|Volume 68 No. 8||August, 2022|
Soon many of us will meet at the 2022 World’s Fair of Money in Rosemont, Illinois. I work in the Collector Exhibit Area – as a shameless plug, I direct you to the online Exhibit Guide which groups the exhibits by class, just as they are grouped in the bourse hall.
My online library of US Mint-related documents (from its first century) is progressing slowly, with reports for 1860 and 1862 recently added. The main page has links to individual items.
Please consider submitting a trip report for the September Chatter. Tell us what you enjoyed, or what left a lasting impression. Consider this as practice for the report you will write on next year’s convention in Pittsburgh.
Paul Hybert, editor
The 1242nd meeting of the Chicago Coin Club was called to order by President Lyle Daly at 6:45 PM CDT, Wednesday July 13, 2022. This was a hybrid in-person and online meeting. Attendance at the meeting was 14 in person and 23 online for a total of 37 members.
Club Meeting Minutes and Treasurer’s Report
The June 2022 meeting minutes were approved as published in the Chatter, both in print and on the CCC website. Treasurer Elliott Krieter submitted treasurer’s reports for the June period. The June Period had income of $825 (Dues, Life Membership, and Misc. Income) and expenses of $286.00 (Chatter expenses, Club PO Box rent, Misc. expense) for a net June period of $539.00.
New Members and Communications
Secretary Scott McGowan announced there were no new membership applications, or club communications to report.
First Vice President John Riley introduced the Featured Program: Roxana Uskali on The German Taler: Enlightenment and the Birth of Modern Coinage.
Second Vice President Melissa Gumm introduced the evening’s four Show and Tell exhibitors.
The next meeting will be the August session I meeting, August 10, 2022, in-person and online. This will be followed by the August 18, 2022, CCC-NYNC joint dinner, and the second session of the August meeting on August 20, 2022 at 12:00pm in Rosemont, Illinois, at the Donald Stephens Convention Center, Room 21. After the ANA, there will be an online-only CCC Board Meeting on August 24, at 6:00PM CDT.
Lyle Daly adjourned the meeting at 8:09 PM CDT
Scott A. McGowan, Secretary
by Roxana Uskali,
presented to our July 13, 2022 meeting.
What is a Taler? It is a large silver coin issued by German states and territories of the Holy Roman Empire and the Hapsburg Monarchy for nearly 400 years – from the 15th century to the 19th century. The Taler is roughly what we consider a dollar, and then, of course, there are its fractionals and multiples. The weight and fineness of talers vary but are usually between 25 and 30 grams, and they are roughly 40mm in diameter.
The smallest in size (I believe) is the 1/192nd taler. Fractional denominations were issued by various countries, and their weights were not exactly standard. [A shown example was a 96th of a Taler from Pomerania – issued by Carl XI of Sweden and dated 1684.] I believe the largest issued Taler for circulation was the 10 Taler, but there was a 12½ Taler of Austria issued in 1621 that was a uniface Klippe. The larger the multiple, the scarcer the piece.
Before Talers and large silver denominations came onto the scene, the largest circulating silver coin during medieval times was the Groat/Groschen, weighing around 6gm. [An undated Groschen from Saxony, of Wilhelm I (1381-1407) was shown.] Here is an interesting fact: The Crown (England) and the Ecu (France) were gold issues before Talers, becoming silver coins afterwards.
The weight/size of the Taler was based on the Spanish 8 Reales. But, we need to go back just a bit to the Taler’s predecessor (the Groat/Groschen) which contained very little silver due to a number of reasons including war, famine, and trade issues. The development of new silver deposits in Europe, near the end of the 15th century, allowed for the size and composition of the previous currency to undergo a substantial change. A few countries issued coinage that was considerably larger, both in weight and in size.
The introduction of the silver Guldengroschen, or Guildiner, was one such type, and its success ultimately led to copycat or imitation issues across Europe. Standing as a giant within the world numismatic series, the 1486 Guldiner of Archduke Sigismund of Tyrol serves as an iconic type, recognized and coveted by collectors the world over. Its recognition as the first taler-sized coin accords it a special place, not just in numismatics, but also in world history, with the type serving as an essential prototype for all large-sized silver coins to come after it across Germany, Austria, and beyond.
Cut to 1512 in the Kingdom of Bohemia, where rich silver deposits were discovered near the town of Joachimstal (now Jáchymov of the Czech Republic) which is in the Ore Mountains. In 1520, a guildiner was minted of a somewhat reduced weight and fineness from the Guldengroschen. Coined at the Joachimstal mint, it was known as the Joachminstaler, which was eventually shortened to “taler,” and a term which later became “dollar.”
It is fair to say that the introduction of the Taler and corresponding large silver denominations across England and Europe signaled change. Occurring during the Renaissance period, an era that saw dramatic stylistic changes in art, architecture, music, philosophy, and politics, coinage also went through a substantial makeover. Let us take a closer look. The larger flan now accommodated artistic leeway and embellishment like never before. These giant “canvases” showcased artwork in the way of larger portraits, intricately detailed designs with dimension and perspective, large coats-of-arms, local landscapes and city views, celebrated themes, and larger (sometimes even rows) of text. The engravings were so lifelike, mimicking art, and the portraits were humanized and very well done.
What is in a name? Here is just a sampling of types, issued across several countries, that are types of Talers. [Obverse/reverse examples were shown of the: Daalder, Riksdaalder, Leeuwendaalder, Speciethaler, Kronenthaler, Vereinsthaler, Reichsthaler, Joachimsthaler, Conventionsthaler, and more.] Moving forward, I want to concentrate on two of my favorite types, the Mining Taler and the Wildman Taler.
Silver mining was tantamount to the production of currency, so much so that they were celebrated on a series called “Mining Talers.” According to Jeremy Bostwick’s article for CoinWeek in 2019, other metals were mined, including gold, iron, mercury, tin, copper, and lead. “One of the ways in which these metals were subtly referenced on such talers was through various celestial symbols then associated with the metals. Gold and silver, rather appropriately, were associated with the sun and the moon, while the remainder of the metals were associated with Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus, and Saturn, respectively.” [We were encouraged to see how many of these representations we could find in the upcoming images.] A 1774 coin celebrates the yield of the Holzappel mine – I love the beaming sun rays and fluffy clouds that hover over the rolling hills of the mining settlement.
A 1752 coin celebrates the yield of the Cronenburgs Glück mine. It is the final date for what must be regarded as one of the most captivating mining Talers in the series – all the more so in a practically immaculate condition, graded MS65 by NGC. You can see the hand of God emerging from the heavens, while each minute detail, from the individual boughs of the pine trees to the shingles on the buildings of the mining settlement, are fully expressed.
I am personally a huge fan of toning, and many of the talers in this collection have incredible patina. A 1756 coin commemorates the yield of the Güte des Herrn (“Goodness of the Lord”) Mine. More clouds and shining sun are centered atop this mining scene, with the settlement and horses in the foreground and trees lining the illustration in perfect perspective and depth to give a 3-D appearance. The design includes three symbols: the moon, which represents silver; the symbol of Venus, which represents copper; and the symbol of Saturn, which represents lead.
A personal favorite commemorates the yield from the Regenbogen or “rainbow” mine. The obverse depicts a stunning rainbow over the mining settlement, again done in exceptional detail – the rainbow is rendered as four concentric arcs of dots. Those are just a few examples of Mining Talers. It is a very popular series, along with city-view Talers, that collectors cannot get enough of.
Now we are moving on to my other favorite type of Taler – the Wildman series. Start with a 3 Taler dated 1665. Struck to commemorate the yield from the Harz mint, which was the most productive source of silver in Germany, the boding Wildman depicted on the obverse likely signifies that the silver used to strike this coin was extracted from the mining area around the town of Wildemann, which took its name from the figure. Legend has it that miners, looking for a promising source of silver, had discovered a Wildman in 1529 and, after succeeding in capturing him, discovered vast deposits of silver. This example was sold as part of the Paramount Collection in March, 2021.
I chose to highlight this 1629 Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel piece for its incredible detail. The Wildman’s abs and hair are impeccably done and have been incredibly preserved. A vastly superior piece from one of the longest-running Taler types and, a specimen whose quality pays testament not only to the extraordinary circumstances of its minting and preservation, but also to the superior quality of Friedrich Ulrich’s coinage in the 1620s and ’30s. Produced during a period of widespread debasement and devaluation, known as the Kipper- und Wipperzeit, corrupt minting practices had led to a shortage of high-quality, high-purity silver coinage throughout Germany. Thanks to the prolific production of the silver mines in the Harz Mountains, however, Friedrich Ulrich was able to largely avoid this economic crisis in his own realm, with the coins, down to the Duke’s personal motto – Deo et Patria (“For God and Fatherland”) – inspiring copies throughout the neighboring states.
Comparing Wildman Talers to the Mining Talers, you can see the focus is on the Wildman, and the coin’s surrounding fields are usually open, whereas the Mining Talers packed nearly every inch with design and detail. Doubling was a common feature of the Wildman type, but facial features have not been affected in this example. You have probably also noticed a running theme from this series – the Wildman usually holds something. On this example, he is holding a tree that appears to be still rooted, but on others the tree may have been uprooted (as in the previous slide), just a trunk, or even sideways in his grasp.
I have to include thise 1574 Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel example because, in this type, the Wildman is not holding a tree but a candle! Just a splendid type emblematic of the vibrant artistry that characterized the 16th and 17th-century issues of the Duchy. It is thought that the candle, from which the type derives its name (“Lichttaler”), was meant to serve as a visual metaphor for the obverse legend: Aliis inserviendo consumer (“In the service of others, I consume myself”) – Julius’ personal motto. Such was fitting for the Duke, who regarded the role of his position as being in service to his realm.
Last, I have to include a Wildwoman example. The shown worn 1617 example from the Free City of Erfurt is prevalent as a type and features symbols of alchemy to the left and right of the reverse shield. I hope you enjoyed this presentation. This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Talers, but I hope I at least entertained you for a bit!
The majority of the coins featured in the presentation are part of the Cape Coral Collection of German Coins, Part 1 – text descriptions from the lot descriptions were used in this presentation. These coins will be auctioned on August 25, starting at 9:00am CDT [see https://www.ha.com/3101] as part of our ANA sale. We will also have all 269 coins at the Chicago office on Wednesday, August 10, and Thursday, August 11, so I hope you will all stop by to view them in person because they are absolutely incredible. Walk-ins are welcome from 10:00am until 5:00pm both days. [Note: The regular August meeting of the CCC will be in downtown Chicago, about a mile away, on August 10.] We will also be holding a reception Thursday evening from 5:30-7:30, with drinks and food, so I would love for you all to come to that as well – this reception needs an RSVP to 312-260-7297 by August 9. During the week of the ANA convention, auction lot viewing (for all auctions to be held the week after the convention) will be at the Loews Hotel in Rosemont. See https://www.ha.com/1348a and https://www.ha.com/3101a for details on the US and World/Ancient auctions, respectively.
|Chicago Coin Company|
|Harlan J. Berk, Ltd.|
|Kedzie Koins Inc.|
|Classical Numismatic Group|
Items shown at our July 13, 2022 meeting,
reported by Melissa Gumm.
July 20, 2022
Attending: Steve Zitowsky (Chair), Dale Lukanich (Asst Chair), Greg Gajda, Carl Wolf, Mark Wieclaw, Deven Kane, Dale Carlson, John Riley, Rich Lipman, Bob Feiler, Paul Hybert, Jim Ray, Scott McGowan, Dan Shemwell, Mike Gasvoda, Marc Charles Ricard, and Jeff Amelse.
Committee Chair Steve Zitowsky called the meeting to order at 7:00PM, reporting that Logan from the ANA says at least 450 tables have been sold for the show and 27 tables are still available. The interactive floorplan is available at money.org under Events, World’s Fair of Money.
Exhibits: Paul Hybert and Marc Ricard reported there will be 226 cases of exhibits. The exhibit area will also have a table for a raffle and three tables for items up for auction with final bidding to be completed during the Friday ANA banquet. The workers in the Collector Exhibits Area will select a supervisor pool for both the raffle and auction tables, which will be supported by Ambassadors as requested. The format for People’s Choice will be slightly different in that exhibit area attendees will receive their People’s Choice ballot after submitting their raffle ticket. There is also a brief exhibit synopsis listed on the World’s Fair of Money website. Marc and Paul to review their Ambassador needs for the Raffle, Auction, and General Exhibits areas, and email to Scott.
Money Talks: Mark Wieclaw reported that the speaker’s medals are currently being engraved. Rich Lipman and Bob Feiler will assist Mark in doing the Speaker introductions. There are 18 total sessions, nine per day on Thursday and Friday. Two sessions have two speakers, therefore 20 speaker’s medals.
Ambassadors: Scott McGowan reported the Ambassadors list is at 44 individuals. A first draft schedule has been shared with the host club chair and assistant chair. Three ambassadors have yet to provide the days they can be at the show. There will be two “Ambassador’s book of knowledge” at the Ambassador’s table, containing the Bourse and convention center floor plans, daily convention schedule, nearest UPS, USPS, and Fedex locations, ANA membership information, and map of convention center with parking garage and entertainment district. Scott to email Steve with table and power needs for the Ambassador station at the show’s entrance.
Pages: John Riley reported speaking with Jennifer at the ANA; she has 12 applicants and more are expected closer to the show.
YN/Scouts Workshop: Jim Ray reported that there is a new sponsor for the YN workshop, Kevin Lipton Rare Coins, who will be sponsoring some donations for the youth. Registration deadline is July 29, 2022. Approximately 20 youth have registered so far. Scott McGowan asked about the “Scouting at the ANA” badge and if we will be doing it. Ray has the questionnaire and will look to promote it. Both the CCC and ILNA should have a supply of the round patches. Scott indicated he would investigate a 2022 patch segment.
Members-at-Large: Carl Wolf will staff the CCC table (bourse table #626) during the show. Carl indicated the ANA will have free Wifi but it may be overloaded with so many users. Carl will have power strips with USB ports for phone charging at the booth, and also a hotspot. Carl also asked about the daily volunteer meetings which are usually held Wed-Sat at 8:00am, to review the prior day’s highlights and issues. The daily volunteer meetings are usually attended by ANA staff and Host club chairs and Ambassador Chairs.
Joint Dinner: Mark Wieclaw reported on the “Great Numismatic Pizza Party,” a joint dinner between the Chicago Coin Club and the New York Numismatic Club. The dinner will be Thursday August 18, 2022, at 6:30pm Sharp. Food will be available from 7:00 pm and replenished through 8:00pm. The event will be at CRUST Brewery in their private event spaces with the buffet tables in between the rooms. Mark to request the restaurant to have stations up in front of the buffet with “Private event” signs to keep regular restaurant diners from the buffet tables. Attendance is limited to 100 and currently at 60. Price is $55, $60 if paid at door as we request payment in advance. Deadline is Tuesday August 16, 2022. Attendees must be members of CCC or NYNC, or their guest. Wrist bands are recommended for attendees at check in. Mark is working on a Souvenir sheet for the dinner.
COVID: Paul asked about the Covid pandemic status and about precautions and thoughts. The committee will always follow recommendations by the ANA and local health information. Jeff Amelse offered to secure a supply of masks for our committee members which will be at the ambassador’s table.
The meeting was adjourned at 7:46PM.
2024 Host Club meeting on Wednesday, October 18, 2023, 7:00PM (pending ANA approval of CCC as host club).
2022 World’s Fair of Money® Dates
Donald E. Stephens Convention Center Rosemont, IL
August 15-20, 2022 (Monday-Saturday)
2024 World’s Fair of Money® Dates
Donald E. Stephens Convention Center Rosemont, IL
August 6-10, 2024 (Tuesday-Saturday)
Secretary, Chicago Coin Club
|The “Things, not Numismatic, to do” list is available online at http://www.chicagocoinclub.org/ANA2022TTD, or scan the QR code.|
|Date:||August 10, 2022, First session|
|Time:||6:45PM CDT (UTC-05:00)|
At the Chicago Bar Association, 321 S. Plymouth Court, 3rd or 4th 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.
Because things can change between when this is written and we meet, please bring your face covering to the meeting – all attendees must follow the city’s and building’s rules.
This will be another attempt at a regular in-person meeting in the Covid-19 era. We will try for a better experience than in the past, but please be prepared for possible diifficulties.
|Online:||For all the details on participating online in one of our club meetings, visit our Online Meeting webpage at www.chicagocoinclub.org/meetings/online_meeting.html. Participation in an online meeting requires some advance work by both our meeting coordinator and attendees, especially first-time participants. Please plan ahead; read the latest instructions on the day before the meeting!|
|Featured Program:||Lawrence Lee —
Indian Peace Medals at the Denver Museum
Between 1951 and 1968, Mary and Francis Crane travelled the country visiting Indian reservations, trading posts, and museums in search of high-quality artifacts that represented the finest in Native American artisanship. Join us to hear Lawrence Lee, PhD, describe the Cranes’ bequeathed collection of Native American “Peace Medals” produced by the U.S. Mint and gifted to tribal leaders. Dr. Lee will cover the provenance, journey, and making of the book, Indian Peace Medals and Other Medals at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science.
|Date:||August 20, 2022, Second session|
|Location:||Saturday, on the last day of the ANA Convention, which is held at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center, 5555 N. River Road, Rosemont, IL. No admission charge for anything on Saturday, but admission to the bourse requires registration, and that requires a photo-ID. And the parking lots will charge $$$.|
|Online:||Due to the large meeting room and abbreviated
agenda, remote attendees’ participation likely will be limited
to watching and listening to the meeting.
At last year’s convention, we supported a very few remote
attendees from the Stephens Convention Center; so we should be
able to support remote attendees again this year – but
there might be surprises and difficulties whenever technology
Visit our Online Meeting webpage, at www.chicagocoinclub.org/meetings/online_meeting.html, for all the details on participating in an online club meeting. Participation in an online meeting requires some advance work by both our meeting coordinator and attendees, especially first-time participants. Please plan ahead; read the latest instructions on the day before the meeting!
|Featured Program:||Gilles Bransbourg
— Inflation and Coinage in the Late Roman Empire
Inflation is a topic much in the news today, but it is hardly “new.” Join us at the World’s Fair of Money in Rosemont, IL to hear a presentation by Dr. Gilles Bransbourg, Executive Director of the American Numismatic Society in New York City, where he will talk on hyperinflation during the late Roman Empire period. In A.D. 170 the denarius was composed of 75% silver; by A.D. 270, coinage silver had been reduced to a mere 5% and would shortly convert to a bronze composition only.
Unless stated otherwise, our regular monthly CCC Meeting is in downtown Chicago and also online on the second Wednesday of the month; the starting time is 6:45PM CT.
|August||10||CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - Lawrence Lee on Indian Peace Medals at the Denver Museum|
|August||16-20||ANA in Rosemont, at Donald E. Stephens Convention Center. Admission is free for ANA members — for details, see http://www.worldsfairofmoney.com.|
|August||20||CCC Meeting - Noon 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 - Gilles Bransbourg on Inflation and Coinage in the Late Roman Empire
|September||14||CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - Jeffrey Amelse on Early U.S. Half Dollars, 1794-1839: A Study|
|October||12||CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - Steve Feller on Stagecoach and Post Office Scrip of the American Civil War|
|November||9||CCC Meeting - Featured Speaker - to be announced|
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