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ACCent: The Monthly Newsletter of the Anchorage Coin Club

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Membership Meeting 1st Wed. each month, 7 PM, Central Lutheran Church, 15th and Cordova

Vol. 24  No. 6




   What's the difference between a forger and a counterfeiter? It's like asking; what's the difference between a coin collector and a numismatist? They both mean the same thing, but the degree of involvement one puts into a counterfeit or a forgery takes on a whole new meaning. For example, a coin collector is only interested in collecting coins, not much thought or effort goes into his collection, the same is true with the counterfeiter. The counterfeiter will take a $20 bill and copy it on the copy machine, not much thought or effort goes into it. A numismatist is someone who studies the history and the minting process of coins, paper money, tokens, errors, etc. The numismatist will take courses in grading, counterfeiting (studying the diagnostics and details of the coin), toning, errors, etc., they will expand their knowledge to a level that they will know the difference of why gold and silver coins grade differently, can hopefully spot a cast made coin, and knows what tooling, whizzing, application, embossing, and plating all mean.

    This is a review of the book "Numismatic Forgery" by Charles M. Larson. The book goes into detail of what an expert forger will do to use their skills and knowledge in manufacturing fake coins that even coin experts, grading companies, and the secret service could not detect.

    Chapter 10, I personally found very interesting, which was "Wear, Aging, and Patina". If a forger can add wear, age, and patina to a coin, he can also remove it. Scratches, bag marks, blemishes all can be removed as the forger makes his dies and planchets. Pioneer forger Carl Becker from the 18th century was an expert at adding wear and an exotic expert at adding patina to coins with the use of urine. Some of his techniques are still in use today.


    Do you think the 1959-D mule cent with the wheat-back reverse is real or the perfect forgery? How about the 1943 bronze and copper cents, real or forgery? Read the book and you may be surprised on how easily they can be created. It is possible to create a bronze or copper cent that could avoid detection, but they are so rare they would not avoid suspicion. The author of "Numismatic Forgery" Mr. Larson was the night guard for a Mr. Frank Gasparro (master forger and murderer), who claims to have made the one and only 1959-D mule cent found so far. Mr. Larson now owns the machines and tools that Frank Gasparro claims to have used to make this cent. If Mr. Larson is successful in making another 1959-D mule cent, then does he not also become a forger?, (the Secret Service is watching). The United States Mint adamantly stated this mule cent could not have been made at the mint but we have it and it recently sold for $100,000.

    As a reference book that goes deep into the mind of a forger, you will find all the tools, equipment, and other resources necessary to make dies, manufacture planchets, and collars for edge markings of ancient to modern coins. An illustrated step-by-step guide to the principles, methods, and techniques to manufacture the rare or common coins. So after reading the book don't create something illegal or you just might meet Mr. Frank Gasparro in jail.

    We are at a point in time where there are thousands and thousands of counterfeiters and forgers. Thousands in the US and tens of thousands in China, Russia, Middle East, Africa, etc. Some countries have the money to buy the best tools and equipment necessary to create the perfect forgery.

    In the presentation of "Bust Half Dollars", that I did last year, I showed you pictures of Chinese workers creating forgeries adding edge lettering to early bust half dollars by the thousands. Master Forger and Murderer Frank Gasparro states that some of his forgeries are slabbed by major grading companies and his manufactured errors are scattered all around the Salt Lake area in collector's hands. This book will and should scare the hell out of you.  ...Stan Mead



If you own a signed copy of Bill Fivaz's Counterfeit Detection Guide...

You are probably a numismatist...

And you should belong to the Anchorage Coin Club.



May 4th Membership Meeting


Door Prize: Certified Coin-Tru Grade Service 1973 Lincoln Cent MS-66 Red Won by Don Somers. Membership Prize: Certified coin- International Numismatic Bureau 1971-S Jefferson Nickel GEM Proof Uncirculated. Won by Bud Biloon.

Other Prizes:

Anchorage Coin Club 10th Year Bronze Medallion (1988-1998). Won by Bob Zorick.

Numismatic DVDs won by Dennis Williams, Bob Zorick, and John Pastes.


Coin Show on Saturday (May 21st 10 am-6 pm) and Sunday (May 22nd 11 am-6 pm) at the University Center. Tables available at $10/ each with cases provided.

After the coin show, next main event will be the club's Summer picnic on Saturday afternoon (July 9th) at the Abbott Community Park on Elmore Road. The club will provide the hamburgers, hotdogs, chips, dips, soda pop, plates, forks, spoons, knives, and napkins. We ask that our club members bring a potluck side dish, salad, or dessert for the picnic.

The main event at our July 9th Summer picnic will be the Numismatic Donation Auction in which club members are asked to donate coins, paper currency, and numismatic items. Proceeds from the Donation Auction to benefit our club programs. We are now accepting such donations.

Thanks go to Stan Mead and his wife, Ruth, for posting our club meeting times and dates in the Community Section of the Anchorage Daily News.

Following announcements, a presentation was then given by Stan Mead on the subject of "Numismatic Fraud- Difference Between a Counterfeit and a Fraud."

The meeting then concluded following the club's monthly coin auction.

Next meeting: June 1st 7pm.





Last: EPACE - PEACE the post war feeling celebrated with the eagle's closed wings on the back of the new 1921 silver dollar.




May 18th Board Meeting


    Meeting called to order at the New Cauldron Restaurant at the University Center. No correspondence reviewed.

    Had dinner. Set times for coin show in upcoming weekend. Agreed to "CHILI NIGHT" for next membership meeting. Invented new event: SHOW AND TELL where each member brings in one of their favorite coins or sets and tells us about it.

Adjourned 7:20PM, next meeting June 15th.

Coin Show Report

    The coin show at the University Center was a great event for the club it was not such a great event for members selling coins at the show. People were happy to find us and we gave out several membership applications. Two news programs sent crews and our president was put on TV with his bushy eyebrows and commanding voice. Everyone from a housewife in Muldoon to a barber in midtown saw us with everything from BU Alaska quarters to ancient Roman coins to sell but not many of them were there to buy.

We need to work on advertising in the future but the exposure we got for the club was great.

Bullet Auction Coins


1859 (Copper Nickel) Indian Cent F MB 10
1872 Indian Cent G (Reverse Scratch) MB 35
1874 Indian Cent G MB 8
1970-S/S (Strong) Cent RPM#l BU NM
1982-P Cent struck through BU MB 15
1852 Type I Silver 3 Cent F MB 20
1866 Nickel 3 Cent VF MB 10
1866 Nickel 3 Cent VF (Double Error: Misaligned obv. Die and Major Rev. Cud) MB 25
1939-P Jefferson Nickel Double Die Rev #1 F MB 15
1877 Seated Liberty Quarter F+ MB 20
1834 Bust Half VF-35 MB 55
1921-S Walking Half (Semi-Key) VG MB 35
1893-P Morgan Dollar Fine MB 175
Hobo Nickel by Keith Pederson MB 45
1882-CC GSA Morgan Dollar MS-62 PL MB 235

-Donation Lots from Bill Fivaz:

1892 Columbian Half VF NM
1926 Sesquicentennial Half VG NM



to the next meeting







ADDRESS :_________________________________________________

CITY:________________________ STATE:_______ ZIP:___________

TELEPHONE (HOME):________________________________


DUES: Regular; Full membership for those living in Anchorage $25

          Sponsored membership - first year $15

          Senior, Handicap, & Associates outside Anchorage area $10

          Junior; those under the age of 17 $5

          Life membership $250

Send application and dues to :

Anchorage Coin Club
P.O. Box 230169
Anchorage, Alaska 99523

E-mail Address:







TICKETS: $5 each or 5 for $20



President: Tim Burke

Vice President: Carl

Secretary: Larry Nakata

Treasurer: Stan Mead

Board Member: John Larson

Board Member: Robert

ACCent Editor: Loren Lucason


#91 Mike Orr:

#110 Bill Fivaz: e-mail

#210 Tom Cederlind: