|Volume 64 No. 10||October 2018|
It is that time of year again. Although your 2018 dues are good through December, 2018, please pay your 2019 dues before the start of 2019.
Check the outside of your printed Chatter. A slip of yellow paper stapled outside the cover indicates that, according to our records, you have not paid your dues for 2019. Please mail the dues to the address on that slip, or bring them to our next meeting. For members who are notified by email when a new Chatter issue is available, the email stated if you have not paid your dues for 2019.
The club auction is scheduled for 7PM, near the start of the regular November club meeting. In the past few years, club related material (and Chicago area numismatic items) have had the best results. Some printed material also has shown good results. Please consider using the club auction to dispose of the numismatic items you no longer need.
This auction is shaping up to be one of our better ones. We have a number of popular items already consigned, but we have space for a few more items. Please contact Bill Burd at Chicago Coin Company to discuss what material would complement the existing lots.
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.
The November Chatter will contain a list of all auction lots that are known to us by Tuesday, October 23. You can either e-mail your list to Paul Hybert by Tuesday, October 23 if you plan to bring your lots with you to the November meeting; or you can ship your items to Bill Burd by Tuesday, October 23.
Chicago Coin Company
6455 W. Archer Ave.
Chicago, IL 60638
If you have questions, Bill can be reached at 773-586-7666.
The 1196th meeting of the Chicago Coin Club was held Wednesday, September 12, 2018 at the Chicago Bar Association Building, 321 S. Plymouth Court, Downtown Chicago. First Vice President Marc Stackler called the meeting to order at 6:45 PM with attendance of 22 members and 2 guests: Jennifer Carlson and Olin Flores.
The Minutes of August meeting were approved as published in the Chatter with a correction by Bill Burd that his exhibit was a certificate from the Club archives, but the medals were from his collection. In the absence of Treasurer Steve Zitowsky, the Secretary delivered the Treasurer’s Report showing August revenue of $695.00 and expenses of $400.05. A motion was passed approving the report.
Membership applications of Jennifer Carlson and Olin Flores received first time reading.
The Secretary announced Club members would fill nearly 50 cases of education exhibits at the Illinois Numismatic Association Sept 20-22 convention in St. Charles. Volunteer application forms for the 2019 Chicago ANA Convention were distributed.
Marc introduced the evening’s featured speaker, William Burd, who gave a program Chinese Chopmarks on World Coins. Following a question and answer period, Marc presented Bill with an ANA Educational Certificate and an engraved Club speaker’s medal suspended on a neck ribbon.
Second VP John Riley announced the following exhibitors. MARK WIECLAW: two fun items, and an ancient code. DEVEN KANE: two ancient coins and three coins from the 19th and 20th centuries. ROBERT LEONARD: three received awards and three countermarked coins. LYLE DALY: two pieces of guerrilla money, and a Celtic coin. WILLIAM BURD: 19th century U.S. currency with a rubber stamped Chinese character chop. ROBERT WEINSTEIN: three silver coins from the Indo-Greek and Indo-Scythian periods. DALE LUKANICH: four French bank notes. ROBERT FEILER: thalers from various centuries, either with stamped markings or formed into objects. JIM DAVIS: two medals showing Donald Trump. JOHN KENT: mini-albums used to educate about ancient coins.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:42 PM.
Carl F. Wolf, Secretary
by Bill Burd,
presented to our September 12, 2018 meeting.
China had a great appetite for silver starting well before the 15th century. In the early 14th century silver had become the preferred medium of exchange in commercial transactions in China. This was briefly interrupted in the late 14th century by the Ming Dynasty’s ban on the use of silver and gold in trade in an effort to save it’s ailing paper currency. But by the early 15th century currency no longer served as a viable instrument of exchange and merchants were again using silver. By the mid 15th century the output of the silver mines in southern China dropped off sharply. Another factor that created additional need for silver was the lack of production of official copper coins from the 1430s until 1500, causing a shortage. Private merchants began forging new copper coins of inferior quality. They were used alongside official coinage but at a different rate. As the new coins became more prevalent, people were reluctant to hold on to them as a means of maintaining their assets. They began to hold silver instead. An additional need for silver was created in the early 16th century when the single whip tax system was started. This was in full operation throughout China by 1580. This meant all land taxes had to be paid in silver. Prior to this there were complex tax codes and payments were made with rice, wheat, silk, etc.
During the 16th and 17th centuries, this need for silver was filled by European traders who realized the difference between the price of silver in China and the international market, measured in gold, would realize them a handsome profit. Gold was one of China’s major exports from 1550 to 1750.
Besides trading silver for gold with China, the European merchants were trading for other commodities and with other countries in Asia including India, Indonesia, and the Philippines. This intercontinental trade was wholly driven by the Europeans. They were making a profit trading silver to China for their gold, then selling the gold in Europe and buying more silver to trade again with China. They also brought back commodities that were in demand in Europe. Besides gold, other commodities leaving Asia for Europe were silk, pepper, fine spices, and tea. By 1680 almost 2 million pounds of pepper was imported into Europe annually. Imports of tea reached 4.2 million pounds annually by 1800. The discovery of the route around the Cape of Good Hope in 1497 by Portugal helped facilitate the increase in trade with Asia. During the next 300 years, trade of Asian commodities changed repeatedly by product and from regions within Asia, but overall trade maintained a steady growth. By 1800 approximately 50,000 tons of product was brought back to Europe via the Cape.
The silver being traded to China was originally from the mines in Europe from about 1470 to 1550, reaching a million and half ounces annually. In 1521 Spain conquered present day Mexico and shortly after discovered silver and opened mints in Mexico, Peru, and Bolivia. Initially the silver flowed to Spain then on to Asia. Starting in 1570, the Manila Galleons were transporting massive amounts of silver from Acapulco to Manila and traded with merchants from mainland China. In 1540 Japan discovered large silver deposits in their country and began trading for Chinese silk and other commodities.
So why Chops? Certainly the silver entering China in the 1500s and 1600s was always tested for purity. Most of the silver at that time was in the form of European bars and Spanish cobs, most of which was melted down once it arrived in China and made into Chinese bars called sycee. Sycee were produced by silver firms and were tested, verified, and stamped by a Public Assayer. Most commercial trading and tax payments were with sycee until well into the 1700s. We know cobs were being chopped through several hoards found in China in the 1900s. The use of coinage rather than melting down into bars started with the Spanish Pillar dollar first minted in 1732. The merchants not only tested for silver via chops, they were guaranteeing the coin by placing their unique mark on it. The reason for so many different chop marks by the mid to late 1800s is because of the many merchants and banks involved with trade. As an example, in the port city of Tienjin there were 100 banks after the treaty of Tienjin in 1858, and within 10 years grew to 300 banks. Traders, merchants, money changers, and bankers had punches made with their unique mark to test the coins. These money handlers were referred to as shroffs.
Handbooks were created to assist the shroffs in identifying the various world coins entering China. They included descriptions of the coins and details such as styles of mint marks and dates. They also had instructional books on how counterfeits were made.
Chops on coins are either small or large. They can be Chinese characters, numbers, Latin letters, or symbols such as flowers, sun, etc. The small chops were used prior to 1810 when larger chops began to be used. Northern China continued using small chops after southern China switched to large. Some traders and banks were slow to switch over regardless of their location. Many coins dated after 1810 have small chops. As coins moved from the port cities into the interior, many of the smaller companies probably continued with their old practices. After 1910 small chops were again used because they were less invasive.
Ink chops were introduced in the late 1800s. There was no damage to the coin so they were more acceptable in the market place and damaged coins were beginning to be discounted by the banks. The survival rate for these chops is low for obvious reasons.
All chops are either incuse or relief chops, with 90% incuse.
Starting with the Spanish cobs in the late 1500s until 300 years later, the only coins consistently used for trade with China were the coins being minted in South and Central America. Not until 1866 did other countries begin to strike coins for trade with China. Not including cobs, there are over 1500 different dates and mint marks of Mexican coinage that could have gone to China and received chops. Another 143 for Peru and 117 for Bolivia. It is not possible to complete a date and mintmark set in one’s lifetime.
Mexico supplied coins to China longer than any other country. Although we hear a lot about the U.S. trade dollar and the Japanese yen they were traded for, a very short time compared to the 173 years by Mexico, and that is not including 200 years of the cobs. The earliest coins were the Spanish cobs which were struck for 200 years. Then the pillar dollar, first struck in 1732 and continued for 40 years until 1772, and Charles III & IV 8 reales struck for 36 years from 1772 until 1808. The portrait dollar was well received by the Chinese people. They preferred the coin over sycee, which created a premium on the coin. This was another opportunity for the European traders to make a profit by trading the 8 reales for sycee and realize a 10 to 15% profit. The next coinage was Ferdinand VII, which was struck for 16 years from 1808 until 1824. Then the Cap & Rays for 73 years from 1824 until 1897.
It is hard to find chopped 8 reales dated from 1824, the start of Mexico’s Independence, to 1857. During that time, many different governments ruled Mexico. Mintages at the various mints were low and commerce was in a turmoil. No coinage was sent to China during this time, other than incidental pieces by sailors and tourists. The traders needed something to sell in China during this time and that was opium. Some argue this is the reason for the boom in opium imports and the de-silverization of China. By the mid 1850s Mexican silver coinage began to again flow into China. In 1870 Mexico switched from the 8 reale to a one peso – the Balance Scale. It was not well received by the Chinese; Mexico returned to the 8 reales after 3 years and continued until 1897. The final coin design was the Liberty Cap Peso minted from 1898 to 1909. In addition to the many Mexican mints, coins from the cobs on were also struck at mints in Bolivia and Peru.
The U.S. also traded with China throughout the 1800s, using the Mexican 8 reales. However, because of the abundance of silver being mined in western U.S., they produced their own trade dollar in 1873 and discontinued using the Mexican 8 reales. This lasted 6 years and ended when the bullion value of the trade dollar fell below one dollar. Japan modernized their currency starting in 1870 with the production of a 1 yen coin. In 1897 Japan went on the gold standard and allowed the public to trade their silver 1 yens for gold. After the cut off date, the government counterstamped 20 million one yen coins with the character “gin” which means silver, and shipped them to Taiwan, Korea, and Southern Manchuria where some continued on to China and received chops. The British trade dollar was struck at the British mints in India from 1895 to 1914, and were used for trade throughout Asia. They became very popular in Northern China. In 1885 France began striking their trade dollar at the Paris mint. It was for use in French Indo-China, what today is Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos. The coins were also used in trade with China. The Philippine Pesos were struck at the Philadelphia and San Francisco mints from 1903 to 1906. Many of these coins were chopped at the Chinese banks in Manila and were never sent to China. Therefore they generally didn’t circulate extensively and have very few chops. The Straits Settlement dollar was struck at the British mint in Bombay. It was only struck for 2 years (1903-1904) before they reduced the silver content and were no longer accepted by the Chinese.
Chinese coins were also chopped. The first Chinese silver dollars to be minted was in Canton in 1889. They were to replace the foreign coins coming into the country. Each province issued their own coins. At first the public did not readily accept them, preferring the 8 reales. Circulation was achieved by using them to pay the military. As the coins circulated to other provinces, their value would be discounted and also tested for silver by being chopped. The first national silver coin to be struck in China was the Yuan Shih-Kai, better known as the “Fat Man” Dollar dated third year of the Republic, which was 1914. This was the main currency in use in China into the late 1920s. Over one billion coins were struck. The majority of chopped Chinese coins have just one small chop.
The practice of chopping coins began to fade in the early 1900s for many reasons. Chinese Banks would only accept chopped coins at a discount. The public began accepting fatman dollars as good silver. Mexico’s civil war disrupted the silver flow from 1910 to 1917. World War I caused havoc with the silver markets. Modernization of banking transactions, such as lines of credit, reduced the need for physical silver.
by club members
Paul Hybert reported on the ANA:
It was good to visit Philadelphia again – many little reminders of the early US coinage and the people involved with it. An evening walk from the convention center to the Delaware River and back to the hotel took me past Independence Hall and a number of historical markers. A wandering evening walk to a food store took me along streets with names I remeber from documents, and past Rittenhouse Square (named for the first Mint Director).
My favorite talk was at the JRCS meeting – a report on the composition of early silver coinage to see if the alloy was 0.900 silver or the official, and slightly lower, number. Very interesting to me, and to the large attendance. Unfortunately, no video was made of this talk or of other talks, either at club meetings or in the Money Talks sessions. Work rules at the convention center did not allow for the operation of any camera, video or still, on a tripod by an outsider – so there are no David Lisot videos for this year’s presentations. Look to club journals for articles about what happened at club meetings.
I worked at the Collector Exhibits area, where we had more than 200 cases. The ANA Museum exhibited some headline material, as did some dealers. I also saw CCC member Richard Burdick showing one case of some Eclectic Numismatic Treasure at a dealer’s table; items made from coins or incorporating coins, not for sale, but shown for our enjoyment. Photographs of some of his collection are available on the Image Collections part of the Newman Numismatic Portal – on the https://nnp.wustl.edu/library/imagecollections page, look for the listing names starting with Eclectic Numismatic Treasure.
Mark Wieclaw reported on the ANA:
Kevin Dailey and I arrived on Monday, the day before the convention. We visited the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, and The Benjamin Franklin Museum. All worth going to. We asked where we could go to enjoy the best Philly Cheesesteak and were not disappointed. Sonny’s Famous Steaks is the place to go downtown.
Afterward we headed to the Marriott to meetup with our roommate, Jeff Rosinia. The three of us spent some time at the Reading Terminal Market enjoying a couple of Yuengling’s and checking out all the vendor booths. We then went back to the room to enjoy a pizza from a nearby Pie Parlor.
Tuesday, the first day of the ANA convention was exciting. The largest opening day crowd that I’ve ever seen packed the aisles. It was really good to see such an abundance of youth walking the floor. I attended the Exhibit judging meeting and then set up at the ANA Future Conventions booth manned by John and Nancy Wilson. I passed out several hundred promotional Chicago Coin Club coasters announcing the 100th Anniversary celebration on August 6, 2019, along with Chicago 2019 stickers, to attendees who came to the booth.
Jeff, Kevin, and I headed back over to the Reading Terminal for lunch at Molly Malloy’s. The cheesesteak was not nearly as good as Sonny’s in my opinion.
Later that evening, the three us of joined about a hundred other ANA members and guests at the Museum of the American Revolution for the Kickoff. The event provided appetizers and a cash bar prior to the self guided tour. As guests departed, a goody bag with everything from chocolates to coins was handed out. A great museum that is well worth visiting. There were two highlights for us. The first was seeing George Washington’s tent that was used to strategize with other military leaders while out in the field. The other was meeting Rick Harrison, from TV’s Pawn Stars. He joined us in a spirited conversation about the accuracy of a rifle description in one of the displays. Upon our return to downtown, the three of us headed to the Hard Rock Cafe to grab some real food. As we entered, fellow CCC members Rich Lipman and Elliot Krieter were just leaving. We convinced them to join us in a nightcap.
Early Wednesday morning, the ANA hosted a meeting for members who may be interested becoming an ANA Governor. It was at this meeting that I found out about the incorrect dates that we had been given for the 2019 “World’s Fair of Money” in Chicago/Rosemont. I was handing out coasters to the ANA officials before the meeting started. It didn’t take long before someone looked at a coaster and viewed the incorrect date. Kim Kiick immediately apologized and assured me that the ANA would help correct any problems that may occur. Although the meeting was very informational, my mind was centered on the incorrect convention dates and how it would affect the club’s celebration. It was even more disturbing to find out that when I left the convention center at 4:30, the Future Convention’s booth was still handing out slips of paper with the incorrect date. Wednesday evening, Jeff, Kevin, and I enjoyed fun at the old ballpark. The contest between the Phillies and the Red Sox went back and forth with the home team pulling out a narrow victory.
Thursday morning saw Kevin and I off early for our fourteen hour trek back home. Jeff stayed through the remainder of the convention as one of the national volunteers. Perhaps he has a convention report of his own.
My reason for going to Philadelphia was to promote the club’s 100th Anniversary celebration. It turned out to be a wise decision. How much longer would we have gone promoting an event with the incorrect date if the ANA staff hadn’t been given the coasters.
|CSNS Convention||Chicago Coin Company|
|Harlan J. Berk, Ltd.||Kedzie Koins Inc.|
Items shown at our September 12, 2018 meeting,
reported by John Riley.
August 1, 2018
The Chicago Coin Club Board met August 1, 2018 at Connie’s Pizza, 2373 S. Archer Ave., Chicago. President Rich Lipman called the meeting to order at 6 PM with the following members present: Bill Burd, Paul Hybert, Dale Lukanich, Mark Wieclaw, Steve Zitowsky, Melissa Gumm, Lyle Daly, Marc Stackler, Elliott Krieter, and Carl Wolf. Jeff Rosinia and John Riley were absent.
The following points of business were discussed:
The meeting was adjourned at 7:59 PM with the next meeting scheduled to be held at 6 PM, Wednesday, November 7, 2018, Connie’s Pizza, 2373 S. Archer Ave.
Carl F. Wolf, Secretary
September 19, 2018
Meeting called to order at 7:00. In attendance: Mark Wieclaw, Bill Burd, Dale Carlson, Jeff Rosinia, Melissa Gumm, Scott McGowan.
The official slogan for the 100th anniversary is “Celebrating a Century of Sharing Numismatic Knowledge.”
Banquet: Contract with Gibsons for August 13, 2019. Still waiting to see if the Double Tree has a room available.
Dinner ticket set at $100, which includes dinner, banquet medal, Historic booklet/program, Special Red Book, and other giveaways. Room capacity of 125. A cutoff date of June 15, 2019 was set to assure a medal.
Gibsons provides complimentary valet parking.
Several prominent numismatists were mentioned for consideration as a featured speaker. Also, it was suggested that a list, of dignitaries to invite, be assembled.
Booklet/Program: is being prepared by Bill and Melissa, and should have a concept for the next meeting.
Medal: An artist’s rendering of both the official medal and banquet medal were passed around and approved with some slight changes. The official medal will feature Buckingham Fountain (horizontal) on one side and the Chicago Water Tower (Vertical) on the other. It was decided to have 200 medals struck in copper. A silver and gold version will also be offered. As with the club’s 1000th meeting medal, medals with gold select will be offered. The banquet medal will feature the design of the proposed Amazonian coinage of 1872 on the obverse. The amount of medals struck will be determined by banquet ticket purchases as of June 15, 2019.
Promotions: Correctly dated coasters have arrived in time for the ILNA convention and will be given away at other events to promote the celebration. Other planned promotions will include elongated coins, Various 1919 coins (either slabbed, counter stamped or elongated), Press Kits, and a Souvenir card for the club’s regular Saturday meeting at the ANA. A special commemorative Red Book will also be included. Scott McGowan has offered to take the lead on publicity and assembling Press Kits.
Sponsorship: To date there are 30 Century Club Members (4 at $500, 1 at $250, and 25 at $100). Since no press releases have been issued yet, several more sponsorships are expected to come in.
Other Celebrations: A cocktail reception, with light appetizers and cake, will be held prior to the beginning of the 1200th meeting on January 9, 2019 to kick things off. Something possibly at the C.S.N.S. convention in April. Closing out the year with perhaps a final celebration at the annual December banquet.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:25 with the next meeting scheduled for Wednesday, Nov. 28th at Connie’s Pizza.
|Date:||October 10, 2018|
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.
|Featured Program:||Melissa Gumm
— Currency Backed by Gold Standard
Have you ever looked at a Gold certificate and wondered what the legends “redeemable in Gold on demand” or “certifies that there have been deposited in the Treasury of the United States … Dollars in Gold coin” meant? I did. My curiosity was piqued and I wanted to understand what these legends mean, how the United States came to have paper currency that was backed by Gold coin, and what made this paper for gold concept possible.
Unless stated otherwise, our regular monthly CCC Meeting is in downtown Chicago on the second Wednesday of the month; the starting time is 6:45PM.
|October||10||CCC Meeting - Melissa Gumm - Currency Backed by Gold Standard|
|November||14||CCC Meeting - Club Auction - no featured speaker|
|December||12||CCC Meeting - Annual Banquet - Featured Speaker - to be announced|
|January||9||CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - to be announced|
|February||13||CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - to be announced|
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