|Volume 65 No. 4||April 2019|
Although the March Chatter was late due to unexpected events, this April issue is late because I am in Pittsburgh for the ANA’s NMS. Looking ahead, the May Chatter will be later than usual due to the CSNS convention being held so late in April.
The usual plan is to complete the next month’s issue on the last Wednesday of the prior month — in other words, two weeks before that month’s regular meeting in downtown Chicago, which usually is held on the second Wednesday of each month.
The important thing to remember is: only four months until ANA comes to Rosemont!
Paul Hybert, editor
Session I of the 1202nd meeting of the Chicago Coin Club was called to order by President Rich Lipman at 6:45 PM, Wednesday, March 13, 2019 at the Chicago Bar Association Building, 321 S. Plymouth Court, Downtown Chicago with 24 members and 4 guests: Matt Smith, Kathy Rosinia, Wendy Wang, and Dennis Hoelzle.
The Minutes of February meeting were approved as published in the Chatter. Steve Zitowsky delivered the Treasurer’s Report showing February revenue of $3,715.00 and expenses of $4,267.18. A motion was passed approving the report.
Kathy Rosinia’s application received a first reading. A motion was passed to drop for non-payment of dues the following members: Dennis Chiechna, Dai Zoujun, Eric Delgadillo, Chuck Jacobs, Curtis Personett, and Craig Teichen.
First V.P. Lyle Daly requested members to volunteer to give featured programs. He introduced the evening’s speakers, Robert Leonard and Bill Burd, who spoke on “The Objects of Coin Collecting.” Following a question and answer period, Lyle presented Robert and Bill with ANA Educational Certificates and engraved Club medals suspended on a neck ribbon.
Second Vice President John Riley introduced the ten exhibitors for the evening.
The meeting was recessed at 8:53 PM and will reconvene at 1 PM, Saturday, March 16 at the PCDA Currency and Coin Convention, Hilton Rosemont/Chicago O’Hare.
Session II of the 1202nd meeting was held March 16, 2019 in conjunction with the PCDA National Currency and Coin Convention, held at the Hilton Rosemont/Chicago O’Hare, 5550 N. River Road, Rosemont, IL. President Richard Lipman reconvened the meeting at 1 PM with 18 members and 8 guests: Louise Boling, Angel Alamilla, June Back Frydman, Keith Thode, Donald Kagin, Terence Kafka, Al Bailey, and Robert Vandevender II.
A motion was passed to adopt an abbreviated agenda.
The application of Donald Kagin received first reading. Don spoke briefly about the importance of active coin clubs to the health of the ANA. He also offered 2-cent tokens for meeting attendees who complete a form “My 2¢ Worth” with idea(s) to improve the ANA.
Mark Wieclaw, Chair of the 100th Anniversary Committee, spoke on the Club Banquet Celebration, August 13, at the ANA Convention. Mark spoke on the memorabilia in the works that will exceed the banquet cost of $100 per person.
First Vice President Lyle Daly introduced the featured speaker and member Dave Frank, of St. Louis, Missouri, who gave a presentation “The Complete Book of World War II USA POW and Internment Camp Chits” and the process of producing a numismatic book. Following a question-and-answer period, Lyle presented Dave with an ANA Educational Certificate and an engraved speaker medal with a neck ribbon.
The meeting was adjourned at 2:09 PM.
Carl F. Wolf, Secretary
presented by Bill Burd and Robert Leonard,
to our March 13, 2019 meeting.
Bill Burd started the presentation with an overview of Virgil Brand, the latest inductee into the CCC Hall of Fame. Q. David Bowers described Virgil Brand as deserving the title of the greatest coin collector who ever lived and one of the most knowledgeable numismatists of his time.
Robert Leonard then assumed the persona of Virgil Brand to present Brand’s paper, titled “The Objects of Coin Collecting,” first presented at the April 1905 meeting of the Chicago Numismatic Society.
Ask collectors their reason for collecting and almost invariably they answer that it is for recreation. With the greater number this is the paramount motive, and as recreation is a necessity as well as a diversion, a collection in providing it, performs a service of no little value. But recreation is of several kinds and compensating mental recreation is more difficult to find than that of a physical character.
Perhaps the chief value of collecting is that it arouses so keen an interest in the objects collected, that research and study concerning them, which otherwise would have been uninteresting and irksome and might have received little or no attention, becomes an attractive recreation, and in consequence is made much more thorough and comprehensive. A prompt reward for the expended effort is a greatly increased appreciaticn of the collected objects. Knowledge gained through an absorbing interest in the things to which it relates, is fixed far more firmly in the mind than if acquired with no such incentive. Nor will the impulse towards the acquisition of knowledge, thus given, easily exhaust itself as it will be constantly regenerated by the discovery of new material.
The foregoing applies equally to all collecting. Accepting the assertion as to its chief value, it follows that, except when the collector has a special interest in a particular class of objects, the most advantageous material to collect is that which requires the most general and widespread knowledge for its comprehension and appreciation. From this point of view, coins and medals occupy a predominant position.
* * * *
The majority, possibly, of coin collectors commence their cabinets with the single thought of finding amusement, and view collecting merely as a pastime, interesting and fascinating no doubt, but with no more substantial value than to employ agreeably a few idle hours. The acquisition accidently, or otherwise, of one or more coins or medals, which are at the time unknown and strange to them and therefore arouse their curiosity, engenders a desire to possess other specimens with similar attributes — and thus they become collectors.
At this period they have no very clear idea of what they hope to accomplish; it is only when they have progressed sufficiently to realize the magnitude and unlimited resources of the numismatic field that they perceive the splendid and varying opportunities that coin collecting presents, and it is then that they define more clearly to themselves the objects and purposes for which they henceforth collect.
Naturally these will differ greatly and will vary according to the inclination of the individual, depending upon which features of numismatics appeal to him most forcibly. Some will find the speculative possibilities the greatest attraction, and will collect only for the purpose of financial gain; these, however, should be considered dealers, rather than collectors.
Many restrict their efforts to coins of a selected period or locality, or of a certain metal or denomination, or gather only specimens relating to one or more separate or related subjects. Collectors adopt a great variety of limitations, some of them unique. For example, one collector confined himself to coins from dies with errors, another to those bearing representations of animals and still another limited the animals to elephants.
But all, no matter how much they have restricted their field, realize early in their collecting experience that in order to proceed intelligently and arrive at a proper and thorough comprehension of their coins, research and study more or less exhaustive is imperative.
To the collector’s zeal is now added a craving for knowledge, and his cabinet becomes a powerful and valuable influence in favor of education.
The branches of learning to which that science of numismatics is related are numerous and many collectors specialize, selecting one or more of them, according to their inclination or interest. It is a part of archaeology and is a valuable aid in the study of mythology, heraldry, iconography and other subjects. But its relation is closest to history; in fact coins have been freely employed in revising the latter, and much valuable historical data rest entirely upon their testimony.
In the domain of art, coins and medals occupy an important place. They furnish instantaneous ocular proof of the attained stage in its development at all times, and are unimpeachable contemporaneous witnesses to its progress. Nothing will illustrate more strikingly the advance of art, from the crude attempts in the earliest times until it reached its greatest perfection, centuries later — its gradual decline and almost total eclipse during the darkness and turmoil of the middle ages and its rejuvenation thereafter, than a series of coins covering the period involved. The features of numerous historical personages, as well as the costumes worn in past ages, are known to us only from coins and medals, on which they are faithfully reproduced by contemporary artists.
The economist may be chiefly interested in coins as money and will find his cabinet indispensable in the study of the monetary systems of nations, the relative value of the precious metals at various periods, the fineness and weights of the world’s coins and their purchasing power at different times and in different localities.
* * * *
The true numismatist, while he may specialize in the kind or class of coins, does not do so in his researches concerning those he collects, but strives to acquire a full knowledge of everything pertaining to them. He notes the size, weight, composition, shape and date of issue of each specimen and learns its name and place in the monetary system of the times. He investigates the cause of its rarity, if it is rare — due perhaps to it being one of a small emission or of a recalled issue — and if the latter he tries to learn the cause for recall. He translates the inscriptions, extending abbreviations in order to do so, discovers the application of quotations, when such are employed, and ascertains the significance of each device, symbol and letter.
To the uninitiated all of this may seem a formidable task, but in reality it is far from being so. Careful study of the history of the nation or other authority issuing the coins, will yield the greater part of the desired information; some portions of it, of course, must be derived from special sources, and this last applies peculiarly to researches concerning coins issued without the sanction of any constituted authority (private coins).
* * * *
Although the number of coin collectors has greatly increased in the last two decades, it is still relatively small, due, probably, to a variety of causes. Comparatively few people realize the endless entertainment a collection affords, not only for its possessor, but also for those to whom he exhibits and explains the specimens; nor is its potency as a spur to investigation and study generally understood. In addition, there is a widely prevailing impression that coin collecting is an expensive undertaking. This is not necessarily so, as the most valuable results can be obtained as well from inexpensive specimens as from their more costly relations. By inexpensive specimens is meant such which are so because of an ample supply, and not those which are cheap because in poor preservation. Well preserved specimens are by far the most satisfactory to study from, as the legibility of the inscriptions and the distinctness of the designs will assist much in avoiding error.
It should be peculiarly the task of numismatic societies to disseminate knowledge as to the advantages and pleasures of coin collecting and to correct erroneous impressions in relation thereto.
After completing Brand’s 1905 presentation, Robert broke character to note that much of the above remains true today. Back in Brand’s persona, Robert and Bill conducted an interview and took questions from the audience. We heard that Brand’s wide collecting interests were piqued by reading about new things; he started the Chicago Coin Company in 1907 to help him purchase new material and to sell duplicates; and about the journals where he logged all puchases for his collections.
presented by Dave Frank,
to our March 16, 2019 meeting.
This presentation, based upon the book The Complete Book of World War II USA POW & Internment Camp Chits by Dave Frank and David E. Seelye, had three major parts: how the book was written, some general information about the camps and chits, and then some details about Illinois and Chicago-area camps. The first book on this topic was published in 1970 by Whitman, and other books have followed covering diifferent ranges of material, such as: which camp types, which wars, and which issuing countries. Larry Smolinski started writing a book in 1991 but, due to other interests, handed the work over to Dave Frank and David E. Seelye.
Common PC programs were used while writing the book: Word for the text, Excel for tables, Photoshop to scan, crop, and size pictures, and Adobe. Arthur Friedberg of the Coin & Currency Institute helped with publishing the book — finding a publisher might be a hard task, but they quickly found one by showing what they had produced. We all know the basic structur of a book, but look at other books to make sure nothing is missed.
Their book covers notes only for camps intended for Prisoners of War, which were military personnel captured by the other side. Internment camps contained civilians, except for neutral countries which used them to hold lost and stray military combatants who had entered a neutral country, and were not covered in this book. Concentration camps and other types of camps are not covered by this book.
Workers from POW camps were given the opportunity to work at some law pay rate, but the jobs could not be directly involved with military items. The U.S. POW camps usually were involved in agriculture, flood control projects, and road work. A POW could work as a mechanic in those contexts, but could not work in a tank plant.
Although the POWs earned U.S. dollars, they were not paid in U.S. coins and currency; they were paid in chits denominated in cents or dollars. These were issued to prevent use outside of camp in case of escape, as well as to prevent bribery of guards within a camp. Chits were issued in booklets with a total value of up to $20, with individual chits havings values from 1¢ to $2. A $2 chit is known only from Fort Sheridan, north of Chicago. Each camp had its own chits printed — about 12 companies in the U.S. printed these. Chits could only be used at the camp canteen, where the clerk had to tear each chit from the booklet. We saw a number of slides with groups of chits from various camps in various denominations. Dave was especially happy to have a 1¢ chit from the EXCURSION INLET canteen; this is from when POWs were sent to the Aleutians in 1945, to disassemble a base.
After Italy surrendered in 1943, the U.S. created a new class of camps for Italian POWs, called Italian Service Units. We saw a group of chits from these, some with the wording ITALIAN SERVICE BRANCH. The POWs in these camps had fewer limits on their conduct: they could mingle with locals and perform military work. We next saw a group of chits from Civilian Internment Camps, marked as good at a Post, Canteen, or Exchange — one was from Roswell, New Mexico. Internment camps were for civilians from belligerant countries, and some were part of a camp for POWs. Much information about internment camps is missing.
There were three base camps located in Illinois: Camp Ellis in Fulton County, Camp Grant near Rockford, and Fort Sheridan near Highwood. There also were 17 subcamps in Illinois, with Dave providing details about the five in the Chicago area. Camp Pine was located in Des Plaines, located on the east bank of the Des Plaines River, about a half mile south of Euclid Avenue. Arlington Field was located south of Arlington Heights, at Central and Dwyer; the 75 POWs quartered here worked at the Glenview Naval Air Station, working in the mess halls, heavy labor, and grounds maintenance. There also was a subcamp located at the Glenview Naval Air Station. Camp Skokie Valley was located on the west side of Harms Road between Glenview Road and Lake Street; it housed about 400 POWs (mostly Luftwaffe air crews and Afrika Corps members) who worked in surrounding orchards and farms. Camp Thornton was an old Civilian Conservation Corps camp located at 184th Street and Cottage Grove Avenue; it now is Sweet Woods South in the Cook County Forest Preserve system.
Dave concluded the program by answering some questions. What was done with the spent chits? He was not sure, but maybe they were cancelled by tearing off a corner. Where are chits found? In POW scrap books in Germany and Italy; these are offered on eBay. It is very unlikely to find a complete unused booklet, by a local person who maybe found one in a desk after the war; The chits and booklets were real money, and were treated accordingly. After the war booklets, chits, and back pay were exchanged for U.S. money. That helps explain why more of the 1¢ chits were kept as souvenirs than the higher values. German POWs might not have left the U.S. until mid 1946, but some spent a year or two in European countries in work brigades before returning home.
|CSNS Convention||Chicago Coin Company|
|PCDA Convention||Harlan J. Berk, Ltd.|
Items shown at our February 13, 2019 meeting,
reported by John Riley.
Reminder: You can email to John a description of what you will show at a meeting, to give him a start on this write-up. Send it to email@example.com.
March 6, 2019
The sixth meeting of the 100th Anniversary Planning Committee was called to order at 6:13pm by chairperson Mark Wieclaw. In attendance were Dale Lukanich, Sharon Blocker, Melissa Gumm, Bill Burd, Dale Carlson, Scott McGowan, Jeff Rosinia, and Richard Hamilton.
Medals: There will be a total of 200 oval shaped copper medals struck for the official 100th Anniversary. There will be an option for members to order pieces with gold/platinum highlights added. A minimum order of 25 pieces has to be placed for the highlights. Copper medals will be offered at $40 each and medals with highlights will be $70. We are still exploring a .999 silver and .999 gold option. Payment for the dies ($3,850) has been sent to Mint Masters.
The banquet medal design has been finalized and we are waiting for a formal invoice from Mint Master to seek approval from the Club. There will be 150 medals struck in copper and we will explore offering a medal in .999 silver.
Banquet: After visiting Gibson’s, it was decided that the maximum comfortable seating would be at 132 guests (12 tables of 11 chairs). With a banquet ticket of $100, CCC members can order up to two tickets with a deadline of June 1 before opening it up to non-members. Ten tickets are being reserved for invited guests. A second deposit of $4,000 is due to Gibson’s at the end of July. Complimentary valet parking is available.
Sponsorships: The Century Club has taken in over $6,800 so far. An additional option is being added. Two Sponsorship levels of $500+ are being offered to defray the cost of the 100th Anniversary medal dies and the printing of the limited edition Red Book® to be handed out at the banquet. A $250+ sponsorship is being offered to defray the cost of the banquet medal dies.
The goodie bag was discussed and Melissa brought two sizes and shapes to choose from. The committee decided on the 6”x 9” option in dark blue with gold text. The price is not to exceed $450.
A working copy of the Banquet program was passed around for all to see. Other ideas discussed were: NGC encapsulated U.S. 1919 five cent pieces, table centerpieces, name tags, ribbons, special invitations for representatives from Numismatic News, Coin World, ANA, ANS, CSNS, and ILNA.
The committee discussed other possible celebrations at CSNS. (Jeff offered to bring cupcakes), ANA meeting on Saturday, August 17 (Souvenir sheets?), and the annual banquet in December.
Next meeting: May 1, 2019 at Home Run Inn on Archer Avenue. Meeting adjourned at 8:16pm.
March 19, 2019
The fifth meeting of the 2019 ANA Convention Committee met March 19, 2019 in the offices of Harlan J. Berk, Ltd., 77 W. Washington, 13th Floor, Downtown Chicago. Assistant Host Chairman Elliott Krieter called the meeting to order at 6:00 PM with Steve Zitowsky, Mark Wieclaw, Melissa Gumm, Dale Carlson, Harlan Berk, Scott McGowan, John Kent, and Carl Wolf in attendance.
The committee gave a warm round of applause and thanks to Harlan Berk for providing the meeting space, dinner, and parking.
Volunteer Report by Carl Wolf:
Page Committee Report by John Kent & Dale Carlson:
Youth Committee Report by Scott McGowan:
Money Talks Committee Report by Mark Wieclaw:
Report on the Club’s 100th Anniversary Celebration at the ANA Convention by Mark Wieclaw:
Report from Steve Zitowsky, Treasurer:
Report from Elliott Krieter, Assistant Chair:
The meeting was adjourned at 7:08 PM.
Carl Wolf, Secretary
Chicago Coin Club
|Date:||April 10, 2019, First session|
At the Chicago Bar Association, 321 S. Plymouth Court, 3rd floor meeting room. Please remember the security measures at our meeting building: everyone must be prepared to show their photo-ID and register at the guard’s desk.
|Featured Program:||John Riley
— The Die Sinkers of Chicago
In concert with Chicago Coin Club’s 100th anniversary, John Riley will take a close look at old Chicago — the City’s own numismatic history from the bustling industrial age — along with the different individuals and firms who struck trade tokens and medals in the City. He will display many examples of their work and explain how the information age has made the myriad of yesteryear’s products considerably more identifiable and collectible.
|Date:||April 27, 2019, Second Session|
|Location:||At the Central States Numismatic Society (CSNS) Convention, which is held at the Renaissance Hotel & Convention Center, 1551 N. Thoreau Drive, Schaumburg, IL.|
|Featured Program:||Shanna Schmidt
— Depiction of Women on Ancient Coins
Women are beginning to gain an unusual amount of prominence both in the workplace and privately. This new generation of strong women is clearly evident in the modern world, but what about women from antiquity? How are women from the Greek, Roman and Byzantine (or Eastern Roman) periods represented and remembered? I will present how women are represented on coinage and what can be learned about their lives aside from their images. Strong women such as Cleopatra, Livia, Julia Domna, and Irene are remembered, but compared with their male counterparts there is sadly little more than a handful of names that stand out as iconic women from antiquity. I hope to shed light on how women have been represented on coinage and what we can learn about them from coins.
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.
|April||10||CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - John Riley on The Die Sinkers of Chicago|
|April||25-27||80th Anniversary Convention of the Central States Numismatic Society at the Schaumburg Renaissance Hotel & Convention Center, 1551 North Thoreau Drive, Schaumburg, IL. There is a $5 per day admission charge, but admission is free for CSNS Life Members. For details, refer to their website, https://www.centralstatesnumismaticsociety.org/|
|April||27||CCC Meeting - 1pm at the CSNS Convention,
which is held at the Schaumburg Convention Center.
No admission charge for our meeting.
Featured Speaker - Shanna Schmidt on Depiction of Women on Ancient Coins
|May||8||CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - Robert Feiler on Things People Do to Coins|
|June||12||CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - to be announced|
|July||10||CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - to be announced|
|August||13-17||ANA in Rosemont, at Donald E. Stephens Convention Center. Admission is free for ANA members — for details, see http://www.worldsfairofmoney.com.|
|August||13||CCC 100th Anniversary Banquet - Featured Speaker - Clifford Mishler|
|August||17||CCC Meeting - 1pm at the ANA Convention,
which is held at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center, 5555 North River Road, Rosemont, IL.
No admission charge for our meeting.
Featured Speaker - to be announced
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CHICAGO COIN CLUB
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