting of the Central Illinois Numismatic Association in Springfield (unfortunately, heavy traffic prevented this, and he will go next month).

Branding Committee: Mr. Burd reported that the ANA has finally obtained a Sponsor for shirts — him. The Chicago Coin Company will work with Mr. Wolf on this project, including quantity and sizes. Turquoise was selected as the color. The Branding Committee will propose a recommendation on who would receive complimentary shirts. (National Volunteers are excluded, since they have their own shirts.)

Medal Committee: Mr. Leonard reported that the ANA has ordered the medals. Mr. Simpson showed sample drawings of two of the designs, based on the four stars in the Chicago flag, which was one of the ideas suggested by the Medal Committee.

Numismatic Theatre Committee: Wendell Wolka has submitted a proposal for “Free Banking — The Indiana, Illinois, and Ohio Experience.” The second convention newsletter will have an appeal for more speakers.

There was no report from the Outreach/Local Transportation Committee. Mr. Leonard announced his intention to visit coin clubs in Wisconsin, particularly the Milwaukee Numismatic Society that week. Mr. Wolf is to contact new Chicago Coin Club member Noel Rodriguez, who is president of the Calumet Coin Club, to try to obtain volunteers from Indiana.

Pages: Only two pages have signed up so far, but Mr. Rosinia said that he expected that most would sign up at the last minute, if the 1999 convention were any guide. He is requesting that the ANA send out a tickler (email to coin dealers) on Page volunteers closer to the convention. One problem is that the Rosemont location is difficult for Pages logistically; everyone has to be driven there and dropped off.

Scout Workshops: Mr. Freeman stated that the Scout workshops will be held on Saturday from 12:00-2:00, with the possibility of a second workshop from 3:00-5:00 if needed. He had a conference call with the other three Coin Collecting Merit Badge counselors and the Girl Scout counselors and corrected errors in the promotional material. He showed sample copies of these flyers for both Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts. All Scouts in uniform and their parents will receive free admission to the convention, and in addition, those completing the merit badge/patch workshop will receive a free six-month membership in the ANA. Also, each participant will receive a free Red Book and free ancient coin. Mr. Freeman said that he was sent 100 color copies of the Scout flyers (Boy and Girl) but may need 500 more, and was told to have a reasonable number printed using the Committee’s budget.

Assistant General Chairman: Mr. Wieclaw volunteered to investigate the possibility of discounted parking at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare, and report later.

Post-Convention Report: Mr. Leonard reminded all Committee chairmen that he will be issuing a post-convention report, as required by the ANA, and asked that each Chairman plan to take notes so that they can complete their section of the report shortly after the convention.

The next meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, June 15 at 6:00, beginning with dinner at Mr. Berk’s office, 77 W. Washington St., Chicago.

Meeting adjourned at 7:50.

Respectfully submitted,
David Simpson


Our 1110th Meeting

Date:June 8, 2011
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. Nearby parking: South Loop Self Parking Ramp at Van Buren & Federal Streets; that is two short blocks west of our meeting site. Note: Their typical rate of $29 is reduced to $6 if you eat at the Plymouth Restaurant, 327 S. Plymouth Court (next to our meeting site at the CBA), show them your parking ticket, and ask the restaurant for a parking voucher. The restaurant offers standard sandwiches, burgers, and salads for members who want to meet for dinner.
Featured speaker:to be announced


Important Dates

June 8 CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - to be announced
July 13 CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - to be announced

Chatter Matter

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

http://www.ChicagoCoinClub.org/

Club Officers

Jeffrey Rosinia- President
Lyle Daly- First Vice President
Elliott Krieter- Second Vice President
William Burd- Archivist
Directors:Robert Feiler
Eugene Freeman
Marc Stackler
Carl Wolf
Other positions held are:
Carl Wolf- Secretary
Steve Zitowsky- Treasurer
Paul Hybert- Chatter Editor

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