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ACCent: The Monthly Newsletter of the Anchorage Coin Club

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Volume 16, Number 12

December 2003

December Christmas Party / Meeting
Tues., Dec. 9th, 2003 Central Lutheran Church

6:00 PM Start



    We want to remind everyone in the coin club that there will be NO meeting on the first Wednesday of December. Instead....the coin club's Christmas Party scheduled for Tuesday, December 9th will be our December meeting date.


In last month's newsletter, our Chief Editor (Larry Nakata) put down the wrong date for the Christmas Party. The second Tuesday of the month falls on December 9th.....not December 11th. Apologies are in order for putting down the wrong date.

By now...many of you have received calls from Roy Brown on items to bring for the club's "Potluck" Christmas party. Looks like we are going to have a pretty good turnout for the event. We've got much to be thankful for as we come to the end of our 15th year.

For those of you who have purchased the club's 15th year medallion sets, we should have them ready for you by the time of the Christmas party on December 9th. Larry Nakata will be placing the orders with the Alaska Mint at the end of November. We will also be ordering some extra medallions in the event some of you wish to purchase an extra numbered set or extra medallion.

Besides good food and good company, we will have award presentations and the evening event...our coin club's Christmas auction.

For this year's Christmas auction, we ask that members bring in coins on the day of the auction. We're going to change the rules a bit and make it a spontaneous auction in which we will not reveal what coins or numismatic items will be up for auction. In years past this newsletter would do an advance posting of the auction lots. It should be interesting to see what auction lots are submitted....which may surprise you

Also keep in mind that our club's raffle prize, an 1881 ICG slabbed US Proof 3 cent nickel in Proof-64 DCAM (deep cameo) condition, will be raffled off at the Christmas Party. This is the best raffle prize of the year. Final tickets will be sold for this coin at $5/ticket. Not very many tickets have been sold to date, so one of you will likely be the winner of this nice coin.

At our club's last meeting on November 11th, club president Stan Mead gave a presentation on "General Grading of Coins- Uncirculated Grades". Because of the length of the VHS presentation tape on grading, we will finish the remainder of that tape next year...probably at our January 7th meeting.

Also discussed.... starting with our January 7th meeting we will have display cases available for coins and numismatic items that members wish to sell. You can post a price on that coin or numismatic item. We want to encourage our coin club members to take advantage of these display cases at each meeting. A coin club is a place to sell, trade, and buy coins from other collectors and members.

The membership prize, a 2 oz. 2001 Alaska Mint Word Special Olympics Alaska medallion, was won by Bill Hamilton. We also had a number of door prizes at our November 11th meeting. Among the prizes won were:

See you at the Christmas Party on Tuesday, December 9th.....Your Editors.



Schedule of Events for the Month of December:

  1. Anchorage Coin Club Christmas Party and Christmas Coin Auction: December 9th (Tuesday) evening/ Location: CENTRAL LUTHERAN CHURCH/ downstairs meeting area. Starting time: 6 PM. See article in this month's newsletter.

  2. Anchorage Coin Club Board Meeting: December 17th (Wednesday) at 7:00 PM at the Hillside Chalet located at 631 E. 22nd Avenue (Ph# 274-0015). Club members welcome.


Minutes of the November 19th Board Meeting

The Board meeting was called to order at 7:15 PM by President Stan Mead.

Bills and correspondence were first reviewed by the Board. The coin club's liability insurance was approved for renewal by the Board with the 2004 cost being $327.

A check was also made from the club's gaming account to the Anchorage Coin Club in the amount of $374.44. These are profits from our raffles that goes to the coin club for its programs.

The Board then addressed planning of the coin club's Christmas party. It was pointed out that a mistake was made in last month's newsletter on the date of the party. Corrections will be made to this month's newsletter stating the party will be held on Tuesday, December 9th.

Based upon the calls made by Roy Brown we are expected to have an attendance of about 50 people at the Christmas party. Larry Nakata and Loren Lucason will accordingly pick up the items needed for the party. Auction items for the Christmas Auction can be submitted to Larry Nakata. Otherwise, members will be asked to bring in their coins and numismatic items to the Christmas Party/Auction on December 9th.

Awards at the party will be for YN Numismatist of the Year and the Anchorage Coin Club Numismatist of the Year. The Board made selections for these awards. The award winners to be announced at the party.

Larry Nakata provided a progress report on the 15th year medallions. As of the Board meeting, 29 numbered sets have been ordered by members of our club....along with 4 Bronze and 4 silver medallions. Carl proposed a plan in which an incentive be given to members who wish to purchase 5 or more sets of medallions. The Board subsequently approved the following incentive plan:

The Board also decided to order 11 additional numbered sets. One of the sets will be number #49... which will be donated to the American Numismatic Association. The Anchorage coin Club has traditionally provided the ANA with a free medallion. The ANA presently has our club's 5th and 10th year sets. The remaining 10 numbered sets will be kept as part of the club's inventory for future posterity.

At the board meeting, Carl proposed an idea on an improvement to the club's newsletter. Carl recommended that the newsletter include a membership signup form. The idea found merit with the Board and will be implemented in the next newsletter.

Larry Nakata stated that, thusfar, two ideas have been submitted for improvements to the newsletter:

An award will be given out for the best idea at our December 9th Christmas party.

Final agenda item of the meeting was planning for a coin club sponsored show at the Shipcreek Mall in February. Stan Mead and Loren Lucason were appointed as the "point people" in working with Bill Hamilton on this project. Planning to continue in the upcoming months.

As there was not further business to discuss the Board meeting was adjourned at 8:05 PM.




The next YN meeting will coincide with our club's Christmas Party for 6 PM at the Central Lutheran Church on Tuesday, December 9th. It's a time for everyone, especially you YNs, to enjoy and have a great time. There should also be some pretty good deals on coins at the auction.

Come have some fun and see you there...Don and Marilyn.


by Carl Mujagic (Life Member #2)

    In 1883, the U.S. Mint changed the coin design of the shield nickel to the liberty head design. The first and original minting of the liberty nickel had a large roman numeral 'V on the reverse. But the Mint left off the word 'cents' so there was no clear denomination on the coin. Soon after, cheats and con artists began gold plating the nickels and

spending them as a newly designed five dollar gold piece. They would basically just purchase something inexpensive such as a 50 cent item and receive $4.50 in change, which at that time was a substantial sum of money. After word came back to the U.S. Mint that people were being cheated they changed the reverse design and added the word 'cents.' These gold plated nickels then became known as "Racketeer Nickels."

One of the most well known stories of the coin is of Josh Tatum. He would attempt to purchase a five cent item at businesses and use one of his gold plated nickels. If the clerk noticed that it was a nickel, he would simply take the item and leave with his purchase, but there were many times that when he would receive $4.95 in change. And of course, he would not say a word about the mistake, keeping the change. Josh Tatum inspired the phrase "I was just Joshin," which is still used to this day." Racketeering nickels are still an affordable and interesting coin with a nice piece of history to go along with it. They still can be purchased with an average selling price of $3 to $10 each. Definitely a fun and affordable numismatic collectible ...... Carl.

Trivia: "The new $20 note will mark the first use of background color in U.S. currency since the 1905 series $20 gold certificate, which was tinted gold."


by Larry Nakata (Life Member #3)

    By now, all of you are aware of the new US $20 bill that was recently introduced. It's got a bit of color to it. More important, it has new designs and security features....feature intended to prevent counterfeiting by new technology. With advances in technology, digital counterfeiting has become a key problem....resulting in this redesign.

When comparing the new $20 note to the previous $20 design back in the 1990's (last century), the watermark, color-shifting ink, and security thread remain as security features:

Security Thread- Holding the $20 bill up to a light, look for a security thread, or plastic strip, that is imbedded in the paper. It should run vertically up the left side of the note. If one looks closely, it will show the words "USA TWENTY" and a small flag... visible from both sides of the new $20 bill.

Color Shifting Ink- Look at the number "20" in the lower right corner of the face of the new $20 bill. When you tilt the bill "up and down", note that the color changes from copper to green.

Watermark- Holding the $20 bill up to a light, look for a watermark (or faint image) of the portrait of President Andrew Jackson. The watermark is part of the paper and can be seen from both sides of the note.

New features that have been introduced in this latest $20 redesign are:

Color- The new $20 bill adds subtle background colors of green and peach to both sides of the note. The words "TWENTY USA" has been printed in blue in the background just to the right of the portrait. Small yellow 20s can be seen in the background on the back of the new $20 bill.

Symbols of Freedom- Two new symbols of freedom-American eagles- have been added to the front of the new bill. There is the large blue eagle in the background just to the left of President Jackson's image and a smaller metallic green eagle to the lower right.

Portrait and Vignette- The oval borders and fine lines that surround the portrait of President Jackson in the $20 1990's version has been removed. The new portrait has been moved up and the shoulders extended into the border of the new bill. Additional engraving details have also been added to the vignette background.

Other features of the $20 bill are:

Paper- The $20 bill is one-fourth linen and three-fourths cotton containing red and blue fibers.

Federal Reserve Indicator- A universal seal to the left of the portrait represents the Federal Reserve System. A letter and number beneath the left serial number identifies the particular Federal Reserve Bank that issued the new $20 bill.

Serial Number- The new $20 bill uses a unique combination of 11 numbers and letters which appear twice on the front of the note.

Microprinting- Microprinted words are used in the new $20 note to make replication difficult. Among microprinted words are the inscription "USA20" along the border of the first three letters of the blue "TWENTY USA" ribbon...located to the right of the portrait. Also, the words "THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 20 USA 20" appear in black in the border below the Treasurer's signature.

The introduction of the new $20 bill will be followed by a new $50 bill in 2004 and a new $100 bill in 2005. New designs for the $5 and $10 bills are still under consideration. A redesign of the $1 and $2 notes is not planned.

The US Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP) expects that to stay ahead of counterfeiters, enhancement of the design of US paper currency will be an ongoing process, with new designs to be introduced every 7-10 years.......Larry Nakata.




LOCATION: Central Lutheran Church

DATE & TIME: Tuesday, December 9th 6 PM Start.

Our club's 15th year Christmas Party will be an event in which members will be asked to bring desserts, salads, and hors d'oeuvres. The club will provide the turkey and ham main dishes for the main dishes as well as the chips, dips, soda pop, coffee, plates, cups, and utensils.

In keeping with our coin club's tradition, the main event will see our Christmas Coin Auction. This will be a spontaneous type coin auction in which we ask our members to bring in their coins and numismatic lots on the day of the auction. Roy Brown will be making phone calls to each of you on what food items will be brought to the December 9th Christmas party. This will help us in the planning of the event.

If there are any questions, contact Larry Nakata.



    You have probably heard the cliche "10% of the people do 90% of the work". That certainly seems true of a volunteer organization.

At the Anchorage Coin Club, we need to improve on that 10%.

Right now...we have a need for someone (with webpage experience) to take over the coin club's webpage. In years past, we were able to post our club's monthly newsletter on that webpage. This is not happening at present. We need someone to look into and improve the appearance of our club's webpage.

Any volunteers?!!!

Your coin club could certainly use the help.

Interested members can contact Larry Nakata (daytime #269-5603).



    The Anchorage Coin Club's 15th year medallions are scheduled to be ready by the time of our club's Christmas Party in December.

Cost of the two coin set consisting of a Proof Silver and Proof Bronze coin will be $35 to each member of our club. The coins will be encapsulated and placed in a display box. Your membership number will be engraved on the edge of each coin. If you wish to order 5 or more sets, the price is reduced to $30/set,

Also available will be single bronze medallion coins in a mylar flip holder with no lettering on the edge. These bronze medallions are available to each member of our club at $7/coin. If you wish to order 5 or more bronze medallions, the price is reduced to $5/coin.

There will also be single silver medallion coins in a sealed holder with no lettering on the edge. These silver medallions are available at $20/coin. If you wish to order 5 or more silver medallions, the price is reduced to $ 18/coin.

There are also 5th and 10th year medallions available at $45 for the two coin set and $10/each for the single bronze medallions.

If there are any questions, feel free to contact Larry Nakata at (907)269-5603 (daytime number) or at (907)563-1729 (in the evenings)....Larry Nakata.



The Anchorage Coin Club

Club Officers

Board of Directors


Club Archivist / Photographer


To save costs, members not responding to renewal notices within 3 months will be considered inactive.

The Anchorage Coin Club is a non-profit organization formed to provide information, education, and a meeting place for individuals having an interest in numismatics.

Correspondence Address: Anchorage Coin Club, P.O. Box 230169, Anchorage, Alaska 99523